June, July and August are known as the official months of camping season; the family get away, road trips and vacations, season. We celebrate the first day of summer, 4th of July, baseball, picnics, barbecues and other gatherings, all events that will get us out of the heat and into a good time.
During any celebration it’s easy to forget that pets have a different level of tolerance than humans for excitement.
Loud noises from crowds, fireworks, thunderstorms or other big sounds can frighten and stress pets, giving them anxiety.
Karen Pryor of Clicker Training says, “While some breeds of dogs may be more prone to fear of loud noises than others, it is more likely that temperament and past experience will influence a dog’s sensitivity and reactivity. Dogs that have not been exposed to a variety of sounds or experiences—or rescue, shelter, and/or abused dogs with tough times in their pasts—are vulnerable to the fear of thunderstorms and fireworks, and are at risk for other scares, too!”
Responses to these stressors can be equally traumatic. “Dogs can indicate their fear in a variety of ways, with symptoms ranging from minor to extreme. Some common symptoms of fear can include: shaking, whining, hiding, pacing, urinating or defecating, or destroying property or items that a dog might otherwise leave alone.”
What Karen and other pet experts suggest is ideally minimize the noise (of course) and if you can’t, white noise machines can drown out the stressful sound. As mentioned in our previous post about pets, rhythmic sounds that provide comfort such as rotating fan or white noise, can help ease anxiety along with attentiveness and care to help reinforce feelings of safety and security.
If the anxiety from what would be considered a stressful event for your pet, persists over a few days be sure to check in with your vet. Getting back into a normal sleeping routine, in addition to extra TLC can help calm them and makes for a better living space for you and your fur-friend.