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New Years Eve and the Dreaded Fireworks: How to Ease Your Pet’s Anxiety

Please no fireworks image with dog

Fireworks during New Year’s Eve can cause stress and fear in many pets. The loud noises in particular is what makes them anxious and can not only lead to psychological distress but may even cause a pet to hurt themselves physically as they attempt to run or hide from the boom sounds. Here are some tips on how to make your pet as comfortable as possible.

During New Years Eve daytime

Begin the day by taking your dog out for a long walk, run, or hike. Get them tired out before it gets dark outside. The more energy they release throughout the day, the more they will be more relaxed by the end of the night.

Create a safe hiding space for your indoor and outdoor cats. Make sure to close off any unsafe areas that they may get in. Cats hate to be confined, and being placed in small areas can exponentially increase their anxiety, so try not to keep them in small spaces. You can also start weeks in advance by desensitizing them using the same noises in lower
sound frequencies to help them get used to the noise.

cat playing

Once the fireworks begin

Turn on your TV or play calming music that is loud enough to cover up any outside noises. Further distraction can be continued by playing with them so that they are focused on you or adding a treat such as a bone that you know they will enjoy.

If they are lounging around the house, consider closing your curtains or blinds. If they feel comfortable in a crate, you can put a blanket over it.

Use plug in diffusers to release pheromones into your home to help calm your dog’s anxiety. There are also collars available that can be found in pet stores or online that you can put on your dog.

If you are not home during the firework season, find an area in your home your dog can use as a shelter so they have somewhere to hide in. For example, if you know your dog goes under the bed when they get scared, make it as comfortable as possible by adding a blanket, a doggy bed, some toys and treats.

dog under blanket

Still need advice?

If none of the above help alleviate your pets anxiety, consult a veterinarian. A veterinarian can provide advice as well as prescribing anxiety medication if deemed necessary.

Some symptoms to look out for are panting, drooling, restlessness, shaking, wide eyes, digging, and urinating or defecating.

Hello Ralphie has veterinarians available on New Years Eve should you need additional help. 

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