Dogs and fireworks: What Can I Give My Dog For Fireworks Anxiety?
We love to celebrate the holidays – and it’s not just the New Year’s or the 4th of July, we love celebrating our holidays with a bang. But not everyone’s happy whenever we light up the skies with fireworks, some of our faithful canine companions feel very differently when it comes to these events. It’s pretty common to see them running and hiding in pure terror and we will never know exactly how much anxiety it causes them.
So how can we help our dogs during these times? Is there a way for us to ease their anxiety and give them the kind of care and calmness they deserve?
Why is My Dog Scared of Fireworks?
There are a number of factors that can answer this question. But let’s put this simply: sudden loud noises can be scary. C’mon, even humans get startled by this, right?
Natural survival instincts typically tells you—or your dog—that sudden loud noises mean there is something unusual going on. Adrenaline is released, the heart starts pounding, and suddenly, your dog is on high alert, not knowing or understanding fully what’s going on. The fight or flight response starts kicking in, and in most of these cases, the flight response wins.
Other reasons dogs experience anxiety over fireworks could be because of: past experiences and genetic predisposition. If you have a rescue, you wouldn’t really know how his life was before you found each other. He could have experienced abuse—whether verbally or physically, or both. They get easily startled by sudden noises.
On the other hand, years of studies have observed several breeds to be more vulnerable to fireworks anxiety than the rest. Breeds that have been trained for hunting or work are quite used to loud noises. Their training often included exposure to gunshots, yelling, and any other forms of loud sounds on a daily basis. These include Labrador Retrievers, Beagles, Golden Retrievers, Shiba Inu, Pointers, and American Foxhounds.
What are the Symptoms of Dog Firework Anxiety?
It doesn’t take an expert to identify a dog experiencing fireworks anxiety. The signs and symptoms are clear as day. Of course it varies in symptoms and severity, but you’ll easily spot it in a single look. These include:
- Cowering in a corner/under a couch or bed
- Involuntary urination
- Shaking and trembling
- Unexplained drooling
- Seeking for your comfort and attention
- Aimless running
- Incessant barking/whimpering
While the effects of fireworks anxiety does not last forever, it’s still quite unsettling to see your dog suffer for hours and experience the same kind of distress every single time as if it’s always happening for the first time.
What is CBD and How Does it Work?
Cannabidiol is a natural compound found from hemp plants, but with proper extraction, the THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) is eliminated from the extract and makes it safe to use without the psychoactive high. The CB1 receptor in the brain responds well to CBD. This is one of two receptors in the body that responds well to CBD and promotes the desired effects.
CBD has been observed to help dogs get relief from fireworks anxiety. It is a long-known fact that CBD is helpful for both people and animals to relax and achieve a calmed state. Note however, that because the FDA has yet to provide its final ruling on CBD use, this is not meant and should not be used to cure or treat any disease.
Can People Use CBD For Calming Fireworks Anxiety In Dogs?
Pet Hemp Company CBD oil products are a natural compound and fast-acting. It has helped many owners provide relief to their pets with anxiety. Dogs have natural receptors in their bodies that allow CBD to work their intended functions.
How to Calm My Dog with Cannabidiol?
If you’re considering using CBD to help your dog with his fireworks anxiety, we’d recommend that you give him a dose a couple of hours before the scheduled fireworks start. It will take a bit of time before CBD gets fully absorbed in the digestive system and release the intended effects.
CBD is not a single form, there are several product types that you can use for your dog. These include treats and CBD oil drops. The only difference between these two is how you administer it to your dog. Treats are a great choice if your dog is difficult when it comes to taking medicine. These taste and smell like regular treats and dogs will love them just the same. On the other hand, CBD oil drops can be mixed into their food or administered directly into their mouths.
Proper dosing depends on a number of things. This includes their total body mass and how bad their anxiety is. Good quality CBD products not only is effective in providing relief, but it also provides owners like you a clear guide on the dosage your dog may need. Most of all, your veterinarian will be able to best guide you on the proper dosage your dogs need to relieve them of firework anxiety.
Other Remedies to Help Calm Your Dog During the 4th of July
Giving your dog CBD is only one of many things you can do for your anxious dog during fireworks days. Apart from CBD, you can do other things to help prevent or make fireworks anxiety easier for your dog to handle. These include:
Keeping Your Dog Indoors – get in early and lock up, close and seal your doors and windows to at least muffle the sounds and sudden noises. This will also prevent your dog from running away if and when they get startled.
Distracting Your Dog – do what your dog is used to such as music or tv at home. You can crank up the volume to a tolerable level. The exposure to the constant sound may distract them from the fireworks outside.
Provide Your Dog with a Safe Place to Hide – if you’re in an area with a lot of fireworks exposure, perhaps consider keeping your dog in a safe place such as your bedroom or bathroom. Not to keep them isolated and alone, but a place where you can minimize hearing the noises.
Give Your Dog Comfort Items – giving them their favorite toys, pillows, or even treats would be a good way to provide comfort and distraction.
Positive Reinforcement – when your dogs knows you’re always around, they’ll feel more at ease. You can also talk to them calmly and they’ll feel reassured and not anxious.
Run Away to the Country – if you live in a very noisy neighborhood, you can always decide to take a trip away to the country or somewhere more quiet. Not only will your dog appreciate it, you’ll also have the opportunity to enjoy some quiet time.
Natural Herbs For Calming Your Dog – if you have very limited choices you can consider during these days, you can always resort to something non-toxic and all-natural such as CBD oils, valerian, chamomile, and lavender.
How To Find Your Dog If It Runs Away From Fireworks
First and foremost, always make sure to have your dog’s tag updated. This is important even without fireworks anxiety. If your dog has experienced fireworks anxiety a couple of times and tends to run each time, you may want to consider having him microchipped. However, if you feel that this option might be too much for your dog, then perhaps consider a collar with GPS tracking. That way, it’ll be very easy for you to track his whereabouts in case he finds a way to run out of your property.
It’s not an easy thing to watch when your dog has fireworks anxiety. Yes, fireworks are not a regular thing and only happens a couple of times each year, just like the 4th of July. But it doesn’t take away the fact that it’s distressing for your dog. So if you don’t want to introduce artificial chemicals, CBD oil is the best non-toxic solution for you and your best friend.