July 4th may be fun for people, but for pets – not so much. The booms and explosions of fireworks and neighborhood festivities can cause even normally calm cats, dogs, and other loved pets to feel anxious, stressed, and traumatized.
Think about this - according to a recent study of 13,715 pet dogs (264 different breeds), more than 70% showed signs of anxiety. Noise sensitivity was the most common, with 32% of dogs being highly fearful of at least one noise. For any anxiety-prone pet, July 4th can be horrible.
Sadly, anxiety and fear felt by cats and dogs so spooked by fireworks that they escape yards and homes make July 5th the busiest day of the year for many animal shelters.
We’re here to help empower you with proactive ways to help keep your pets calm, safe, and secure.
First and foremost – recognize the signs your pet is suffering from anxiety
Other signs may be less obvious and can be confused with other types of behavioral problems, such as:
· Excessive barking
· Repeated destructive behavior
· Showing aggression
How to get ahead of July 4th anxiety
Leave Your Pets At Home
As tempting as it may be to bring your dog to a party or your town’s fireworks event, please don’t. Try to see it from their point of view – between having super sensitive hearing, being away from familiar surroundings, and surrounded by chaos – well, it can be terrifying. It will be much more comforting to them to be in their own temperature-controlled home, away from loud noises and excitement.
Create a safe space for your pet to help them feel secure and protected
· Choose a quiet room in the house with secure windows and a door that can be closed
· Include a favorite bed, toys, fresh water, and food
· For cats, provide a place to hide – a kitty tunnel or a box (and of course, a litter box)
· If your pet views a crate or carrier as a safe space, add it to the room
· Turn on a television or play calming music – something that can act as white noise, should things outside get a bit rowdy
Offer hemp-derived CBD
Cannabidiol, also known as CBD, enhances serotonin, the neurotransmitter responsible for calming during stressful/fearful events. This helps pets feel more relaxed.
Keep in mind that stress-inducing events often require a higher dose and more frequent administration of CBD. We suggest offering the first dose early in the day, then repeat every four hours. Approximately an hour before fireworks begin, consider a double dose (or more – up to 10x a normal dose).
Look for full-spectrum and broad-spectrum hard and soft chews, oils, and topical transdermal creams by reputable CBD for pets companies like Holistapet, Pawse, Treatibles, Mount Ara, ElleVet and The Green Pet Shop. If you'd like to find out more about dosage and safety (yes, CBD is safe), feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here’s to a safe, drama-free holiday!
For more pet health and lifestyle information, please visit HealthyPetCoach.com.