Summertime is right around the corner, and as we start to prepare for our favorite time of year, we need to start paying attention to our dog’s emotional well-being as the season comes with all kinds of anxiety triggers. One of the biggest anxiety triggers is fireworks, as just about any dog owner will attest to. Fireworks introduce loud, sudden noises into their awareness, and we can’t convince a dog that they’re not actually in danger. As a result, many of us watch helplessly as our dogs show clear signs of emotional distress, wishing that we could talk them down.
Creating the Right Environment For Your Dog When Those Fireworks Do Go Off
While we can’t explain to a dog that fireworks are not any real cause for concern, what we can do is create as calm of an environment as possible to alleviate the more acute symptoms of anxiety. Follow these tips below to help boost your dog’s feelings of safety and security amidst a fireworks display that’s happening in your neighborhood.
Tip #1: Respect Their Personal Space
First of all, we know that most dog owners mean well, but sometimes we have a tendency to add to their distress without even realizing it. It’s in our instincts to coddle a dog who is displaying symptoms of anxiety, by giving them extra affection and following them around to make sure comfort is close by. While there are some dogs who may respond positively to this, the reality is that most canines actually want space when they’re feeling vulnerable. They may try to hide, and also may not want to be touched. If your dog seems to desire space, respect that as trying to invade that space may make them feel more distressed.
Tip #2: Create a Hiding Place
Like we said, most dogs want to hide when they believe that they’re in danger. Their natural instinct is to find an enclosed area until they feel that the threat has passed. We can support our dog’s natural instincts by creating a hiding place in our homes that they can retreat to in order to feel more secure. Consider purchasing an enclosed dog bed, that they can slip into and feel safe. Or, create some type of enclosed space that feels like an oasis, by converting a closet into a dog cave, creating a fort or using a pop-up tent on days when you know that their anxiety will be triggered.
Tip #3: Maintain a Calm Home
When your dog’s anxiety is already triggered by something like fireworks, it’s extra important to do what you can to keep your home environment as calm as possible. This means avoiding raising your voice or doing anything that makes a lot of noise. Dogs don’t like unpredictability, so on a night when there are fireworks, keep your dog’s routine when it comes to feeding times, outside time, etc., even if your dog chooses to forego certain daily activities because they’re too stressed out.
Tip #4: Play Calming Music
You may be surprised by how much a dog can respond to calming music. Besides the fact that the music can sonically soften the blow of fireworks, it can also have a positive impact on their nervous system. Nowadays, it’s easy to access meditation music that has a soothing effect on our state of mind. A dog can be just as responsive as we are to these calming sounds, and they may even help your dog fall asleep more easily.
Tip #5: Consider Some CBD
By now, you’ve probably heard about the many ways in which CBD can positively impact your dog. Well, here’s another one: a study found that when dogs were given CBD-infused treats, they showed a reduced stress reaction when exposed to loud, sudden noises. This tells us that giving a dog CBD prior to a fireworks display may keep them noticeably calmer when the fireworks are occurring.
Note: Before administering CBD do your canine, speak with your veterinarian first.
Keep These Tips Handy to Soothe Your Dog’s Nerves This Coming Summer
Bottom line, no dog owner likes to see their furry friend in emotional distress, and with fireworks season coming up, it’s time to prioritize their needs by thinking of all of the ways in which we can keep them as calm as possible. If you wish to use CBD as a natural calming aid, explore the CBD oils and dog treats at Chill Paws, which are made specially for canines, with clean ingredients and lab-tested, pure hemp extracts.