So it’s that scary Firework time of year again!
….Where some dogs have a complete ‘meltdown’- trembling, drooling, trying to escape out the window, hide under the bed….anything to escape the loud bangs of what we know as fireworks! It’s a really stressful time for both dogs and owners. Whenever dogs feel challenged/threatened they go into Survival mode, reacting to a challenge with either Fight, Flight, Avoidance or Submission. Your dog will exhibit one or more of these if they feel threatened by firework noises. So what can you do to make the experience as stress free as possible for your dog?
1. Exercise your dog for at least 45 mins 2 x day, particularly on the day where you know there will be a fireworks event nearby. This will ensure that your dog is in a more rested physical and mental state before any fireworks begin.
2. ‘If you worry, your dog worries!’ Your dog needs calm, confident energy around them when they are feeling stressed to lead them through their challenge. They don’t need you panicking aswell!
3. Try giving ‘Bach Flower Rescue Remedy’ which calms your dog naturally
4. Do not shut your dog outside during fireworks thinking that this will help them ‘get through it’
5. Do not nurture your dogs fear by talking to them, comforting them or giving them treats (they will be so ‘shut down’ that they wont eat anything anyway!). Rewarding them with these will only reinforce your dogs fearful state of mind, making them worse.
6. Do not let your dog hide. You can prevent this by being in one room with them and/or putting a house lead on your dog so that you can bring them out of any hiding place they bolt to.
7. Have the tv/radio on fairly loudly to help mask any outside noise