While we are celebrating the Fourth of July with fireworks, our pets are not enjoying themselves. One of the most terrifying evenings will result in many pets ending up in animal emergency rooms, shelters or killed on roads from trying to escape from the frightening sounds. Dogs and cats are particularly sensitive to the loud noises from firecrackers, noisy party sounds from revelers and loud music. The stress from these sounds can cause stomach upset, loss of appetite, and disorientation.
Creekbend Property Management has compiled a list of tips to help your pets stay safe and calm while you enjoy the Fourth of July festivities.
- Confining Your Pet
Many pets have a favorite hiding place where they go when they are frightened. If they have been crate trained, it can lend a feeling of safety and security. If not, using a crate can be more stressful and may even injure your pets teethe or nails trying to get through the crate door. Place your pets in a room where they cannot hurt themselves or damage your belongings.
- Using Positive Noise to Distract Your Pet
Even if you have not been using noise conditioning before now, you can still try using a distraction noise to help cover up the alarming sounds. Calm classical music can help to relieve many animals’ anxiety. Turn the music up to a comfortable volume to drown out some of the party sounds. Some pets also like to watch TV. If they have a favorite show, record it so you can play it for several hours at a time.
- Natural Calming Therapies for Pets
For dogs, lavender oils have been found to reduce car anxiety in dogs can be helpful(make sure the oil has the name Lavendula augustifolia or Lavendula officinalis). Try spraying the lavender oil on your dog’s favorite blanket. ProQuiet, a chewable tryptophan tablet, or in syrup form, can help in calming dogs and cats.
For cats, many owners find that Feliway sprays are very helpful, it is a synthetic copy of the facial pheromone cats use to mark their territory as safe and secure. It can be used as a plug-in room diffuser, or as a spray.
- Exercise Your Pet to Calmness
Get your dog outside to a park (or equivalent) for as much exercise as he/she can handle. For cats, plan out your day to spend time with feather wands, laser pointing toys, etc… to keep your feline friend moving as long as you can before the evening’s partying begins. Hopefully, when the noise starts, your pet will be too “dog tired” to get very stressed out.
- Distract Your Pet With Toys and Games
Give your dog some food puzzles to play with during the time when there will be a lot of noise, or get a few toys for him/her to play with.
For cats, try spritzing catnip spray on the new toy to keep him interested, and for dogs, stuff a puzzle toy with peanut butter to keep their attention focused
- Talk to Your Veterinarian
If your pet’s doctor is already familiar with your pet’s issue, you may be able to have your vet prescribe anti-anxiety medicine for your pet. Don’t wait till last minute to talk to your vet about your pet’s anxiety. Veterinarians will not call in a last minute prescription for a pet that has not been previously diagnosed with noise anxiety.
- Leave the Neighborhood for the Night
If you have any friends or family who live in a quiet place, pack up what your pet will need to spend an overnight away from home. If nothing else, you can find an out of the way, pet-friendly hotel to crash in for the night.
- Don’t Hold Back on Comforting Your Pet
Imagine how you would want to be treated if you were feeling a high level of anxiety. Would you want to be ignored and brushed aside? The best thing you can do for your pet when he or she is anxious is to stay calm-show your pet by example that there is nothing to be afraid of-speak soothingly, show lots of calm affection, and give treats when he or she is being calm. Some pets will learn from this that as long as you are near they are safe and they may stop being as clingy.
Creekbend Property Management wishes you and your furry loved ones a happy, calm, and safe July 4th!
Creekbend Property Management is located in Charleston, SC specializing in rental properties in downtown Charleston, James Island, Isle of Palms, Johns Island, Kiawah, Mt. Pleasant, Summerville, Goose Creek, Moncks Corner, North Charleston, and West Ashley. We are licensed and insured, providing leasing services, management services, maintenance, and most importantly; giving our property investors peace of mind!