Fireworks and Dogs

It’s that time of year again. Juneteenth is here and July 4th is around the corner and, while Americans celebrate the end of slavery and our independence, many of our canine companions wish we would stop with the fireworks. The beautiful colors that light up the night sky are enjoyable for humans to see but the noise that accompanies them often leads to fearful behavior in our dogs.

If you have a dog who is afraid of fireworks, please make an appointment to speak with your vet. There are several medications your veterinarian can prescribe that can help your dog make it through this time of year without feeling anxious, fearful, or in a state of panic. It is a good idea to test the medication beforehand to see how your dog responds. During those times when your dog is likely to hear fireworks, playing white noise or music similar to what is heard on the YouTube channel Relax My Dog can help drown out some of the noise from nearby celebrations. A box fan can also be helpful. If your dog enjoys snuggling near you, finding it comforting and safe, spend this time in their company.

If you have recently brought a dog into your home and are not sure how he or she will respond, use the above suggestions of ways to drown out the outside noise. Your dog may enjoy playing tug or other fun games with you as a way to distract them from the noise. Best to spend the time as far away from the celebrations as possible in your home.

One of my dogs would panic at the sound of fireworks, which was rather loud considering they were set off at the park near our home. She would embed herself in the smallest corner or area under furniture she could find, entangling herself in cords and shaking unrelentingly. Thankfully our vet prescribed medication that allowed her to settle near one of us and relax. Not only did medication help, but we were and still are with our current dog, careful about trips outside to potty.

Eileen Anderson has a wonderful blog post to this point: and if you search her blog for other related articles, there are many gems that are quite helpful.