Holiday Chaos Tricks for Dogs


The holidays are upon us, complete with all the parties and fanfare we expect while celebrating this time of year. We often get so caught up in the moments of holiday cheer that we forget our furry friends may not be having the same joyful reaction to the season’s activities. While we ooh and aah at the explosive fireworks as we ring in the New Year, many dogs are cowering in corners, shaking uncontrollably, panting, running in circles, unable to find solace in any soothing stroking of their fur we offer. The holidays are replete with unfamiliar sounds, an abundance of strangers, changes to routine, and overindulging. That applies to both humans and our beloved dogs. But there are some tricks to help lessen your dog’s anxiety during these exciting times.


The Triggers

We can anticipate two holidays as being especially noise-laden: the 4th of July and New Year’s Eve. It’s not even dark yet, and the fireworks have begun. You know it’s going to be a long night for everyone, but especially for your dog. The best trick is to drive away. Pack up the car with snacks, a blanket or two, and your dog(s). The easiest way to avoid anxiety is to go in the opposite direction. Most dogs enjoy a good car ride. Being in the car mutes the outside world and gives him a calm, stress-free environment. German shepherds, Golden Retrievers, and Collies are the breeds most likely to be sound sensitive. Paying particular attention to their behaviors will help to anticipate their reactions.

Holiday parties can also create a lot of stress for your dog. The craziness surrounding party preparation can leave little time for the usual walks or attention your dog requires. Add to that the sudden addition of strangers coming and going. This can be incredibly confusing. Find a bedroom or other room in your home that is familiar and comfortable for your dog. Make sure you can keep the door closed or locked from the outside. Ideally, you don’t want someone accidentally walking into that room either. If the party is noisy, consider playing some music for your dog. It will help to drown out the sounds and potentially make him less anxious. Music, in general, can be soothing during these unusually loud times by buffering the noise.

A natural alternative to lessening holiday-related anxiety in your dog is the use of CBD products like CBD calming chews for dogs. They contain a naturally calming formula that helps dogs to relax. Anxiety is reduced, and panicked, scared behavior becomes less as well. And because calming chews are just like treats, dogs will not balk at them like other medicines.

For extreme cases of anxiety, talking to your veterinarian is the best course of action. Fear-related anxiety can be anticipated and treated in advance. Knowing the triggers that cause your dog’s anxiety will allow you to seek the best treatment from your vet. Medications need not be long-term and can provide the needed soothing to get through a rough night.

A sad repercussion of the holiday celebrations is the large number of pets that run away from home. Rescue shelters and the Humane Society see increases during this time, especially the 4th of July because animals flee their homes with homeowners often away during these celebratory hours. Regardless of the time of year or celebration, dogs should have clear identification and ideally have a chip for a quick return to their owners, who are likely devastated at their dog missing.


‘Tis the Season

Holiday spirit
A person is holding sprinklers in the hands at open night

Fortunately, holidays are not everyday occurrences. With good foresight and planning, alleviating adverse reactions to triggers can be anticipated. And, of course, the last thing you ever want to do is get mad at your dog. He’s having a hard enough time as it is. Ultimately, stay calm and recognize what he is going through. The fireworks and parties will soon be over, and his everyday life will once again be just that. Dogs are man’s best friends for a reason. If we can do a little in return to make it less stressful for them during loud, chaotic times, that is the least we can do.

  • Hi there…

    I believe that anyone can create a flexible, natural lifestyle without a ton of stress!


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