How To Keep Your Pups Calm This Firework Season

Posted on June 27 2024

Fireworks will soon light up the sky. While these are glorious celebrations they can be distressing for our furry friends. Many dogs experience anxiety during these loud events, even summer thunderstorms, but with some preparation and care, you can help your pup stay calm and comfortable!


Understanding Your Dog's Anxiety: Before diving into solutions, it is important to understand why dogs get anxious during loud noises. Research by a team of veterinarians shows that at least 40% of dogs have noise related phobias (Barbara). Fireworks and thunderstorms produce sudden, loud sounds and flashes of light that can startle and frighten dogs. Understanding your pup’s anxiety and fear can result in a closer bond with them.

Here are our favorite strategies to keep your dog relaxed during fireworks and storms this summer.

1. Creating a Safe Space

It is important to prepare a quiet and comfortable area where your dog can retreat during these stressful events. If you are not going to be with your dog during these fireworks or storms make sure they have a safe space away from windows with as much ambient noise as possible.

2. Preparing your Dog

Walking your dog beforehand can help burn off excess energy and allow them to be calmer before the fireworks. Consider also using calming aids such as anxiety wraps or natural supplements like CBD oil or calming chews, but do consult your vet before trying any new products.

3. Desensitization Training

Another strategy to consider is gradually exposing your dog to recordings of fireworks and thunderstorm sounds at a low volume, and rewarding them for calm behavior. Over time, as their reactions get calmer, slowly increase the volume to help your dog become accustomed to these noises. For some people, this strategy is highly effective but for others it just startles their dog . Pay close attention to how your dog is reacting and focus on other strategies if necessary.

4. Stay Calm and Composed

Dogs can sense their owner's emotions. Stay calm and reassuring, as your dog will look to you for cues on how to react. Engage your dog with a favorite toy or music to keep their mind occupied. Spotify even has some great relaxing dog music playlists! We’ve attached our favorite here.

5. Offer Comfort, But Don’t Overdo It

Find a balance between offering comfort and maintaining a sense of normalcy so as to not overwhelm your furry friend. Cuddling your dog may seem like the best thing to do, but cuddling excessively can reinforce their anxious behavior. Our pups often feel most relaxed when massaging in circular motions.

While the 4th of July and summer storms may be a challenging time for our furry friends, being able to prepare and act ahead of time can result in a fun-filled holiday for everyone. Remember, every dog is different, so it may take some trial and error to find what works best for your pup.

Enjoy the holiday and summer season and keep those tails wagging!

Barbara L. Sherman PhD, et al. “Canine Anxieties and Phobias: An Update on Separation Anxiety and Noise Aversions.” Veterinary Clinics of North America: Small Animal Practice, Elsevier, 29 July 2008, www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0195561608001125?via%3Dihub#preview-section-abstract.