The 4th of July bursts with celebration. We all know the days are hot and long, and when that sun goes down, everyone is geared up to see the sparks fly…everyone but our pets that is.
Our feline, equine, canine, porcine (you get the picture) friends start to shake and startle with the first snappers and whistle funnels we humans delight in so much. They feel scared, confused, and just want to get away from it all!
Both of our dogs get especially frightened, and one of them put a gash in his leg trying to escape the fenced yard we had thought would keep him secure during the New Year’s festivities earlier this year.
With a little preparation and attention to detail, we can help our pets cope with the trauma of July 4th fireworks.
Here are three simple ways to help make this 4th of July less stressful.
Prepare a safe place – whether your pets are inside or outside, they all have their special spots where they feel comfortable and safe. Ideally you would be able to confine them to an area where they couldn’t escape (or attempt to leap over tall fences and get all busted up). A nook in the house or on an enclosed porch can be comforting and will keep them from running off and getting lost. Place their favorite pillows or toys in their special spot a day or more ahead of time if possible. Feed them in their special spot before things start popping, and make sure they have plenty of water. You’ll want to clear the area of sharp or delicate objects in case your pet starts to jump or scamper around.
Relaxation and Reassurance – your pets will be wondering what the heck is going on and looking to you for reassurance. If possible, give them a nice rub down or good petting before things get going. You can use a little lavender spray or oil externally to help them relax. If you use oil, be sure to follow the product guidelines, as some essential oils can be strong. After things have cooled down, reassure them again with more love and petting, and tell them they did well. If you are home, and it seems helpful, you can also spend time with them during the festivities; this can be a great opportunity for deep bonding.
Check the yard for debris – strange objects in the grass can be tempting to our pets, and if they are feeling out of sorts, they may ingest something they shouldn’t. Be sure to do a sweep of the driveway, yard, and any other areas your pet has access to for fireworks wrappers, ashes, and debris. By July 5th you and your pet should be able to enjoy the long hot days of summer again, knowing you got through another round of fireworks frenzy.
HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY