Fireworks and pets – a stressful combination

Published on: 08/9/15 1:26 PM | Category: Stress

by Kim Kamphaus

It’s really no surprise that many dogs and cats dread the 4th of July holiday. Loud noises, particularly for prolonged periods of time, strike fear in many of our beloved companions. For this upcoming holiday weekend, take some extra steps to avoid undue stress for your canine and feline friends.

1. Be smart and safe…Do not ignite fireworks near your pets or allow them near open fires.
2. Take your dog for a walk/potty break before fireworks and noisy celebrations are likely to begin.
3. Keep your pets indoors. Confine them to a room or in a comfortable crate; provide them with a safe place. Close blinds/draperies. Turn on music, the television, or “white noise” for added distraction and to help mask the scary noises.
4. Stay at home, indoors with your pet if possible. Play games or use massage to calm and distract your dog or cat.
5. If you must be outside and/or near fireworks activity, keep your pet leashed or in a carrier at all times. Make sure your pet wears a current identification tag in case the worst should happen and your pet escapes.
6. If your pet has been severely stressed in the past due to fireworks or thunderstorms, talk to your vet about calming holistic remedies or medications prior to the holiday celebrations.
7. Be mindful that many people celebrate with fireworks on days leading up to and following July 4th. Your precautions may be necessary for multiple evenings.