For humans, fireworks are a sign of celebration! So just why are fireworks noises so much worse for dogs?
Though they may seem fun to us, fireworks and loud noises can make your pooch feel confused or scared. So what can you do to help your dog stay confident, and allow your family to enjoy the fun of fireworks?
5 Tips to Keep Your Dog Calm
1. Create a safe place or den for your dog
We all like to have a cozy, safe space to escape to! Your dog is no different, so creating a safe doggy haven in your home can help them to relax if they’re a little unsure!
The perfect dog den should be placed wherever your pet spends most of their time. A bed or crate is often an ideal comfy hiding place - make sure your dog can retreat and relax there at all times without being disturbed, especially if they’re alone.
To add a little extra reassurance, provide plenty of blankets for them to burrow into and feel secure. Comforting toys can also distract your dog and keep them occupied.
2. Mask the noise
If your dog has other sounds to focus on, fireworks won’t seem as scary!
Keeping the “big bang” away will stop your dog from feeling uneasy. Closing curtains, windows, doors, and blinds will help your dog feel safe and secure, and hide any flashes of light that they may associate with scary noises.
Playing music or the radio can also be soothing for your dog.
3. Keep your dog inside
If your dog doesn’t like fireworks noises, be sure to keep them indoors!
Taking them out when there are fireworks around will only create stress and confusion, especially if they can’t find a safe place to hide.
Instead, keep them inside to minimise the impact of loud bangs, and remember to keep doors, windows, and blinds closed to absorb the sound.
4. Stay with your dog
If you can, it’s best to be a friend to your dog and stay with them when there are fireworks outside.
Dogs are social animals so your presence will help your pooch feel secure! If you’re not able to stay home, then turning on the TV or radio can help to reassure your dog and mask the sound. Did you know that dogs prefer classical music?
5. Desensitise your dog to loud noises
Never punish your dog for reacting to loud noises as this will make them feel more uneasy!
If you want to desensitise your dog, noise soundtrack recordings can help adult pooches and puppies gradually get used to loud sounds. Increasing exposure slowly to these recordings is best, as this gradually familiarises them with surprise noises.
Rewarding your dog with treats, toys and praise when they stay calm during training can reinforce their confidence! But, if they show signs of fear, go back to the previous step and wait until they can respond calmly. They will gradually learn that there is nothing to be afraid of!
Of course, if your dog shows severe signs of anxiety and the above tips are not working, you should always consult your veterinarian.
Using ADAPTIL Calm Home Diffuser near your dog’s den can provide reassurance by sending “comforting messages.” You can also use ADAPTIL Express to conveniently provide fast calming effects when administered two hours before any anticipated noises. Using natural ingredients, ADAPTIL Express is a unique combination of amino acids and vitamins that provide fast, temporary calming to keep your dog relaxed but not too sleepy. They are palatable and can be easily given with or without food.
Following the above steps will help reduce doggy fear, so you won’t need to worry so much about your pooch on firework night!