A Practical Guide to Firework Safety for Dogs
The 4th of July is right around the corner, and you know what that means? FIREWORKS!
As much as humans love the sparkles in the sky, you know who doesn’t like fireworks? DOGS!
Independence Day is the most popular day for pets to go missing in the U.S., and Hawaii is no different than the mainland in this case.
As a dog mom, I know how heartbreaking it is to see your dog scared out of their minds with all the firework festivities going on outside. To be honest, I hate fireworks and I hate even more the stress it causes our beloved furry family members.
If you’re new to dog parenting or a veteran dog parent, this post will help you learn some helpful tips and tricks to keep your dogs safe during holiday celebrations that involve fireworks.
This blog is all about firework safety for dogs.
Firework Safety Tips & Tricks for Dog Parents
Keep Your Dog Indoors.
The most responsible thing any dog parent can do is to keep their dog safe and secure inside their home.
Consider feeding dinner earlier than usual and try to get all activities (playtime, walks, etc.) before the sun goes down and all the festivities kick-off.
Need to take your dog outside for a quick potty break? Make sure any gate doors or fences are securely shut.
Need to take them on a short walk around the block?
Ensure that your leash is fully functional, with no rips or tears, and that your dog’s collar and/or harness are securely on them with ID tags if your dog takes off by an unexpected firework or loud noise.
DON’T take them to any outdoor firework displays; you’re just asking for disaster.
It doesn’t matter if your dog has never reacted to the sounds of fireworks in the past.
You should never bank that your dog will always be okay with the sounds of fireworks.
DO NOT Leave Your Dog Outside.
The sounds of fireworks are terrifying to some dogs and can sound like all hell is breaking loose with the sky falling.
If your dog is easily scared by loud noises, their “fight or flight” instincts will kick in, and many will choose “flight” as their best option to run and try to find a safe place.
By leaving your dog outside, you not only increase their chances of running away and going missing, but your dog could suffer a severe medical reaction, like a heart attack, because they are so scared.
There have been many dogs who have died because they were literally scared to death.
Also if you purposely leave your dog outside, it makes you a total asshole…I said what I said.
Microchip Your Dog.
Let’s face it, sometimes collars and/or tags can fall off our dogs, especially if running through bushes or other shrubberies.
In the event your dog takes off, make sure they have a microchip as a sure-fire way to identify your pup.
Double-check with your pup’s microchip company so all your contact information is up-to-date, and they have your most current contact information on file. This is especially important if you have recently moved or may have changed phone numbers.
If your pup is found and taken to a local vet or humane society, you want them to be able to contact you after they have been scanned right away so you can be successfully reunited with your dog.
DID YOU KNOW? As of July 1, 2020, all pets (dogs and cats) MUST have a microchip per the City & County of Honolulu, Hawaii, on the island of Oahu.
Give Your Dog a Safe Place.
Give your dog (or any other species you may have as a pet) a safe place inside your home or in a secured garage if they cannot be inside your home.
If you notice that the bathroom, closet, a kennel, or a specific bedroom is one of your pup’s first “go-to” places to run to feel safe, then set them up in that area with a bed, blanket, or anything that they could comfortably lay down and try to relax.
Consider turning on a radio with classical or a dog calming music playlist from Spotify or stream a dog-friendly channel like DOGTV on an iPad or laptop to help drown out the noise from outside.
Try Calming Aids.
Many products in the pet industry market today caters to helping anxious dogs, like Thundershirt, CBD Treats or supplements, pet-friendly essential oils, and noise-canceling headphones like Pawnix.
Check out some of the products available or at your local stores to see what you can use to help take the edge off your dog during stressful times.
Sometimes your pup may need one or a combination of products to feel better, so don’t be disappointed or discouraged if one product doesn’t do the trick.
Every dog is different (just like humans), so your pup might need various methods to help get the job done.
In some cases, your fur kid may need a little something more substantial like prescription medication from your veterinarian, so be sure to call in to get any medication as soon as possible to avoid not having anything when those stressful moments start up.
When using any calming aids or medication, it’s important to remember to give your dog any supplement or medicines BEFORE they get too anxious and are out of sorts.
Suppose your dog’s adrenaline is already pumping and they are stressed out. In that case, any supplement or medication may take much longer to kick in or be rendered ineffective altogether.
Remember that although you may love all the firework fun, your pup might not be as enthusiastic about the fun as you are. Be kind to your furry ohana and set yourselves up for a safe holiday night.