As the countdown to the New Year approaches and anticipation fills the air, it’s undeniable that the celebratory spirit is contagious.
However, amidst the excitement of ringing in a new chapter, our canine companions may find themselves grappling with an entirely different sentiment. The resounding echoes of fireworks, while symbolic of merriment for us, can instill fear and anxiety in our furry friends.
In the following guide, we give you a comprehensive set of strategies and considerations for upcoming new year. This is to help create a haven of comfort and reassurance for our beloved four-legged family members as we transition into the New Year.
Create a Safe Space
Set up a cozy retreat for your dog. This can be a quiet room with familiar bedding, toys, and comforting scents.
Avoid the Noise
Keep windows and doors closed to minimize the impact of outside noises. You can also draw curtains to further reduce visual stimuli.
Identification is Key
Ensure your dog has proper identification. You can do this by giving them a collar with an ID tag and a microchip, in case they get scared and run off.
Introduce your dog to firework sounds gradually. You can play recordings at a low volume and gradually increasing over time.
Dogs can sense their owners’ emotions. This is why, it is important to remain calm and composed to reassure them during firework displays.
Provide ample exercise during the day to help your dog expend excess energy. This can make them more relaxed in the evening.
Distract with Toys
Engage your dog with interactive toys, puzzles, or a favorite chew. These toys can divert their attention from the outside noise.
Use background noise, like calming music or a white noise machine. This can help drown out the sounds of fireworks.
Be with your dog during the fireworks to offer comfort and assurance. Petting them gently and speaking in soothing tones will also help.
Consult a Vet
If your dog has severe anxiety, consult with your veterinarian about potential calming aids or medications.
Secure the Environment
Ensure that your home and backyard are secure. This can reduce the risk of your dog escaping if startled by fireworks.
Train with Positive Reinforcement
Use positive reinforcement to reward calm behavior during fireworks. You can also reinforce a positive association with the noise.
Avoid Bringing to Firework Events
If possible, avoid bringing your dog to firework events. The loud noises and crowds can be overwhelming for them.
Provide a Distraction Feast
Offer your dog a special treat or a food-stuffed toy to keep them occupied and focused on something positive.
Use preventive measures like anxiety wraps or vests designed to provide a sense of security to anxious dogs.
Plan an Indoor Celebration
Consider celebrating indoors, away from fireworks. This way you can create a safer and more comfortable environment for your dog.
Educate neighbors and friends about the impact of fireworks on pets. By doing this, you can encourage a pet-friendly and quieter celebration.
Familiarize yourself with emergency vet services in case your dog faces distress or injury during the celebrations.
Monitor Firework Displays
Keep an eye on local events and their scheduled firework displays to anticipate and prepare for potential disturbances.
After the festivities, conduct a post-celebration check on your dog. Make sure they are calm and showing no signs of stress or injury.