A brown dog and fireworks superimposed with the flag of the United States with text "Dogs and Fireworks"

The Fourth of July, watermelon eating contests, street festivals, and holiday celebrations. There is something magical about throwing our head back and watching color burst into the night sky. However, Fourth of July fireworks can be a miserable experience for dogs. Fireworks can turn even the toughest, bravest dog into a scaredy-cat. More pets run away on the Fourth of July than any other day of the year.

Why are dogs afraid of fireworks?

A 2013 study by the University of Bristol’s School of Veterinary Sciences found fireworks were the most common trigger for fearful behavior in canines. Responses included: trembling, shaking, hiding, seeking comfort, urination, to name a few.

The American Kennel Club suggests tips to improve dog comfort and safety during fireworks:

• Keep the dog away from fireworks

•  Make sure the dog has proper ID

• Create a safe haven

• Play white noise or turn on the TV

• Provide comfort

• Walk the dog before the fireworks start

• Talk to a vet if the dog’s anxiety is severe

Not all dogs are afraid of fireworks. Make firework season enjoyable for everyone by taking a few minutes to think about it from the dog’s perspective.

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