fbpx

6 Ways to Calm a Dog Scared of Fireworks


2 girls celebrating 4th of july. a dog scared of fireworks
9 min read

In less than two weeks from now, we will be celebrating The 4th of July, The independence day. If you choose one word to define the 4th of July celebrations, That would be Fireworks

Fireworks are a fun and exciting way to celebrate the Holiday.
On every 4th of July,
The night sky turns into a beautiful painting of The Red, White, and Blue celebrating a Triumphant Nation.

A glorious sight all across America, For dogs, though, those loud booms and flashing lights aren’t so fun. A Dog scared of fireworks has become a normal sight to see as well.

Some dogs may have no problem with the sight and sound of fireworks if they’ve been desensitized. For example, Hunting dogs grow used to the sounds and smells of hunting rifles and gun powder.

However, Most dogs are not used to these things, so the Fourth of July can be a particularly stressful holiday for dogs and their humans alike.

I have a friend, John, On every 4th of July, he would give his 11-year-old Lakeland terrier, Scout, a mild sedative.
He drives her as far from the local fireworks as possible, cranks up the radio, and makes a heroic attempt to keep her calm.

John and his Scout aren’t the only ones doing that

woman and her dog sitting on a lake. A dog scared of fireworks
Credit: Figo

Fact
On the Fourth of July,
More pets run away than any other day of the year.
That’s why it’s critical to ensure people can identify your dog and contact you if he runs off out of fear.
A smart decision from your part would be to Get Him Micro-chipped well in advance of such holidays.
Also, it’s a very good idea to attach Identification Tags to his collar.

So, why is your Dog scared of fireworks, and what can you do to help him?

Luckily, There is a lot of simple strategies for dog owners, From distraction to anti-anxiety vests and more…

In this article, we’ve rounded up all the tips you need to help your dog feel better when the fireworks show starts.

But first, To find a solution, We must acknowledge the problem. So let’s start with The Reasons why is your dog scared of fireworks.
Shall we?

6 Reasons Why Dogs Scared of Fireworks

1. They’re Loud

Most fireworks make some kind of loud sound.

Dogs are blessed with a more acute sense of hearing than humans, so those loud booms, crackles, and whistles are alarming to them.

dog scared of fireworks

2. They’re Unpredictable

To your pup, fireworks come out of nowhere.

You may be expecting fireworks on holidays like the Fourth of July, but for your dog, it’s just another day.

Those firecrackers come without warning. The loud noises and flashing lights sound and look different each time.

Plus, fireworks come at different intervals, shapes, and colors so dogs can’t get used to them.

3. They Pose a Threat

The noise and unpredictability of fireworks result in making many dogs perceive them as a threat, Which in turn triggers their fight-or-flight response.

dog scared of fireworks

You may notice Your dog barking at the noises or trying to run away and hide. Your pup may also show other signs of anxiety, too, like restlessness, panting, pacing and whining.

4. Fireworks Make Dogs Feel Trapped

There is nowhere to hide, Fireworks are inescapable on holidays like Independence Day. That’s why if the noises trigger your dog’s flight response, he will try to run from the threat.

Unfortunately, there’s often nowhere to go, as you can still hear those loud booms indoors.

dog scared of fireworks

5. Fireworks Proximity

From your pup’s perspective, the experience of fireworks is different than other natural loud noises, like thunder.

Fireworks are closer to the ground, more vibrant, and are accompanied by sudden booms, flashes and burning smells.

Dogs naturally experience the world through their senses; nose, eyes, ears. The traditional Fourth of July celebrations can be overwhelming to them.

Now, after we established why is your dog scared of fireworks, It’s time for your part as a dog parent To Try and Calm him.

6 Tips on How to Calm a Dog Scared of Fireworks

As we mentioned before, Dogs have good reasons to fear fireworks.

Fortunately, there are several things you can do to make your dog feel safe and secure. Here are some of them,

1. Stay Indoors or Get Away from It All

Experts from the Humane Society emphasize the importance of keeping your dog indoors on fireworks-heavy days.

By doing that you will reduce his exposure to the sounds, plus prevent him from running away. Turning on a radio or television helps provide white noise and distraction.

dog watching TV. dog scared of fireworks
credit: K 9

Also, Leaving your town for a quieter spot if you can is a pretty good idea.
Camping, perhaps?
If you’re not able to get away, and you live in an area with lots of fireworks activity, then have a travel kennel at home for your pup to feel safe in.

Also, try to hire a dog sitter who doesn’t live as close to all that noise. A loving, local sitter or a doggy daycare provider can also help if your pup is going to be alone over the holiday.

