No matter what the holiday or celebration, when it comes to fireworks, they can be terrifying and even life-threatening to animals. Dogs, cats, and wild animals don’t understand what fireworks are—all they know is that loud and scary explosions are going off and they need to run and hide for safety. Plus, fireworks blasts can leave animals confused, making it easier for them to get lost or injured when they run away, which puts them in more danger!
Play it safe by following the suggestions below to help your animal companions deal with celebrations that feature fireworks:
Don’t take dogs to events with fireworks, and don’t leave them outside alone during fireworks, either! Keep dogs and cats safe and comfortable indoors, and try to stay home with them if you can. ?
Since animals often like to run and hide during like fireworks, make sure they’re wearing a harness with an up-to-date ID tag. As additional protection, have your dog or cat microchipped by a veterinarian.
Frightened dogs have jumped through open windows—or smashed through closed ones—even on upper floors! ? Put on some classical music or play music specially made to calm dogs, like the music composed by Through a Dog’s Ear. Or you can turn on the TV, a fan, a dehumidifier, or a window air conditioner to help drown out the sound.
If your animal companions seem scared, try to get their minds off the scary noises by playing games or giving them interactive toys. Also, be generous with treats. Not only are treats a reward, they also have a positive effect on the brain!
A Thundershirt is stretchy and comfortable, and it provides gentle, consistent pressure that can help dogs and even cats feel more secure and relaxed during fireworks displays and thunderstorms. Talk to your parents about buying one for your animal companion. They’re available online, at pet-supply stores, and at the vet’s office.
Have your parents talk with your vet about natural calming supplements that could help your dog or cat relax. There are several very good options, but one of the safest and most popular for dogs is melatonin.
It’s up to us to keep our animal companions secure, calm, and comfortable. Follow the above tips this Fourth of July, and share them with your friends and family, too!