The Fourth of July holiday is quickly approaching, and with it comes Fourth of July fireworks and fears. While these pyrotechnic extravaganzas are fun for us to watch, our pets feel a bit differently. The bright lights, ear splitting sounds and acrid smell in the air are terrifying to our furry friends. Many pets are lost each July when fireworks cause them to panic and run away trying to escape the spectacle. Others cower in closets or under beds shaking with fear. For some dogs, the fear stays with them long after the fireworks stop and they are reluctant to leave the house to go for walks.
We can’t stop the fireworks, but we can provide some tips to help your pets through this loud, scary holiday.
Tips to Keep Your Pets Calm as Things Get Loud
We know there is nothing better than sitting outside with your dog on a beautiful summer night, but when the fireworks start, your pup may panic and bolt. This holiday, it may be best to leave your dog at home. You can make them more comfortable by leaving a television or radio on. Turning on your air conditioner will help drown out the sounds as well.
Both cats and dogs seek places to hide when things get loud. Building them a little fort out of boxes draped with a few thick blankets to dampen the loud noises may help them feel more secure.
Providing extra play time and new toys for enrichment may help distract pets from all the scary crashes, flashes and smells as well.
If you already know your pet is prone to anxiety and panics this time of year, you may want to talk to your veterinarian. There are some medications that can calm your pet when given in advance. It may take a few days to obtain the appointment or prescription, so inquire soon.
If you do plan on having your dog outdoors, we recommend making sure their collar and harness fit well. Harnesses should be snug without digging into your pet’s skin, collars should be tight enough that they can not slip over your pet’s ears, but you can fit 2 fingers between the collar and their neck. Make sure their tags are securely attached and contain your current contact information. Finally, keep a good grip on their leashes and have treats or toys on hand to distract them.
Hope these tips help you and your furry friends enjoy a safe and happy 4th of July!