Posted by & filed under FIREWORKS.

Any dog owner should know that dogs and fireworks aren’t a good combination.

Nearly all dogs are scared of the sounds and sights of firework explosions. Thankfully, there are things that you can do ahead of and during a firework display to make your four-legged friend’s life a little easier.

Desensitisation

The main fear is that it’s a loud sound that the dog hasn’t heard before. It doesn’t just apply to fireworks either. Thunder and lightning can often provoke the same emotion in your dog.

By introducing your dog to these sounds gradually and in a controlled manner, you can desensitise them to the noise. This can take time and consistent effort, but the results may astound you. There are CDs and DVDs on the market that play a number of different sounds. Start by playing the sound quietly as background noise, and over time, increase the volume.

Soothe and calm

It’s easy for a caring owner to give a scared dog more attention than normal. This, however, doesn’t help. It can lead to your dog thinking it is right to be scared, and that through fear, they can get your attention. Remain calm, and try and act as if everything is normal.

When your dog exhibits calm behaviour, reward them.

Tire them out

If you have taken your dog out for a long walk, or another physical activity, they will be mentally and physically tired out. This means that they’re much more likely to settle in the evenings and ignore new, and loud sounds from outside.

Create comfortable surroundings

If your dog is in a comfortable environment, there’s less chance that they will become scared. You can employ simple measures like:

  • Switching a TV/Radio on to minimise noise from outside
  • Close all windows and curtains to deaden sound and ensure your dog can’t see the light show
  • Leave lights on in the house. This will minimise the chance of flashing lights creeping through your curtains/blinds
  • Provide them with a place to hide. Dogs often like to hide when scared, so make sure they have somewhere they can nestle away

If you would like to take more preventative measures, speak to your vet today.