Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Dogs and Fireworks

My human loves me quite a bit and wants to take me with him on every adventure he can.  However, I am really glad he understands that dogs and fireworks don't mix so we don't go out for this event. Here are a few tips to follow:

The Noise and Lights
Though my human thinks I am the most brilliant dog of the entire universe, there are still some things I don't understand or like.  Please don't tell him, as I love being thought of as the perfect dog.

The noise and lights associated with the fireworks -they are frightening.  They make me want to run as fast as I can to get away from them or drop to the ground getting as low as possible.  Am I being attacked?  Since I can't drag my human around on a leash, I tend to walk right next to him for protection and only pulling when I'm really scared.

My human does not take me to any firework shows.  He stays home with me and we watch something funny on TV or he plays the stereo in his photography studio loud while he works.  Anything that would buffer or hinder the noise.   He will have the lights on too.  He loves for me to join him there.

"Dogs and Fireworks- not a good mix!"
Don't Leave Me Outside
Don't leave me outside when the fire works start even in a fenced in yard.  Or even when some of the kids start shooting off the firecrackers.  I've had fellow dog friends who have accidentally run away from home out of fear from the  noise.  Then they were lost and confused. A few were found by their humans at the shelter the next day.

If you need to let me out, go out with me so I have the comfort of your presence and so if I start to run- you can help me.

ID Please?
My human regularly checks that my ID tags are up to date and on my collar.  Make sure your ID tags are up to date too- oops sorry.   This way, if you get lost, er, if your dog gets lost you can claim him easier or if someone finds me they can contact my human.

Meds. or A Shirt or...
If the noise from the fireworks frighten your dog, you may need to contact your veterinarian for some help. A few common ways to care for your dog is to create an "anxiety wrap" using a T-shirt or purchase a product made for this purpose. Wrapping fabric around an animal can give the pet a feeling of greater security.

Also, I would say as a last resort, your Vet can prescribe tranquilizers or you can use a non-prescription remedies such as Rescue Remedy or Serene-um to calm your dog.

But, PLEASE, be sure to talk with your veterinarian before trying or attempting to use any medications. I am not an expert in this area but he/she is and can help so much better.

Punishing, Scolding, Coddling
Punishing or scolding your dog for his behavior around fireworks isn't a good idea.  It just confuses the guy- and coddling just reinforces the behavior you don't like!   Instead, assume your role as leader and act confident around these noises.  You can reach down and pet his head but not in a manner to condone my behavior.

Crates or Safe Places
My human gave me a really great crate when he adopted me.  You really need to see it- I have his art work on the walls- it's really cool.  I've got a water bowl, pillow, and some blankets there too.  Snoopy has nothing on me!!  The crate is my home within my human's home.  When I just need a break or am scared, I go to my crate or another "safe place."  My human makes sure to leave the crate door unlocked so I can open it and go in when I want.

I have 3 other safe places in my human's house. One of them is in Dad's studio, one in the master bedroom and another in the garage.   The one in the garage is used mostly when my human is working in the front yard and I want to be with him- it is not ideal place to go during fireworks.

My favorite place is his studio. I have a big stuffed pillow with a pillow and blanket that I can lay on.  My human keeps many of my toys and treats here too.  So, I can play, watch TV, listen to CD's or the radio but most of all, my human is there.

You will learn what works best for your dog- my human learned by reading and asking questions and taking the time to get to know me- "his best friend" the perfect dog of the universe.

What do you do to keep your dog safe during the fireworks? Please leave a comment below so others can learn from you!


Anonymous said...

nice posting.. thanks for sharing.

Allen Pearson said...

You're welcome! Happy 4th!