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Fireworks and Pets

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Pets Afraid of Thunder, Fireworks and other Loud Noises

Thunderstorms, the 4th of July, New Years and other loud celebrations can be a scary time for dogs and cats. The loud booming noises that accompany fireworks cause much anxiety and fearfulness in pets.

An animal's sense of hearing is more acute than ours and so the noises are much more intense for them. Adding to that their lack of understanding as to what is going on and BANG! You have a scared little pet on your hands.

When a pet becomes afraid, they may display unwanted or dangerous behavior such as:

  • Fleeing the yard or house
  • Biting, hissing or showing other signs of aggression
  • Chewing or destroying furniture and other property
  • Shaking, howling, whining or loosing control of their bladder.

Tips for Reducing Pet's Fear of Fireworks

But celebrations like July 4th, New Years Eve and other holidays don't have to cause such anxiety for your pets. Here are some tips for helping your pet cope with fireworks, thunderstorms, and other loud noises:

  • Don't take your pets to outdoor celebrations. The loud noises and colorful skies may be fun for you but they are not enjoyable for your pet. In fact, they can be quite dangerous. A scared dog, running through crowds and/or traffic in the dark is a recipe for disaster.

  • Ideally, leave them at home with a human companion. If you must leave them alone, place them in a secure room or crate. Cover the crate with a blanket to help reduce the noise. Shut the curtains and drapes and turn on lights to lessen the flash of the fireworks.

  • Leave on a TV or music to drown out the noise from the fireworks. (This works during thunderstorm season as well.)

  • Make sure that they are wearing their identification tags and that the information is current.

  • Exercise them before the festivities begin -- tire them out with a rigorous game of fetch or a long walk. Be sure to do this an hour or two before you leave them to give them time to calm down and enter a restful state.

See Natural Calming Aids for Pets