Monday, 29 June 2020

Firework Safety: How to keep your pet safe on Canada Day

Firework Safety: How to keep your pet safe during fireworks on Canada Day


Firework Safety: Fireworks are scary for your pet. Keep your pets safe this Canada Day
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It's almost Canada Day- a day to celebrate the True North while rocking your red and white, and filling up on poutine and Beaver Tails. Ottawa will not host the usual celebration on Parliament Hill this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, Canadians are allowed to have small gatherings of under 10 people. There will be no big, beautiful fireworks display at the Hill, but some people may still set off backyard fireworks.


Fireworks can be scary for your pet. Most pets get anxiety when they hear fireworks, and it can be very distressing for them. On Canada Day, follow these safety tips to help ensure your pet feels less afraid during the festivities. 


Don't bring your dog to see fireworks

Your dog should not be your plus one to any event that will have fireworks. If you plan on walking your dog on Canada Day, do it before dark to better ensure you won't accidentally stumble on a group setting off fireworks. Keep your pets inside on Canada Day. Dogs should not be left in the backyard after dark and outdoor cats should not be free to roam.


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Consider crating

If your dog is crate trained, consider putting your dog in the crate if you hear fireworks. Crate trained dogs often consider their crates to be their safe space. This can help calm your dog and prevent your dog from running away or hiding. 



Make sure you have updated ID tags and microchip information

The reality is some dogs and cats will be spooked by fireworks and manage to escape. Canada Day can be a really busy time, and pets may wander away further to avoid loud people on the streets. This means you need to have pet identification on your dog or cat, and the contact information needs to be up-to-date. I also recommend that you put a sign up at your door advising people not to let your pet escape if you plan on having people over. When your door is frequently opened and closed, it creates more opportunities for your pet to run off.
Firework Safety: How to keep your pet safe during fireworks this Canada Day


Play white noise or music to drown out the sound

Fireworks are loud- which is the reason why pets are so afraid of them. Help mask the sound by playing white noise or music. I use an app called Relax Melodies for white noise. If you play music or the TV, make sure you play something with soothing tones and sounds. Don't put on an action movie or heavy metal music. 


Consult your veterinarian about sedatives

If your dog or cat suffers from high anxiety regularly, you may want to book an appointment with your veterinarian. Talk to your vet about your concerns and your pet's reactions to loud noises. Your vet may have a safe and effective medication or supplement to prescribe to help ease your pet's stress during the Canada Day festivities.


Try the ThunderShirt

The ThunderShirt is a product that essentially swaddles your pet. The hugging action helps calm some pets. I've had a lot of feedback from dog owners saying that the ThunderShirt really helps with firework induced stress. There is also a ThunderShirt for cats- although some cats who wear it just flop over on their sides, which is hilarious but not an effective tool to reduce anxiety. 

Have a safe and happy Canada Day with your fur-family!



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