Summer fireworks and thunderstorms will arrive before long -- even though it is still snowing in Idaho!!
July 4th is often the worst day of the year for dogs, and it can be extremely stressful for people, too. It is heartbreaking to hear of dogs that got frightened and ran away, scaled the fence, or jumped out of the car. These situations are made even more challenging if the dog does not have identification tags and/or a microchip.
The hierarchy I think of is: Safety, Management and Training/Education. The most important thing you can do is to be sure your dog has a collar and identifying tags on, and to Plan: who’s going to be with the dog and where, what favorite enrichment items can be around, might medication help, and much more.
If your dog becomes scared, comfort him/her. You won’t reinforce the fear. Then at a different time, with the help of a force-free trainer if necessary, training/education can help your dog (and you!) overcome the stress and fear.
If you'd like help preparing to support your dog (and minimize your stress, too!), do reach out. I'm happy to consult with you for planning and support and to work with your dog to decrease their noise sensitivity.
Did you know that dog's most important sense is olfactory, i.e., smell? Dogs take in their world by sniffing -- it provides information and enrichment. So when you're out with your dog, try letting them sniff as much as they want. A sniffing expedition, or Sniffari, will tire your dog out and help them feel content and relaxed.
Many of us get to spend more time with our dogs these days -- a silver lining in the Covid19 situation! As always, just be sure that your dog has a quiet place to take a break from the action if they choose.
Our local healthcare workers say they appreciate the nightly 8pm howls in their honor. It’s fun to see dogs get in on the action, too! However, many dogs (and people) are frightened by fireworks and other loud noises. Please be mindful and respectful. No one – 2-legged or 4-legged -- needs additional stress.