I WANT TO HELP MY DOG WITH LOUD NOISES
HOW TO HELP YOUR DOG'S FEAR OF THUNDERSTORMS?
Tips to help your dog cope with thunderstorms
It is very common for dog to be sensitive to loud noises, including thunderstorms and fireworks. While a certain degree of fear during big bangs is normal to keep dogs from danger, it becomes very stressful for you and your dog when this fear is extreme.
How do you know if your dog is terrified by fireworks? It’s pretty easy. Look for: ears back, excessive panting, drooling, shaking, hiding away, barking excessively, house soiling or destruction…
So what can you do?
If you plan well in advance, you can help your dog tolerate the noise with a gradual desensitisation program. That means exposing your dog to sounds of thunder or fireworks, day after day, increasing the volume progressively, and rewarding your dog when he manages to calm down. This can take quite a long time, so better to do it long before or after thunderstorm season.
A few days before anticipated events, there are still many things you can do.
The best way to prepare dogs for loud noises is to think like a dog. They feel scared as they are alarmed by the loud noises of the thunder or fireworks but do not understand that the noise cannot harm them. That’s why they feel safer when they have a hiding space. You can provide your dog with a ‘safe haven’ or a ‘dog den’. If your dog already has a hiding place then this space can be used, making it as snug and secure for your dog as possible by adding blankets or bedding.
If you are making your dog den from scratch, try to do this a few weeks in advance so that your dog knows it is a safe place when thunder or fireworks start.