Dogs Trust

Halloween Fireworks Preparation

Halloween can be a very scary time for dogs! Introducing your dog slowly to the sound of fireworks in the weeks leading up to Halloween can help them to become accustomed to the noise and will help prepare them for when the fireworks begin. With this in mind, we have added ‘Sounds Scary’ to our website which you can try at home with your dog. ‘Sounds Scary’ is not only backed by years of clinical experience; it is also scientifically proven to be safe, effective and easy to use.

‘Sounds Scary’ has four recorded tracks for treating firework fears which are designed to slowly introduce your dog to these sounds so that they these sounds become normal to them. Each of the first three tracks starts with 5 seconds of silence and then the sounds gradually get louder. The first time you play the sounds you need to be very careful to monitor your dog’s reaction. Set the track volume as low as you can and allow one of the tracks to play for 20-30 seconds. If your dog shows no reaction, turn up the volume little by little until you can see that your dog has noticed the sounds but is not afraid. Your dog’s ears will twitch a few times and your dog will then settle down again. If your dog raises its head then the sound is too loud. Remember that your dog may find the sound too loud even before you are able to hear the sound yourself. If your dog is afraid with the noises at their lowest level, then try switching one speaker off, turning the bass down or even muffling the speakers with a cushion.

Why not try out our Sound Therapy with your dog today? Make sure to have a read of the instruction book first which you can download below;

Sounds Scary Booklet PDF 1.77 MB

Over the Halloween period, if your dog has only recently developed a sensitivity to fireworks or noises, try to act as if there is nothing to be scared of – jolly him along and praise him for responding positively. However, if your dog has a serious or long-standing phobia, give him attention if he requires it – he’ll be too scared for this to act as a reward, so it won’t encourage the unwanted behaviour and instead he will benefit from the comfort that this gives him. Essentially though, try to find out what helps him to cope and be sure to let him do this, – e.g. letting him hide under the table – don’t try to coax him out, if this is where he feels safest – he’ll come out when he’s ready and then you can praise him.

Halloween may seem far away, but now is the time to start preparing your dog. Keep an eye out for more advice and tips for keeping your dog safe this Halloween over the coming weeks.