5 Ways to Help Your Dog During Fireworks

5 Ways to Help Your Dog During Fireworks

Author WDF Staff


The holiday season is upon us again, and the fireworks and firecrackers come with it. Not only are those things not safe, but they can scare the hell out of our dogs. It is pretty easy to start hating fireworks - all you need to do is take one look at your scared dog, and you will hate them for the rest of your life.

Fireworks are one of the biggest sources of stress for our dogs, so it is no wonder many dog owners want to know what they can do to help their dogs during the “fireworks” season. The good news is - there are a few things you can do. However, there is no guarantee those things will actually work. We can tell you from personal experience that some of these tips work. Here are 5 ways you can help your dog during fireworks.

1. Create a safe space for your dog

Dogs are den animals, and when they have extreme anxiety or stress, they will instinctively start looking for safe places to get away from the source of their stress. If you are aware of that fact, you should create a safe space where your dog can move away from the noise and the lights.

colorful fireworks

If your dog uses a crate, you can move the crate to an area away from the windows. Fill their crate with treats and toys they might not be used to. Give your dog a piece of boiled chicken and keep them away from the noise.

2. Turn up the volume

The fireworks might be loud, but your dog is probably used to the sounds of your TV or radio. You can try to drown the fireworks noises with your TV. Play your favorite movie and turn the volume up so your dog can’t hear the noises coming from outside. The noises they will hear might not be ideal for their delicate ears, but it is certainly better than seeing them so stressed and anxious.

You can play some background noises like a fan or a vacuum cleaner (if your dog is not afraid of those) and allow them to drown out the noise. Plus, you can find a list of calming dog music here. Play some Mozart or Bach, and your dog might even fall asleep.

3. Comfort your dog

One of the ways you can help your dog is to comfort them. You can stay with your dog and comfort them while they’re in their crate. In fact, the best thing you can do is provide plenty of comfort to your dog while they’re afraid. It will really help them calm down.

fireworks blue

The best thing you can do is use long strokes across the whole length of the dog’s body. Long strokes have a calming effect, and they are the best way to help your dog’s anxiety. You should use a calm, even tone. Don’t frantically repeat one thing like “OK, OK, OK!” That might make a wrong impression, and your dog might think there is actually something they should be afraid of.

RELATED: Fear of Thunder in Dogs

4. Tire them out

There is a common expression among dog owners, and it goes like this - A tired dog is a happy dog. It is possible that if your dog sleeps, they won’t hear the sound of fireworks. If you know there are fireworks scheduled, you should take your dog out and tire them out a bit. Go for a jog or take them to the dog park where they can spend their energy.

The best thing you can do to keep your dog as calm as possible is to ensure all their needs are met. Make sure your dog “did their business,” and provide them with enough chances to run and get tired.

fireworks over a bridge

SAFETY TIP: Make sure your dog has a proper ID during fireworks. It is not uncommon for dogs to get spooked and run away.

5. Medication

This is usually the last resort. However, some medications will keep your dog calm. If your dog has severe anxiety, stress, and fear from loud noises such as fireworks, your vet can prescribe some sedatives that will keep your dog very relaxed and calm. Even some motion sickness pills have a sedative effect, so that might be a good solution for your dog.

The most important thing is you don’t medicate your dog yourself. Potent medications can be challenging to dose properly. If you get the dosage wrong, you can end up overdosing your dog and causing them more harm than good. You should talk to your vet and ask them for advice and a prescription. Whatever you decide to give to your dog, your vet should approve it.

World Dog Finder team

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