Tips

Tips To Prepare For Your Pets’ Safety For The July 4 Fireworks

With the July Fourth holiday quickly approaching and the inevitable fireworks and very loud explosions that abound in celebration of our independence, it’s a good idea to start planning how you will keep your pets safe, secure and as calm as possible.  Since many revelers start shooting off fireworks well in advance of the actual holiday, prepare your own arsenal of tactics and aids a couple of weeks prior to the Fourth to help your sensitive or skittish pets cope with as little stress as possible during the holiday.

Because many pets are startled quite intensely by the sudden explosions that can happen at any time, day and night, be sure that your pets ALWAYS wear a collar with I.D. when they go outside.

When they go outside, go out with them to supervise and give them a safety zone to seek out should fireworks go off.  Never leave your skittish pets outside if you are not home!   Frightened dogs are very capable escape artists and can injure themselves trying to get to safety from the explosions they hear and feel.

Have a current picture of your pets handy in case you need to make fliers or canvass the neighborhoods.

Leave the stereo, TV, AC on to provide background noise in the house and shut the windows.

Play soothing CDs such as those from Through A Dog’s Ear – http://throughadogsear.com – designed specifically to reduce stress.

Fit and acclimate your dog with a Thundershirt, which is designed specifically to address ‘thunder’ phobia.  Do this BEFORE you need it.

Ideally stay at home with your pets during the worst of the fireworks.  Watch movies, play Through a Dog’s Ear CDs.  Have some very tasty special treats – cooked chicken or beef, for example – to reward for tricks or other fun behaviors.  This is a good way to distract your pets and have them engage with you.  Make a Kong-sicle to give your dog to chew, which can help alleviate anxiety.  If they tend to seek out shelter in closets, bathrooms, under tables or other small spaces – give them a thick or heavy blanket they can burrow under or curl up in.  That will also help absorb some of the noise and vibration to which they are sensitive. 

It’s perfectly fine to snuggle with or reassure your nervous pets.  They look to you for guidance and support; reassurance is not coddling (definition: indulgent and overprotective), it’s letting your pets know you have their backs and you will keep them safe.

Please leave your pets at home safely secured inside the house with calming music, a safe chew such as a stuffed Kong and a thick cozy blanket should you leave to partake in the holiday festivities and fireworks show.

Contact me for assistance with any of the suggestions provided or for more individual help.

Have a fun, very happy July 4 celebration!