Anxiety In Dogs
For a lot of Americans, the July 4th Holiday means fun, family and fireworks. But for our beloved canine companions it can be a time of unrelenting fear, emotional terror and cowering under the bed covers.
It’s important to remember that Independence Day celebrations, while exciting & enjoyable for humans, can be a very frightening, stressful situation for our pets.
While some dogs may never be bothered by the sights and sounds of fireworks displays, others may become extremely frightened by the barrage of peculiar noises, bright flashing lights and large crowds of unfamiliar people.
Even small sparklers and firecrackers by family members or neighbors can be severely unsettling to dogs. Dogs that are normally calm and at ease can easily become anxious, fearful and panicky during these traditionally festive gatherings. Treatment for dog anxiety is especially important for dogs with ‘noise-phobias’.
Fireworks are a traditional celebration during Independence Day so be sure to take extra care to keep your dog safe. Certainly, you don’t want to intentionally frighten your pet or put him in a situation where he might bolt or become overly aggressive due to unrestrained panic & fear, but many dogs can be spooked and overreact to sudden unexpected noises like the clap of thunder or the reverberating sound of exploding fireworks.
The Shameful Truth About Lost Pets
Whether your next-door neighbor sets off a single firecracker or your community is enjoying a big fireworks display, the percussive noise associated with July 4th celebrations can cause your dog to become frantic and run away, trying to escape to a safe haven.
Unfortunately, each year, between July 4th and July 6th, Animal Control Officials across the country report a 30% increase in lost and runaway pets.
In fact, July 5th is one of the busiest days of the year for animal shelters taking in lost pets. Sadly, according to nationwide statistics, only 14% of pets lost during the July 4th Holiday are ever returned to their owners–And worse, 30-60% of lost pets are euthanized because they cannot be properly identified and returned to their original homes!
The reality of this sorrowful situation is that this needless loss of life of our beautiful companions is all-too-often avoidable with some simple preventive actions & early treatment steps.
Treatment For Anxious Dogs
The Time to Start is NOW!
With a little advance planning, you can prevent problems with your pet over the July 4th holiday. It will be much easier for you and your family to relax and enjoy the celebrations if you’re not worrying about your pet’s health and safety.
In addition to the customary steps, you’d take to ensure your dog is comfortable during this July’s firework season, consider adding CBD-rich hemp to your dog’s daily routine now to help minimize the physical side effects from thunderous noise during the holidays.
Natural Treatment for Dog Anxiety
Since Cannabidiol is from an organic, plant-based phytonutrient with zero harmful side effects we can assume that supplementing your dog’s diet with CBD now is a safer, more effective pre-event prevention of sensory disturbances compared to traditional prescription medications like Diazepam.
By starting to dose your dog with CBD in the days and weeks prior to the July 4th Holiday you can begin the intimate process to discovering your dog’s optimum Sweet Spot of therapeutic action. Knowing your dog’s effective dose takes time and diligence but it’s worth it to minimize their fear-reaction to the deafening sounds of fireworks.
In addition to preventing the onset of anxiety and ‘noise-phobia’ fear reactions in our best friends, CBD for dogs can also help support the physical symptoms associated with loud noises including shaking, vocalizing (barking or howling), excessive drooling, looking for a place to hide, or lethal escape attempts.
CBD, in these cases, acts as a potent antioxidant which can protect your dog’s brain and Central Nervous System (CNS) from further material damage due to “frightful” auditory insults.
5 Simple Tips for Keeping Your Pets Safe During Fireworks:
By following these simple tips, hopefully fewer families will face the heartbreak of losing a pet during 4th of July Holiday.
1. Ensure your pet has a current ID TAG. Remember, every year on July 5th many dogs turn up miles from home — afraid, disoriented, exhausted and dehydrated. And animal shelters across the U.S. get an influx of ‘July 4th dogs’ who escaped during fireworks celebrations and are found by animal control agents and concerned citizens who drop them off at the nearest shelter.
2. Protect your pet before the fireworks begin. Among various pet-finder services available, the Pet Amber Alert technology with GPS helps lost dogs get returned home safely.
