Happy Independence Day
At Southeastern Guide Dogs, our dogs deliver independence every single day for our graduates. As we celebrate the 4th of July, let’s remember those who fought for freedom’s sake. Be aware of neighbors who may be combat veterans, whose PTSD may be triggered by fireworks. If you plan on launching fireworks in your neighborhood, let the people around you know. It’s a courtesy that could prevent a flashback episode for a veteran struggling with the effects PTSD.
As for dogs, most dogs do not enjoy fireworks like their humans do. Here are a few tips to calm your dog this 4th of July. The most obvious tip is this: don’t bring your dog with you to a fireworks display. Below are more calming tips that may help make this 4th of July a happier one for your dog.
- Start early in the day and tire your dog out. Lots of exercise earlier in the day means your dog will be more calm later that evening. During exercise, make sure your dog does not become overheated in the summer temperatures and has access to plenty of water.
- Give the gift of you. While fireworks are booming outside, if possible, remain home with your dog.
- Create a quiet, safe spot for your dog to lay low. A crate in an interior room is a good option. If an interior room is not available, be sure to close curtains and doors, and even cover the crate.
- Create a fun distraction. Fill a Kong with a frozen treat, for example, and give it to your dog right before the fireworks begin.
- Use aromatherapy. Essential oils that may soothe your dog include chamomile, jasmine, or lavender, and there are several ready-made canine-calming products on the market.