While people might revel in the fireworks and festivities on the 4th of July, the explosive sound of fireworks is far from fun for our pets. They don’t understand why these loud sounds continue into the night or even the week following the 4th. The explosive sounds of can cause your pet to be scared well beyond the 4th of July, or even cause them to run away. In fact, organizations like the SPCA see the most lost animals around the 4th than any other time of year. Before you head out for BBQs, parties or firework displays, take care to make sure your pets are cared for. Cher, a top pet expert on JustAnswer shares her tips for keeping pets safe, and hopefully calm, this 4th of July.
1) Keep them inside
Do everything you can to keep your pets inside on the 4th of July. If the festivities are taking place at your home, and you know your pet has trouble with the sound of fireworks, you might want to consider a crate for inside the house. The containment of a crate can give animals a larger sense of security.
2) Consider calming tools or prescription drugs
Pheromone diffusers, like Feliway for cats and D.A.P. for dogs, release synthetic pheromones like those found on a cat or dog’s face into the air to help calm them. If you know your pet’s reaction will be severe, you might want to discuss a prescription anti-anxiety medication with your vet to help them get through the upsetting noises. Most of these medications have a sedative side effect, so if they sleep through most of it, that would be great.
3) Play quiet music or sounds
There are actually CDs produced for the express purpose of calming anxious dogs. Play these on repeat while you are away for the night.
4) Use an anxiety wrap
Developed by veterinarians, anxiety wraps such as the Thundershirt work much like swaddling a baby to keep your pet feeling contained and safe. They apply gentle constant pressure to their torsos, which soothes dogs.
If keeping your pets inside just isn’t an option, or if you plan on taking them with you to a parade or park, make sure that all of their tags or chip information is current. There’s a strong possibility that a loud firework could cause your dog to bolt away from you.
Make sure your dog understands all his or her commands clearly, so that they stay close. The anxiety wrap mentioned above would also be a good idea for dogs who are out and about on the 4th.
Have more than one animal at home? Or have a large animal or bird you need 4th safety tips for? Talk with veterinarians and other pet experts like bird and large animal specialists now on JustAnswer.