According to research from the RSPCA, 62% of dogs in the UK show signs of anxiety when they hear fireworks, which can lead to stress and even injury if your dog tries to escape¹. With this in mind, we have shared some practical tips to help deal with your dog’s anxiety during the festive period.
1. Prepare early for the night
Ensure that your dog has had a good walk in the day before friends and family start to gather and any fireworks are released. Allowing your pup to expel some energy will ensure they are tired in advance of the fireworks, helping them sleep later on.
It’s helpful to stay in with your dog throughout New Year's Eve, offering comfort where they need it. However, if you need to leave your dog alone, prepare some fun activities, such as filling a Kong with tasty treats, to give them an enriching task to focus on.
2. Create a sense of calm within your home
Feelings of anxiety within dogs are very common, and some of the top reasons we hear from our customers include loud noises, fireworks and being left alone.
There are simple ways to adapt your home into a ‘safe haven’ for your pet, such as closing the curtains and windows, using your radio or TV to play some familiar noises and creating a hideaway with their favourite soft toys that they can go to when they feel scared. For dogs who are crate trained, often they will retreat to this space.
Moreover, it’s vital to stick to a usual routine and try to act as if things are normal - if you send positive energy their way, your dog won’t feed off any nervous energy from you too!
It is crucial to look at the cause of the anxiety rather than just dealing with the symptoms. Once you understand what makes your pet nervous, it is much easier to work out ways to reduce their stress by examining their environmental factors.
3. Look to introduce supplements to your dog’s diet
With a 200% increase in online searches for ‘dog anxiety meds’ in the last 12 months², there is an increased demand for products to help with nervousness in dogs.
Our Dorwest Herbs Valerian Compound can be used half an hour before a stressful event and then used regularly throughout the night to help calm your dog down. For best results, you can combine with Calm and Relaxed treats before for an additional relaxing boost. If your dog requires a longer term approach, Dorwest Herbs Scullcap & Valerian Tablets can be used daily to help relieve generalised anxiety.
Natural supplements are a great way to complement the correct environment for your dog and to go alongside a balanced diet of fresh and natural food. During unusually stressful situations, such as Bonfire Night, you may want to try giving your dog a product designed to help reduce stress and anxiety.
These products should never replace a healthy diet or environment, but we find that they work nicely for our pup, Dolly.
For more hints and tips, make sure to follow us on Instagram and Facebook! You can also pop in to see us in our store in Slaithwaite, Huddersfield to discuss your pet queries and we will be happy to help.
With Woofs and Wags,
Laura, Dolly & Reggie
Google Trends data for the last 12 months, correct as of the 18th of October 2022.