8 Calming Tips For Your Dog During Firework Season
It’s here folks: fireworks time! And you're going to need these calming tips when fireworks and thunder ensues. If your dogs are like mine, you know the fear and anxiety they experience during firework pops, like the thunder from the storms. During firework season, I tend to worry about my pups a bit more if I’m not home, and you should, too. Living in an apartment home doesn't mean your dog won’t experience the nearby neighborhood fireworks, or the devious apartment neighbor who thinks it might be OK to fire some up in the parking lot. No one wants to come home to an apartment home that’s been turned upside down. Lucky for you, I’ve gathered some doable calming tips for you to try this firework season and every season hereafter. (Yes, you can try them during thunderstorms, too!)
1. Don’t take your dog with you to the firework show.
Whatever you do, don’t take your dog to the firework show unless you know your dog is desensitized to the loud pops and large crowds. Your dog will have no safe place to hide if they get scared and are likely to run away. Ask the shelters or look on the many Facebook ‘Lost Pets’ pages. You don’t want to go through that stress, and neither does your fur baby!
2. Ensure your dog is inside.
If you’re not planning on staying home with your pup, then consider taking it to a family or friend’s house. This way, someone will be home to give them the company they need. Sometimes pets like laying at your feet or knowing someone is there in order to relax. If you don’t have someone to help you out, ensure you leave the TV on at a reasonable level and ensure your dog has access to its favorite place inside your apartment home.
3. Ensure your dog has proper ID tags.
ID tags should be secured, especially if they’re not microchipped. If your pet somehow has the opportunity to run away, then you won’t stand a chance by calling their name. If they do get away, proper identification will be helpful if a good samaritan finds them. But don’t chance it!
4. Get your pup some exercise.
You don’t want to leave them behind full of energy to use towards possible anxiety. Ensure you’ve spent time walking them or taking them to your community’s bark park to get rid of some energy. Once home, they'll only want to focus on relaxing.
5. Try an anti-anxiety vest, wrap, or calming coat.
There are quite a few items that relate to this on the market. The main purpose of such anti-anxiety vests, wraps, or coats is to put enough pressure around your pup’s body to give them the comfort they need. If you don’t feel like purchasing anything, you can use any stretchy fabric that, if tied appropriately, can offer the same relief. Check out Macho in the photo with his scarf. He’s one happy pup!
6. Condition their paws.
I find that this tip works for my two pups. I have a paw defense wax, grapeseed oil paw spray, and a paw lotion that I switch up on them. Neither of these items advertises to help calm dogs during stressful moments, but I find that it keeps them busy. Once it’s on the paws, I don’t exist for a good while because they’re busy licking it, trying to figuring out what the heck I put on their paws. And don’t worry, it doesn’t harm them if they attempt to lick it all off.
7. Acclimate them to the sound of fireworks.
Though this tip is a process, it can be useful for you to start exercising it with your dog. Playing sounds of fireworks or thunder can condition them to become more familiar with the sound. Do this in hopes that they experience less stress when the real deal arises. Yet, it’s not recommended to try this in already stressful situations. And remember, it will take time, but it’s worth a shot!
8. Stay home.
If you don’t want to risk your pup’s anxiety level spiking or even running away, then stay home, sit back, and relax next to your best friend. If you hear fireworks going on, try not to react so that your pup imitates your same reaction.
Please note that all the above tips should be exercised only before any anxiety ensues. Otherwise, you won’t get good results if you try to adopt these tips once your dog is already in distress. So, what do you think? Totally doable, right? Have any tips to add? Add them to the comments below! Happy pet parenting in your Camden apartment home!
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