Even though Memorial Day is called “The Official First Fay of Summer’, it always felt like The Fourth of July was the first real Summer holiday. I remember being around the pool with all my friends, the smell of lighter fluid on the barbecue, hot dogs, Coke, and all sorts of firecrackers, sparklers, and fireworks. We had some of the smaller fireworks for the yard and then there were the really big, bright, and loud fireworks that came from the park behind us.
These were great memories and we still love this great holiday. The problem is that these same experiences that we love can be very frightening and dangerous for our dogs. For most of the year, our dogs are happy and love to do anything we are doing. This is because our actions are normally predictable and repetitive. This give our dogs time to socialize, learn, and accept our actions. They learn that all is fine and join in.
Strange people, unusual actions, loud noises, and blinding flashes are not “normal things” from our dog’s perspective. These things can scare, frighten, and even hurt him. He normally responds through fear and timidity to let us know “Hey, that is enough”. Since we are too busy ‘having fun”, we don’t properly understand our dog’s communication. Our dog will often escalate his communication through fear and escape.
We need to understand how to make The Fourth of July a safe and happy time for our dog. Robin and I have a great dog training article titled “How Can I Keep My Dog Safe and Happy this 4th of July” that can help you with the upcoming holiday.