Bonfire Night can be a traumatic experience for dogs and pups as their ears are much more sensitive to us humans as dogs can hear up to 4 times further than us and at a higher frequency. Needless to say, whizzing bottle rockets and exploding fireworks can be utterly terrifying for you dog, causing a considerable amount of stress.
That’s why City Pups have put together this list of tips for Bonfire Night to help you and your pooch to get through the night without too much distress.
For pups and young dogs, especially if it’s their first Bonfire Night, it is going to be a very confusing and scary night. So they will definitely reply on you for support to get through it.
Being around your puppy, giving them attention, comfort and support is really important. Your presence will be a great reassurance. Really the best thing to do is distract them and act like there is nothing to be scared of. If you aren’t making a big deal out of these noises, why should they?
Comforters & Distractions
Does your dog have a favourite toy? Blanket? Teddy?
Just like children, a comforter can be really useful to establish calm and reassure your dog, possibly take their minds off of it. Playing with your dog can help reassure him, saying that there’s nothing to worry about.
Curtains & A Safe Place
It is a simple tactic that can really reduce stress for you dogs. Close the curtains, some people forget to close out the curtains. People are surprised how effective this tactic is but it removes an element of the evening that could scare your dog, flashing lights. The flashing lights can cause a lot of distress for a dog and simply closing the curtain can help.
If your dog is terrified, they might look for a safe place to hide in. This could be under your bed, behind the sofa or under the stairs, anywhere they can hide and feel safe in. If this is your dog, don’t try to coax them out but let them hide and bare through it. Just be there for them if they want you.
Music & TV
As silly as it sounds, putting on the radio or television on to mask the noise of fireworks can be a clever trick to help reassure your dog. It helps belnds the noise with a television or radio, giving your dog a source for the noise to focus on, rather than bangs and explosions from random places.
Location, location, location, you need to keep in mind your location.
If you are far away from any big bonfire night events or none of your neighbours set off personal fireworks, you’ll find Bonfire Night for your dog won’t be as bad. However, if you’re next door to any events or private parties, you’ll find a very different outcome for the night.
If you have a friend, far from the noise and familiar with your dogs, see if they would look after them for the night. That would be a better option rather trying to tough it out.
A constant hug!
The Thunder Shirt is a clever solution that has a ‘calming effect for over 80% of dogs’. The shirts apply light, constant pressure to your pup, almost like swaddling a child to help them feel secure and calm.
And Most Important of All
Keep your doors and windows closed!
Dogs have been known to bolt out of open doors and windows, disappearing into the night. Even if your dog is does not have any tendencies to wander off by themselves, do not chance it, it’s just isn’t worth the risk.
Keep them confined whenever you open an outside door or window.