3. Don’t leave your pet alone outside on the 4th. If he becomes frightened and panicked, even a fenced yard may not keep your dog safe, and he could injure herself trying to escape. If he gets out, he could run away, be hit by a car, or stolen by a stranger. Try to keep your pet indoors at all times during holiday celebrations. Ideally, someone stays home with your pet. If you must go out, be sure to keep your dog leashed.
4. Create a little safe haven for your dog. Use bedding, a toy or two, and a few treats. Turn on a TV, radio or other music to help muffle the noise from outside. Make sure they can have access to their crate or usual safe place inside. If necessary, use physical anxiety-wraps to appease their fear.
5. Keep your pet safe indoors. If you must bring your pet along to the celebration don’t leave him unattended in your car. It’s apt to be hot enough to bring on heatstroke even if you crack your windows, not to mention if your pet panics, he could hurt himself or cause damage to your vehicle.
Bonus Reminder: Start dosing your dog now with CBD–help calm your dog in the weeks prior to July 4th fireworks display!
Symptoms Of Dogs Anxiety
Some dogs react to noise phobias by freezing and withdrawing, while others respond by crashing through windows or chewing through restraints or enclosures. While the former behavior may seem more timid and less extreme, the fact is both reactions indicate profound suffering and potential permanent damage to canine nerve cells. CBD treatment for dogs is a natural alternative to anti-anxiety drugs for dogs without dangerous, addictive side-effects and is perhaps the most promising dietary supplement for overall canine health to come out in the last 50 years.
Numerous studies and an accumulating body of evidence from clinical experiments show that CBD has strong anxiolytic (anti-anxiety) properties and is well-tolerated by dogs with symptoms of severe separation anxiety or ‘audio-phobia’ disorders.
Can CBD Help Your Dog’s Noise Phobia?
Cannabidiol (CBD), a Cannabis Sativa constituent, is a pharmacologically broad-spectrum phytonutrient that in recent years has drawn increasing interest as a treatment for a wide range of human neuro-psychiatric disorders.
Not surprising, CBD for dogs has also been getting a lot of attention lately because it may provide some of the same interesting therapeutic effects for pets suffering from behavioral issues like depression, separation anxiety and reactionary panic disorders like ‘noise phobias’.
CBD Is a Natural Anti-Anxiety Pet Medicine
CBD helps to calm your dog’s noise phobia by exerting direct action on receptors in a dog’s brain. CBD acts similar to a class of prescription anti-depressants, known as Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRI), by boosting nerve impulse signaling via serotonin receptors. In fact, some studies have shown that CBD can be a superior treatment alternative than anti-anxiety drugs like Alprazolam, Amitriptyline or Clomipramine for canine panic disorders.
Most canine anxiety disorders like noise phobias seem to develop between the early ages of one-to-two years and worsen as the dog matures. It is also known that if a dog reacts to one loud noise, it is likely to react to other resounding noises in the same manner.
Remember, Your Dog Wants to Have Fun Too!
You can still include your dog in holiday festivities like picnics, trips to the beach or lake, or family gatherings. But as a general rule, most dogs are more comfortable left at home with their normal routine during July 4th celebrations. Just make sure your four-legged family member is tucked snugly inside your home, with access to a safe haven, before the fireworks begin.
July 4th is an exciting time in our county’s history and our own family traditions, but dogs take their cues from our excited behavior. It’s important to go about your normal routine as much as possible to keep our beloved pets in a stable, refined mind-set.
Above all, this should be a time of joyful celebration for the entire family, including our furry family members and using CBD can provide the calm-before-the-storm.
Happy Fourth of July from the K9 Medibles family to yours!
Curtis has been passionate about the health and welfare of animals since his first dog rescue.
After studying Sports Medicine & Biology at the University of Oregon, Curtis went on to excel in a career of Clinical Nutrition, later owning a health care supplement company serving private-practice physicians.
Known for his expansive knowledge of natural health and alternative medicine, Curtis believes that natural plant-based therapies can be applied to veterinary animal care which led him to study the science of Cannabinoid Medicine. His expertise in Functional Medicine led him to formulate a unique hemp-based canine care product, Canine Support Formula, fulfilling a dream to combine natural pet-care strategies with the new therapeutic potential of medical cannabis.
