Remember remember ... to look out for your dog!
It's that time of year again! We're already starting to hear the start of fireworks and it's not even the middle of October yet. So with that in mind I thought it would be a good idea to bonfire related post.
Why is my dog scared of fireworks?
Good question! Well, a dogs hearing (much like their sense of smell) is far superior to that of a human and research shows their hearing is FOUR times as sensitive compared to ours. So, let's imagine that someone made a really loud noise that was four times the volume of a firework continuously for a few hours and then came some flashing bright lights. Anywhere you go you can hear this noise. I'm pretty sure I would be scared too, wouldn't you?
What can I do to help my dog?
There are several things we can do and measures we can put in place before the night itself to help your four legged friend out.
First of all walk your dog during the day to prevent having to take them out whilst it's dark. This will hopefully mean you don't encounter any fireworks whilst your out on your walk meaning your dog can have the same awesome experience that they always do!
Close the curtains! I'd recommend to do this long before the fireworks begin therefore you're not rushing round when you hear those early ones! Trust me, if you can hear it then guess what so can your dog!
Make sure your dog has somewhere to go and can feel in control and comfortable. Whether this is their crate or a room in the house with you. Ensure there is plenty of fun stuff in there like their favourite toys and some tasty treats. Or maybe even a stuffed frozen kong!
Turn on the radio or put on a film which will help drown out the sound of the fireworks. This is great because chances are your dogs are already used to that sound and they will quite happily sleep or settle through it!
Engage with them. Don't just leave them to fight this battle alone play gently with them, cuddle them and give them that supporting high five. (Your dog can't high 5? Head over to our FB group and request a video and i'll show you how to teach it!)
Invest in a Thundershirt. These are like a constant hug for your dog! They apply pressure on the calming spots on your dogs body and allow them to feel calm and relaxed. They come in a range of sizes so make sure you get the correct one to fit your dog.
By putting some or all of these measures in place then you will definitely be helping out your dog when it comes to that dreaded night or even week as it seems to have developed to in recent years!
Just a few more points on what's not going to help your dog, although they may seem obvious.
Do not leave your dog in the house alone on bonfire night! It's a very unnerving time for a dog and leaving them alone will only make them feel even worse.
Do not punish your dog for showing their emotion. Whether they are barking, whining or being needy just try and think about how they are feeling and what you can do to help them overcome that feeling rather than punish them. This will only damage your relationship in the future.
If you have any questions or queries or would like any further help then please do not hesitate to get in touch!
Thanks for reading! Until next time folks!