Thursday, June 29, 2017

4th of July Safety!

The 4th of July is so much fun, said no dog ever.

Many pets are terrified of fireworks and other loud noises. These sorts of noises are hard to predict and even harder to work on with training. My dogs are usually over threshold immediately upon hearing the first bangs or pops.

Fireworks can cause a great deal of stress in dogs. Some signs to look for would include:

  • Shaking or Trembling
  • Drooling
  • Barking or Howling
  • Refusing to Eat Food
  • Pacing, unable to settle
  • Trying to hide or trying to get into or out of the house, fence or enclosure
  • Loosing control of their bladder, bowels or anal glands. 

Things we can do to help our dogs get through the night:

Exercise your dog early and make sure to walk them before it gets dark. I'm planning on running the girls several miles out at the big park in the afternoon. Hopefully they will be tired and sleep through the festivities.

Keep your pets indoors! Many pets who are left outdoors during fireworks end up panicking and getting lost. If you must go outside, keep your dog on a leash attached to a harness. Harnesses are a lot harder to escape from. Pets should also be wearing ID tags with your most current information.

Close your curtains or blinds. Turn on your TV, fan or radio to provide them with some background noise and distraction.

Some dogs find hiding in their crate to be comforting. My dogs love their crates and I will often throw a blanket over their crates, too which gives them an extra sense of security.

If your dog will take food, you can try to keep them busy with a food puzzle toy, like a stuffed kong. 

Some dogs do just fine with the noises but other dogs, like mine, are not easily calmed by petting or talking to them. They are just too upset by the noise. Pets who are very frightened and who might hurt themselves should never be left alone. If nothing seems to work for your pet, you should consider speaking to your veterinarian about sedatives. We've had really good luck with trazadone but it's important to consult with a veterinarian to find out which drug might work best for your dog.

I hope everyone has a safe holiday!


  1. Trazadone didn't do squat for Blueberry. I'm trying Ewegurt with her this year and just hoping to ride it out as usual. Maybe I will try to build her a little pillow fort inside to make her feel a little more secure. I know the night of the 4th is always bad - but it's also the week leading up to it and the few days after that are rough since people set off their firecrackers early to "test" them I guess and then after to get rid of the extras. I still hope for pouring rain on those nights. It only happened once - but it was spectacular. Best. 4th. Ever.

  2. I am hoping that things continue to be quieter at our new home. At the old house we had neighbors that loved to set off fireworks....after we were already in bed and thought it was safe. Poor Cricket was a wreck. So far at the new house it's been quiet, and I sure hope it stays that way.

  3. Little Bit hated fireworks and we did all these things. We always stayed with her while all the noise was going on. We wanted her to know that we were right here to comfort her. We sure miss our girl.

    Have a fabulous day. Scritches to the girls. ☺

  4. Good and timely post! Luckily me and Stanley are pretty mellow about it.

    Your Pals,

    Murphy & Stanley

  5. One of the saddest things I've ever seen was one of my fearful foster dogs cowering in the basement during a thunderstorm. I can't imagine how horrible it is to be so frightened and not be able to tell oneself that it will be over soon.

    Hope you and the pups can have the calmest night possible.

  6. My little dog Phoebe isn't afraid of fireworks, thunder, or other loud noises. Icy on the other hand is terrified of both! She will cower in the closet at the slightest hint of fireworks - she'll hear them in the far distance before we ever do. Poor thing. These are all great ideas to help dogs deal with fireworks. Thunderstorms too.
    Love & Biscuits,
    Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them


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