American Independence Day is a time of national pride and celebration alongside friends and family, including our furry friends. One of the classic ways of celebrating the 4th of July—with fireworks—can also be a startling experience for your pup pal. To a sensitive pooch, the popping of the fireworks sounds like major explosions, the flashes are blindingly bright and the smoke that comes with it is irritating at first whiff. For these reasons, it’s best to leave him at home if you’re planning to go see fireworks during this busy summer holiday. If you do decide to bring Fido along for the fun, make sure you’re well prepared so you can all enjoy the festivities together.
Put a Tag on It
Did you know that more pets run away on the Fourth of July than any other day? It’s true, and this fact alone should make you aware of how serious of an issue 4th of July safety is when it concerns your precious pup. In the event of a runaway case, make sure to equip your pup with updated ID tags and better yet, a microchip.
Give Off Good Vibes
You may not notice it, but your pup picks up on your emotions enough to know when you are stressed, excited, fearful, etc. Therefore, to keep your dog calm in a stressful situation, you must start by appearing calm yourself. Take a deep breath, slow down your movements and speak to your pup in a happy, relaxed tone. Your reaction to the situation will have an impact on your pup’s response to a slightly scary event.
Tire Him Out
Before the July 4th events, give your pup a nice, long walk to let out all his energy. By the time the festivities begin, he’ll be pooped, and therefore less likely to become excitable. If you’re lucky, he’ll nap right through the night!
If you and your pup are indoors for the night, which is recommended during 4th of July displays, but are still near enough the fireworks, your pup could still get startled. Reduce the noise level by closing all the doors and pulling down the blinds.
If the noise of the fireworks is loud enough to upset your pup, distract him from the sound by turning on the TV, playing some relaxing music or giving him his favorite toy. You may also be able to divert him with treats or a bone to chew on. Crate training your dog is also a helpful way to provide him comfort from a distressing situation in his own safe space.
Try a Thundershirt
Some people swear by Thundershirt to calm their agitated pup. By putting a Thundershirt on your dog before the fireworks start, he will feel greater peace of mind as the soft pressure from the vest helps to relax your pup. They also work great during thunderstorms, hence the product name.
As you celebrate America with patriotism this holiday, remember to keep the wellbeing of your precious pup in mind. With our tips at your disposal, both you and your pup can have a comfortable holiday celebration.