2. Talk to Your Vet about Possible Medications

Talk to your veterinarian about medication if you know your pet is upset by the holiday festivities.

Dog scared of fireworks

A variety of options are available to help treat your dog’s firework phobia. Here are some of them:

  • Pheromones. They are Available via a diffuser, a spray, or a collar.
    Adaptil dog-appeasing pheromones have the ability to reduce your dog’s anxiety, Whether it’s related to fireworks, storms, traveling, or separation.
    A research study published in the Journal of the British Veterinary Association specifically evaluated its use for storm phobia in dogs and found it effective.
  • Melatonin. This over-the-counter supplement is widely available.
    When using Melatonin for anxiety, Dog parents report differing levels of relief. Talk to your veterinarian about appropriate doses for your dog.
  • Prescription medications. Especially in severe cases, Medication can be a lifesaver for a noise-phobic dog.
    Your veterinarian can guide you through the various choices.

3. Give Your Dog Lots of Snuggles

A common myth has it that if you pet your pup during an anxious episode, they’ll feel more afraid.

However, You can calmly soothe and reassure your pup as long as you avoid loud exclamations or frantic movements. So cuddle away!

dog scared of fireworks
credit: puppy leaks

4. Invest in a Pressure Wrap or Vest

These snug-fitting vests have a magical touch as they apply sustained, comforting pressure to your dog’s torso. This leads to him feeling relaxed

There is a lot in the market of these products but I personally recommend The RELAXVEST™: Dog Anxiety-Calming Vest

The RELAXVEST will give your dog a tight hug to relieve their stress and make them feel again.

It has the same effect on them as cuddling with you, and it makes them relax.

The RELAXVEST works like magic with my 9-year-old Labrador.

Breathable, high-quality material makes it feel nice on their skin so they can wear it all day, and the flexibility of its material means they can have it on while walking around.

5. Acclimation is a Must

One of the best ways to prepare your dog for fireworks is to make sure he’s comfortable with the sound in advance.

This is a simple process, However, it can take time. It may take possibly three or four months of playing the recorded sound of fireworks for your dog at an increasingly louder volume before he eats, before a walk, and before affection and play.

dog scared of fireworks

This gradual process will condition your pup by the association to hear the sound and interpret it as something good.

While you can try this method over only a week or two, in such a short time span it should only be used in conjunction with one or more of the other tips.

6. Send Your Dog Calming Signs

Sending a calming message to your pup that there is nothing to worry about will help him to relax. Remember, Your pup will look up to you for guidance.

Humans use words to communicate, While dogs communicate with energy and will look to their pack leader for clues on how they should behave.

Dog scared of fireworks

If you played this thing down and didn’t make a big deal or show excitement about the fireworks, then he will learn to be less concerned as well.

In all of the cases mentioned above, Try to waste your dog’s excess energy first, before the fireworks start. You can do that by taking your pup on a very long walk to tire him out and put him in a calm state.

Finally, and most importantly, Don’t think of this in terms of your dog as your child who is missing out on a great, fun time. That is basically human guilt. Your pup won’t have a clue what he is missing.

Claim your role as the good pack leader by not exposing him to a situation that will trigger his flight instinct in a negative way.

When the booms and bangs of Independence Day are over, your dog will be grateful to you for having made it a less stressful experience!

That’s it.

That was our Guide on How to calm a dog scared of fireworks, I hope you have enjoyed it

If you liked this post, share it with a friend, he might be wondering about this too.

Good luck, I hope you and your pooch have a wonderful 4th of July

Remember, When you understand why is your dog scared of fireworks, you can better address your dog’s fears and help him stay calm

Also, Love is the best medicine and the ultimate answer to all Problems. Love yourself and love all the living things around you

What did you think about this article?

Whatever you think, comment below and let me know!

If you liked what you read here and want to read more check out my other articles on Top 10 Dog Breeds That Are Amazingly Like A German Shepherd or The Top 10 Easy to Train Dogs For You

If you have any questions or further tips of How to calm a dog scared of fireworks that I might have missed, Feel free to tell us in the comment section, We are all here to learn for the sake of our beloved furry friends

Have a nice day and Read you next time.

Recent Content

link to 30 DIY Halloween Pet Costumes

30 DIY Halloween Pet Costumes

9 min read Halloween is almost here, which means that you should start brainstorming your pet’s Halloween costume. If you want some awesome Halloween costumes for your dog, then consider DIYing their costume yourself. What are some fun Halloween costumes that you can DIY for your dog? A few of the fun Halloween costumes that […]