It doesn’t take much for dogs to get anxious and start pancaking. And when it’s loud abrupt sounds that they haven’t heard many times before and weird chemical smells that their ancestors never encountered in the wild, a panic attack is definitely a possibility.
Here are some things you can do to keep your dog from freaking out during fireworks.
1- Keep Them Away from The Fireworks
The first thing you should do is keep the dog away from the fireworks. This means not allowing the dog outside during fireworks.
Fun fact: Sound intensity decreases with distance following the inverse square law. This means that if you take the dog twice as far from the fireworks, the intensity will be one-fourth. If you take them three times away, it will be one-ninth.
2- Shelter Them in a Closed Room
It may not be possible or practical to take the dog too far away from the fireworks. You can instead rely on the walls of your house to absorb the sound. Keep your dog in a room separated from the outside by the most number of walls. These are most likely rooms at the center or bathrooms or closets. Doubling the thickness of the wall can more than quarter the intensity of sound that reaches your door. If you happen to have a soundproof gaming booth, take the dog in there.
3- Comfort Them
Dogs are highly social animals. They can read your mental state and react accordingly. They’re also capable of giving and receiving comfort, exactly like humans. In fact, humans share the emotional part of the brain, the amygdala, with all other mammals. Meaning dogs experience emotions and social connections the same way as we do.
This means that you can keep your dog calm by comforting them during the fireworks. By staying calm yourself, you’re indirectly telling them that everything’s alright and they don’t have to get anxious.
4- Get The Dog Used to Fireworks
The most effective way to get over trauma is by facing the trigger in a safe environment. The same is true for dogs. If you play firework sounds at a lower volume while cuddling and playing with your dog, they will form positive associations with the firework sounds and won’t freak out when they hear the actual sounds. They might even get excited, expecting the sounds mean they get to play with you.
Do you want to know how other dog owners handle these firework-related situations? Head over to theDogHood, and bask in other people’s wisdom! And by people, we mean dog lovers. This online community for dog lovers allows you to communicate with other dog lovers.
Visit their website or download their application to get all the tips from your fellow dog owners.
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