Ahhh. Backyard barbecues, sunshine, sparklers, and fireworks. 4th of July is this week, and if you have a pet who suffers from firework anxiety, chances are you're feeling a little anxious right now too.
Here are five tips to help your four-legged family member get through fireworks with as little anxiety as possible!
1.Leave your dog (or dogs) at home
As fun as it may sound to bring your dog to the 4th of July festivities you’re heading to, it’s safer to leave him or her at home. The Humane Society reports that over the 4th of July holiday there is an increase in lost animals that show up at shelters. Keep your dog secured in a safe spot (a crate or a confined area of your house) at home so they’re not included in that statistic this year.
2. Get a Snuggle Puppy or ThunderShirt to help ease anxiety
If you can’t stay at home with your pup and you have a younger dog, a Snuggle Puppy may be the right choice. The Snuggle Puppy comes with a real-feel heartbeat and heat pack that mimics another dog, so your dog doesn’t feel alone and has a “friend” with them. It’s an all-natural remedy that helps calm your pet without medication or restraint. We carry a variety of colors in our store.
If you have an older dog, we suggest getting him or her the ThunderShirt and ThunderEase Calming Spray. The ThunderShirt's design applies a gentle, constant pressure to your dog’s torso, which helps reduce anxiety during fireworks. We carry a range of ThunderShirts of all sizes between XXS to XXL.
3.Turn on the TV to muffle noise and close curtains and blinds
Turn on the TV or radio before you leave to help drown out the sound of fireworks while you are gone. Closing the curtains and blinds in your house can also help ease your dog’s anxiety so they don’t see all of the flashes from any nearby fireworks.
4.Download the Presence app
Keep an eye on your pup while you are away with the Presence app. This app is a lifesaver, and it’s completely free! Download the app on two devices-one on your cell phone and then one on an iPad or old cell phone you don’t use anymore. When you leave your house, but want to keep an eye on your dog, all you have to do is set up your iPad (or old phone) up at home with the Presence app loaded on it. You can then access the iPad's camera via your cell phone from any location and keep an eye on your pup while you're out and about. The app has some cool features, like the ability to call and talk to your dog, record video, and take photos, too!
5.Make sure your dog is microchipped and wears an identification tag
This goes without saying, but in the worst-case scenario that your dog does manage to get away from the house and take off running, a microchip and identification tag will ensure your pup is returned home once he or she is found.
These tips are some of our go-to tips when July 4th rolls around each year. We know there are many, many more out there and each individual dog responds differently. What works for you when it comes to easing your dog’s anxiety during fireworks? Tell us in the comments below!