Fireworks and Fido: The 4th of July’s impact on dogs

By: DogTrekker Staff
Dog with fireworks in background

The trauma of fireworks

A surge in lost pets

The fear and anxiety caused by fireworks can be so severe that more pets go missing around the 4th of July than any other time of year. Shelters across the country report a 30-60% increase in lost pets each year between July 4th and 6th, making July 5th, sadly, one of the busiest days of the year for animal shelters.

Strategies to keep dogs calm

Despite the distress fireworks can cause, there are several strategies that can help keep dogs calm:

  • Create a safe haven
  • Find a quiet, insulated place in your home where your pet can retreat when the noise becomes too much.
  • Show affection
  • Petting your dog with long, firm strokes can help ease some of its stress.
  • Use lavender oil
  • Lavender oil, known for its anxiety-reducing properties, can be dabbed under a dog’s nose or collar to help keep them calm.
  • Consider a pet hotel
  • If you’re traveling, a small pet hotel or boarding facility can be ideal for anxiety-prone dogs.
  • Exercise your dog early
  • Take your dog out for physical activity early in the day to avoid the nighttime fireworks and help tire your dog out sooner.
  • Use white noise
  • Leaving the TV on in the background or putting on some music can help mask some of the louder, harsher sounds your pet might hear throughout the night.
  • Microchip your pet
  • The injectable implant, which gives your pet a unique identification number, will improve your chances of being reunited, in the event your pet ends up fleeing the home in fear.
  • Stay vigilant
  • Many pets run away from home in the midst of fireworks going off. Even people who aren’t pet owners can help pets stay safe by remaining vigilant.

While the 4th of July is a time of celebration for us, it’s important to remember that our furry friends may not share our enthusiasm for fireworks. By taking a few precautions, we can help ensure that our pets stay safe and calm during the festivities.


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