Whether for the Fourth of July, New Year’s Eve, or another celebration, many pets owners deal with howling, barking, and generally anxious dogs/cats during fireworks. It’s even largely believed that Independence Day is the day when the highest number of dogs/cats run away. Many animals find fireworks scary. It's estimated that 45 percent of dogs in the UK show signs of fear when they hear fireworks.In fact, July 5th is often the busiest day of the year at animal shelters, as pets run off from home in fear, found lost and confused the next day.
How to calm dogs during fireworks?
- Walk them during daylight hours to avoid times when fireworks are likely to be set off.
- Close windows and curtains to muffle the sound of fireworks.
- Put on some music or tv to mask the firework sounds.
- Create a quiet space where your dog can feel in control.
- Create some hiding places around your home.
- Distract Your Dog With Tasty Toys.
- Update Your Dog’s Collar & Tags.Make sure your dog has a properly fitting collar and ID tags with contact info, just in case he takes off.
- Consider Anti-Anxiety Medication.For some dogs, medicine might be the best way to go. See our list of the best anti-anxiety medicine for dogs, including calming treats and other over-the-counter options you can order online, as well as medications that would require a veterinarian’s prescription.
How to calm cats during fireworks?
- Provide hiding places in your home.Close all doors and windows. It is extremely important that you do not open doors or windows while your cat is highly agitated, because she may panic at the sound and bolt outside.
- Microchip your cats in case they're startled and escape outside.
- Do not try to hold her. Except to move her to a safe location, it is unwise and unnecessary to try to hold a cat while she is panicking unless she seems to prefer being held.
- Try an herbal remedy. There are several herbs that are tasty and appealing to cats and that have stress-reducing properties.
- Use a crate. If your cat is crate trained and does not have negative experiences in a pet crate, a small crate like a pet taxi can be a great place to keep her safe during fireworks. It keeps her from running around, escaping the house, or hurting herself or others because she is confined in a small space.
Firework phobia is a treatable condition and animals don't have to suffer such misery every year. Seek advice from your vet who will, if necessary, be able to refer you to a professional clinical animal behaviorist.If your pet’s anxiety is severe, consider booking an appointment with your vet so you can discuss a medication that could help soothe your dog’s anxiety.
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*We hope to give you better ideas for your pet, but this information is not meant to be a substitute for veterinary care. Always follow the instructions provided by your veterinarian. If your pet feels bad, please take it to the veterinarian in time.