WATCH OUT! More dogs run away on the 4th of July than any other day of the year!! Hi Everyone! So....it's begun. Last night my neighbors decided to light
off some fireworks, just a bit early in the season! Ella's reaction was predictable, she ran next to me and started to shiver. Then it was off to her 'safe place', under the bed! She's also afraid of thunder and lightening, but when that happens she wants to go outside for some reason. Over 20% of dogs have noise phobias. Pets that are afraid of of thunder usually have fears of other loud noises making the 4th of July an especially tough time for dogs and their owners. Ella usually just shivers, but some dogs with extreme noise phobias will go so far as to hurt themselves running through glass windows or even chewing on doors trying to get away. How can you help your pet? Years ago vets would prescribe tranquilizers for dogs with noise phobias. Today there are much better medications available (benzodiazepines) although they usually need to be taken before the noise which is hard to predict when it comes to thunderstorms, especially here in Colorado! Dog owners have also desensitized their dog to loud noises, usually by having the dog listen to recordings of the noises they are fearful of, starting at low volumes and gradually increasing the volume with treats as rewards along the way. I never knew this! Mother dogs produce a pheromone that helps calm puppies. You can purchase products like collars, sprays and plug-ins that duplicate the scent of the pheromone at local pet stores. Music can also help calm a pets nerves! There are youtube channels full of music designed to keep a pet calm. Harps seem to be very soothing to dogs, also a radio that is playing 'white noise' - the noise you hear between channels, can have a calming effect. Okay, hope you found this informative, and Happy 4th everyone!