They are two days we love but that pets dread – New Year’s Eve and the Fourth of July. Fireworks and other loud noises can send them diving under the covers – or bolting, sometimes with tragic results.
Nicole Rigger – founder of Pets a Go Go, a service provider for more than 4,300 pet parents (and their furbabies) in Westchester and Fairfield counties for the last 15 years – has these tips for a safe, happy Fourth for all:
- “Keep your dogs away from fireworks: Ultimately, the easiest way to keep your dogs safe during this time is not to bring them to any live fireworks. Even if they have never experienced fireworks before and you are not sure how they are going to react, the safest bet is still keeping them indoors where you can see and monitor them.
- “Create a safe haven:Set up a calm and comforting area for your dogs somewhere in your house. The space should be away from windows so that they cannot see or hear the fireworks, and they should be surrounded by their favorite toys and treats. If you are concerned, stay home with your dog during the fireworks. They are comfortable with you, and your presence and soothing tone will help them to relax.
- “Walk your dogs prior to the noise:This is pretty self-explanatory, but you do not want to have to bring your dog outside during all the loud noise. Look into getting a lost-pet device/service so that if your dogs were to run, they can be found easily.
- “Desensitize your pet to the holiday:If you suspect that your dog may freak out, try playing soft sounds of fireworks beforehand so that your dogs can get used to hearing them. The volume should be low enough that your dogd notice the sound, but it does not send them into a panic.
- “Talk to your trusted pet care professional:If you feel as though you have tried everything, and none of it seems to work, you may want to talk to a professional who specializes in dogs to discuss behavioral practices and the best tips to sooth your dog’s anxiety during stressful times like these.
“Not all dogs are scared of fireworks, but it is important to realize that dogs take cues from their owners. As long as you stay calm, there is a higher likelihood they will as well. We hope that you follow these tips and that you and your dog find ways to enjoy Fourth of July.”
For more, visit petsagogo.com.