Fireworks and your Dog

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Heading to a fireworks show for Canada Day? As beautiful as they are for you to look at, the sound might have your pooch cowering and trembling. This year it may be best to leave your furry buddies at home, but there are some things you can do to prepare for next time.

 

Getting dog used to fireworks

Find  a video of fireworks and play it on a low volume while your dog is doing something she enjoys, such as playing, eating a meal, or cuddling with you. Play the video several times a day, raising the volume slightly each time. When your dog starts acting frightened lower the volume a bit.

If you live close to a place where fireworks will be set off talk to your doctor about getting anti-anxiety medications just for the occasion. You can continue working on getting your dog comfortable with the noise using videos or get the assistance of a trainer, so that next time you won’t need meds.

Heading out to the show

If you do decide to take your pooch, there are a few things you can do to make the experience a little less stressful. Take your dog on a long walk–much longer than you normally would. A pooped pup might just sleep right through the festivities. Bring along a kennel stuffed with comfy blankets in case she wants a cozy place to hide. Having a radio or something else to drown out the sound of the fireworks can be helpful. Some people think comforting a frightened dog will encourage the fear, but imagine if you were scared and your family just ignored you. Would you feel better or worse? Probably worse. Comfort your dog. This may mean holding, cuddling or speaking soothingly to her. Figure out what works best for your dog. You could also distract your dog by getting him to do obedience tricks.

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This same advice can be used for other loud noises your pup might be afraid of, such as thunderstorms and vacuums.