In reverence for his own dog, Parker, Curtis has dedicated his company–K9 Medibles–to improving the health and longevity of all dogs.
To learn more about Curtis and how K9 Medibles can help your dog, click HERE.
2 thoughts on “Dog Anxiety: 5 Ways To Keep Your Dog Calm During Fireworks”
I have a 10-12 year old, black lab, rottie, mastiff mix. We adopted him about 7 years ago. Apparently the dog had been severely abused, he was sooo timid and afraid of his own shadow and still will not bark. He is an amazing and loveable dog. We had to take him to a vet several years ago to have porcupine quills removed and after returning home he had his first seizure that we witnessed.. The vet was not sure whether it was due to (new) anesthetic they used or due to the stress of the vet incident or both. She said unless we brought the dog in to be tested then she would not be able to do any surgeries on him if needed in the future. We decided not to put him through more unnecessary stress. We then had another vet come to the house for his annual wellness checks. Over the years, we witnessed a couple of seizures, one seem to happen after he was very excited on a trail running around with another dog and one after I applied a topical preventative flea and tick med….needless to say, we have never given him any type of pesticide again. He has been on a raw diet since we have had him and seemed very healthy with the exception a “loud heart murmur” discovered by the vet. In the summer, he had to have a toe amputated due to cancer. He did quite well (they used propofal (sp?). He was put on meloxicam and recommended he stay on it for life, he was also on antibiotics for toe and also put on benazipryl 20mg, (twice a day). He was doing quite well for a while but having the occasional “episode”, would get all wobbly, tail between legs and then fall over. She thought possibly due to lack of oxygen, fainting…. and believes it was heart related so she added another heart med pimobendan 5 mg each (x3 capsules twice a day). He then had issues with another toe which resulted in open wounds so she xrayed, as well as chest xray and blood work. She put him on another 21 day antibiotic in addition to the meloxicam and the 8 daily heart pills. The episodes started to get more frequent and he then started having full blown seizures. She set his 2nd toe amputation surgery for Nov 25, however on Nov 23 and 24th, he had cluster seizures of 3 and 4 per night just after giving him his evening meds. I informed the vet and asked WHY he was having these seizures and she said it is not likely that it is epilepsy at his age. … then why? I thought it would be a good idea to figure out what was causing the seizures before putting him through the surgery but she said it would take too long to get him in for an MRI or to see a neurologist. I asked if it was possibly that he was over medicated? toxicity, maybe he’s more sensitive to all the meds. (??) I said I cant give him all these pills until we figure out whats going on. Long story short (sorry, not possible), she did the surgery, agreed to eliminate all the pimobendan capsules from his daily intake. He came home from the surgery and had 5 seizures between 5:30 pm and 2 a.m. I called her insisting that she get him an appt to a neurologist or put him on anti-seizure meds… maybe brain tumor?? i dont know. We do have an appt for Jan 12th 2021. My husband has been sleeping with the dog since he returned home from surgery to keep an eye on him. Amazingly, he has been seizure free since then. I would be very interested in weaning him off the meloxicam ..and now that he is finished with his antibiotics, he is only on the one heart pill 2ce a day. Do you think I could benefit from the CBD for his heart, joints with age, cancer,…… I hear it is good for seizures. How much would you recommmend…with THC I would imagine Thank you Tara
Hi Tara, thank you for your very comprehensive log on your dog’s health history and current veterinary medical care. It’s obvious you and your husband have a deep love for your pup. In situations where a dog is on multiple medications, adding CBD therapy can show promise in reducing the need for some of these medications. This is especially true if treatment involves analgesics (meloxicam), allergy meds, or the use of steroids for inflammation, or AE (anti-epileptic drugs) for K9 seizures. The best place to start is with a quality CBD oil like Canine Support Formula, then establish a proper starting dose based on your dogs weight…and then set a daily schedule that does not conflict with the application of vet recommended medications. You can avoid any conflicts with the majority of prescription medications by giving CBD away from these drugs by at least 4 hours. Your dog has a lot of different systems that can benefit from CBD supplementation (cardiovasculur/immune system/ Central Nervous system, etc.) so let’s talk more about your dog’s current list of medications and design a therapy program that is easy to monitor and gives the optimum symptom relief.