The loud “booms,” “pops,” and “screams” of fireworks are sure to delight people around the nation this 4th of July. While fireworks can be a literal blast for humans and their families, they can be exceptionally overwhelming and anxiety-inducing for our pets. During firework shows, the sounds and bright flashes can cause many pets to become so anxious they run away from their familiar environments. So how do you keep pets safe during fireworks? You can prepare them and your home for firework festivities this holiday.
Keep Your Pets Indoors
The sounds and sights on the 4th of July can cause your pet to bolt. In stressful situations, your pet may not respond to strangers’ calls or even calls from you, a familiar face. For this reason, it’s a good idea to keep your pets indoors when there is a risk of a firework show near you. Shut doggy doors and keep an eye on your pet in the yard, as unfamiliar booms can frighten them and cause them to try to escape.
Provide a Secure Space
There should be a spot in your home where your pet feels safe and secure. This could be a crate, pet carrier, or even a pallet in a quiet room such as a closet. If your crate is near a window, try moving it to an interior room without any windows for the duration of the holiday. Anxiety vests may work for some pets or having them snuggle under a weighted blanket.
Give Your Pets Distractions
Before the festivities begin, take your pet on a long walk or engage them with a game of fetch. Physical activity will tire them out and lessen the likelihood of anxiety occurring during the stressful event. During a loud show, try giving your pet a new toy or chew to keep them occupied and their mind off the outside noise. You can also turn on the television or soothing music to drown out the firework sounds.
Update Their Information
In the event that your pet escapes unexpectedly, the likelihood of their return is higher when they are wearing updated tags and are microchipped. Pets should wear ID tags indoors and out, and their microchip information should be updated to their current address and owner. Talk to your vet about microchipping your pet.
Talk to Your Veterinarian
If you’re worried your pet might become overly stressed during a firework show, talk to your veterinarian about the possibility of calming medication. Pet owners commonly use medication to lessen anxiety in high-strung pets when they are in a stressful situation, such as when experiencing separation anxiety. Remember, every pet is unique and will react to medications differently. Ensure you clear it with your veterinarian before administering any kind of medication to your pet.