How to Keep Your Dogs Safe and Happy When Fireworks are On

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Fireworks displays can be beautiful to watch and an excellent outing for families. Unfortunately, our four-legged friends often don’t think the same and can become terrified, sick, stressed, and anxious during displays, and even run away or hurt themselves.

As such, whether you have a new pet you only just realized this New Year’s Eve is scared of fireworks or an older dog that you need to keep safe and calm when you next buy fireworks for yourself and your family to enjoy, it’s essential to know how to best care for them. You can take numerous steps to ensure a fun night doesn’t become sad or worrisome.

 

Exercise Dogs Before Fireworks Begin

It’s helpful to exercise your dog before night falls, so they’re more likely to chill out, relax, and sleep during the fireworks display. If they can rest during the noise of the show, they’ll be much less affected. As such, take them for a walk, play tug of war, throw the ball to them, or put them through their paces on an agility course, etc., in the hour or two before the fireworks begin to get energy out of them and set them up for a calmer night.

 

Create a Space Pets Can Feel Safe In

Creating a safe space for your pets to spend their time during the fireworks show is also essential. For example, set them up in your home in their favorite room of the house, and make this area as snug and cozy as possible. Alternatively, you might take them to a friend or family member’s house for the night, a secure garage, shed, or some other spot.

Ensure they have a nice bed to rest on, enough food and water for a few hours, as needed, as well as some toys or cuddly blanket, etc., to help distract and soothe them. It also pays to close drapes, curtains, or the like or give the room some soundproofing to help your dog feel safer.

 

Ensure Dogs are Kept Distant from the Fireworks Location

No matter where you keep your pets during the fireworks, it’s vital that this isn’t close to the action. They should be kept as far away from the fireworks staging zone as possible. This distance will help to keep them feeling more relaxed, as they’re less likely to be spooked by all the noise, and they’re also going to be safer when it’s not possible for any stray fireworks to hit them accidentally or the area they’re being kept in.

 

Find Someone to Stay Home with Your Pet

Another tip is to see if you can find someone to stay home with your pet to keep them company during the fireworks display. Dogs are usually best left in their own environments, so having someone to stay with them rather than taking them elsewhere (unless it’s to a home they already know very well) can leave them less distressed.

Plus, having someone at home to soothe them if they start to pant, pace, and otherwise show signs of anxiety and distress is wise. Dogs will at least know they’re not alone, will be less likely to try to get out and run away, and thus less likely to hurt themselves or your home.

 

Spend Time Getting Your Dog used to Loud Sounds

You might also like to spend time desensitizing your animal to loud sounds in the weeks leading up to the fireworks. Training your pet to get used to louder and louder sounds over time will help them see that there’s not so much to be afraid of, and you can reward them for staying calm. You might, for instance, make loud bangs on saucepans, ring loud bells, sound smoke alarms and sirens, or set off small firecrackers as time goes on to gradually teach them that loud noises can be okay for them to deal with.

 

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Ensure They Have ID in Case They Run Away

If your dog does manage to run away when you’re off using or watching fireworks, you want to make it as likely as possible that you can find them as quickly as possible once you realize they’re missing. To do this, ensure they will be easily identifiable for anyone who might find them. They should be microchipped and wearing a collar with a tag that features their name, address, and your phone number so people can call you if your pet is located.

 

Trial Helpful Products to Calm Your Dog

Lastly, if your dog remains terrified of the noise of fireworks and gets too distressed, test out some helpful products designed to soothe animals. For example, trial an anti-anxiety vest that you can put on them before you leave home or speak with your vet about giving them some medication to keep them calm.

While we all want to be able to go off and have fun watching beautiful fireworks, we don’t want this to come at the expense of our beloved animals. Follow the tips above, though, and you should be able to protect and soothe your dog much better in the future.

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