By: Kevin Curnow
Now that the Independence Day weekend is here, most Americans will have a great time enjoying elaborate fireworks displays. However, loud noises can be your pet’s worst enemy. According to Jan Hoffman of the New York Times, “At least 40 percent of dogs experience noise anxiety, which is most pronounced in the summer.”1 Moreover, “Animal shelters report their busiest day for taking in runaway dogs is July 5.”1 Here are some tips to keep your dog calm this holiday weekend.
The easiest way to soothe an anxious pet is medication. Some veterinarians suggest sedatives, however those only work as an immediate fix and don’t prevent future anxiety. Recently, a new drug called SILEO has been launched, becoming the first and only medication approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for treatment of noise aversion in dogs.2
For those that are not interested in medication, other common pacifiers are based on distraction. Keep your dog in a cozy windowless room with all their favorite toys. There are even sound therapy and desensitization CDs, Through a Dog’s Ear and Canine Noise Phobia (CNP), specifically designed for Fido.3 Similar to human babies, human companionship is recommended and soothing anti-static vests like the Thundershirt and Storm Defender can help too.4 If all else fails, try and give your dog as much exercise throughout the day to try and wear them out so that they might sleep through the patriotic displays. We should all remember that dogs’ senses are much more heightened than humans, especially hearing.
- From “A New Treatment for Dogs Scared by Thunder and Fireworks” by Jan Hoffman New York Times originally published June 28, 2016 http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2016/06/28/why-thunder-and-fireworks-make-dogs-anxious/?_r=0
- From “Zoetis Announces Launch of SILEO® for Treatment of Noise Aversion in Dogs” by Zoetis originally published May 16, 2016 http://news.zoetis.com/press-release/companion-animals/zoetis-announces-launch-sileo-treatment-noise-aversion-dogs
- From “10 Safety and Calming Tips for Dogs During Fireworks” by Lisa Spector Victoria Stilwell Positively originally published June 10, 2012 https://positively.com/contributors/10-safety-and-calming-tips-for-dogs-during-fireworks/
- From “6 Ways to Help Ease Your Dog’s Fear of Loud Noises” by Stephanie St. Martin Care.com https://www.care.com/a/6-ways-to-help-ease-your-dogs-fear-of-loud-noises-1206290937