Shaking or trembling - this should be easy to spot, but it’s always worth being extra vigilant on Bonfire Night.
Pacing the room - is your dog more agitated than usual? Try to help them settle down (more on this later).
Panting or drooling - you expect this when they’ve been exercising, but if they’ve not been out for a while, this is a tell-tale sign that they’re anxious.
Tucking their tail between their legs - another easy one to spot.
Pushing their ears back - a more subtle sign that they’re feeling fearful.
Wide eyes - as above, a little clue that you can easily miss.
Clinging to their human - are they constantly by your side all of a sudden? Chances are your pooch is frightened.
Hiding or cowering, or refusing to move - the opposite of point two; one minute your dog might be strolling around anxiously, the next they’re hiding away as they’ve become more upset.
Excessive or unusual barking - spotting this all depends on how vocal your dog usually is.
Potty accidents - if your dog is otherwise well trained, it’s clear that the noise outside has left them out of sorts.
Chewing, digging, or scratching - we’ve got plenty of dog chews that can give your pooch something to gnaw at as a way to release their tension. Try to present it to them before they sink their teeth into your sofa!
Bolting or trying to escape from the home - ALWAYS be extra careful during fireworks season; ensure doors are locked and your home is secure.
Natural calming agents can be effective.
Some dog collars are designed to alleviate stress and reduce barking.
Never reprimand or punish a dog for being scared, and don’t ignore them if they approach you for comfort (that does mean you might have to let your Rottweiler sit on your lap, I’m afraid!)
Cotton balls can be popped in your pooch’s ears if they really suffer during firework displays, which will lessen the noise for them. Just remember to take them out once the fireworks have died down!
Earmuffs are not just for humans…
Distracting your dog - playing fetch or tug - will keep them occupied and focused on something other than the scary banging going on overhead.
A snug shirt can comfort anxious dogs, by evoking the sensation of a hug. A ‘pressure wrap’ is anything that wraps around the dog’s torso and chest to provide a constant, gentle pressure.
Exercise your dog before any planned firework displays happen - leaving the energy that might have been directed at anxious behaviours fully depleted.
There are radio stations that provide specially tailored programmes during peak times when fireworks are likely to be going off. Classic FM’s Pet Classics is a great option for dog owners.
VetIQ Serene-UM Calming Tablets for Cats and Dogs
Pet Remedy Part Season Survival Kit
Pet Remedy Calming Wipes
Thundershirt Anxiety Dog Coat
Beaphar Calming Collar