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Used to run a stable and live on a farm, now I am back into banking for awhile. Still have horses and love animals.  

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Fireworks

We didn't have many out here, the dogs barked some, Dusti who hates thunder and gunshots and fireworks got a little concerned but not much. This holiday is not the greatest for our pets, it's not that dogs are particularly scared just because they hear an unusual noise, their hearing is just so much more sensitive than ours.

Dogs hear and smell many times greater than we do, what sounds loud to us can be excruciating to them. Since it can be painful they will try to flee the area. Thunder is a little different because it is usually loud but distant compared to fireworks.

Dogs can overcome their thunder phobia's, the first thing is to always be calm yourself and don't reassure your dog.  You are teaching your dog that there is a reason to fear and you are rewarding the behavior of "fear". Instead just act matter of fact, try and focus your dogs attention on something positive when they react to thunder. Redirect their attention to food and play and they will learn to re associate their fear of thunder with something they like. It does take time to  teach a dog that thunder is something they don't have to fear. Time and patience is what is needed in any endeavor teaching whether animal or human.

Fireworks are not something you should attempt to desensitize a dog to, they should be removed from the area far enough that they will not be frightened or suffer a hearing injury. It does hurt them because their hearing is magnetized to a much greater degree compared to ours.

Fireworks are fun but your pets are with you everyday and provide more pleasure and entertainment in the long run. Be responsible, you wouldn't expose a child to a situation that can cause severe pain and discomfort, at least I hope not.   

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