If your dog becomes nervous, fearful, or panicked during loud events like thunderstorms or fireworks, there are a few things you can do to help him remain calm.
- Reassure and comfort
There is a common misconception that if your dog is afraid that if you comfort them you will only reinforce the fear. This really isn’t true and really is the opposite. Reassurance can help to calm your dog.
We wouldn't leave another human or child to be scared and I have never known a human adult or child become more afraid from being comforted. Leaving your dog in that state of fear serves absolutely no purpose whatsoever.
If you know that your dog will be afraid or anxious, coming around fireworks provides them with things they love and enjoy, a special dinner, cuddles or a massage. With the help of a few other tips hopefully they can remain calmer
Play some music.
Play some music, science has shown that using music can help dogs relax. Reggae and classical are commonly used to help dogs. Maybe pair this with a lavender scented candle for a extra calming effect
- Thundershirts are go
For some dogs the feeling of being held tightly can have a great calming effect on them. Thundershirts are clothing that once put on your dog fit really snuggly and make them feel like they are being held. There are other brands also like karmawrap for dogs that don't like things going over their head
Divert your dog’s attention.
If your dog is only mildly worried you can divert their attention away with games. Playing with their favourite toys, training and games with food can distract them from what's going on and hopefully turn their negative association into a positive one.
In houses there is generally a room that is quieter than others. Building a safety bunker in these rooms can really help. If your dog is crate trained you can use this and cover with blankets and duvets to help sound deaden a touch. There can be really long lasting chews like beef scalp, pizzles and pigs ears. Combine with some music and if your dog is comfortable with you near them when they have food, sit by them. Give them reassurance and keep them company. Dogs like to den so this can be to your advantage.
As we said above, seeing your dog in a distressed way really isn't nice. Combining the 5 tips above hopefully you can help soothe your dogs so they are much more comfortable. Sadly fireworks are still going to happen and we definitely can't stop