Fireworks are an essential part of Independence Day celebrations. In 2014, Americans lit up 225 million pounds of fireworks (Source: The American Pyrotechnics Association). Every year, adults and children all across the U.S.A. sit under the night sky and cheerfully await the dazzling displays of fireworks as we celebrate our nation’s independence.
But for our furry friends, it can be a very stressful event. Cats and dogs have much sharper senses than humans, and loud noises can be particularly unsettling for them. So how can you make your pet more comfortable this 4th of July?
Bring them inside for the night. If your pet is an indoor/outdoor animal, be sure to bring them inside well before the firework displays begin. By bringing them inside, you greatly reduce the risk of your pet running away or injuring themselves in fear. Also, the shelter of your home will help muffle the noise.
Set aside a cozy, quiet area for your pet. Ideally, pick a room without a window, or if there is a window, be sure to draw the curtains in order to block out the light resulting from the fireworks. Fill the area with your pets favorite blanket, bed, toys, and be sure they have plenty of food and water. If your animal will be in a crate, the same tips apply, but also try covering the crate with a breathable blanket to further dampen loud noises.
Use anxiety supplements and medication if necessary. If your pet has a history of anxiety, it might be worth looking into supplements and medication. Check the medication and treat aisle of your local pet store for anxiety relief treats or supplements. But if that won’t do the trick, talk to your vet about the possibility of medication for stressful events.
Check on your pet as often as possible. If you plan on being out during the evening, be sure to check on your pet as soon as you get home. But if you will be home, take the time to sit with your pet and comfort them periodically. Your presence in itself can be very soothing to your pet. Cats are more prone to hide when they are upset. If your cat has found a safe and comfortable hiding space, leave them be.
Turn on the television or some calming music. Constant noise will help drown out the commotion of the fireworks.
Follow these steps for a safer, happier Independence Day for both you and your pet.