How to Keep Your Dog Calm and Safe During a Fireworks Display

Fireworks aren't just for celebrating Independence Day.  There are many other occasions where you might end up exposing your dog to a good old fashioned display of celebration.  Just like a summer thunderstorm, some dogs will become frightened or have a raise in their anxiety level when the show starts.

Many dogs become lost during these shows because they are afraid and are trying to find someplace that they consider safe.  While a lot of breeds will return home, since most Siberian Husky dogs have no sense of home, if your Sibe gets away from you there is the unfortunate chance that the dog may not find their way back home.

Always make sure that you dog is micro chipped and that the information on the chip is up to date with the correct address and phone number.  Even if your dog is chipped, it also helps to have an identification tag on their collar with your contact information so your dog can quickly be returned to you if he or she is ever lost.

In order to help prevent this from happening, here are 5 things that you can do to help keep your dog calm during the 4th of July holiday or anytime they are exposed to firework displays:

 1. Boarding or Kenneling

If you board your dog when you go out of town, this is an excellent option for keeping your dog safe during the holiday.  Whether it be at a facility that you are familiar with or a family member or friends house that watches the dog or that the dog knows, this is a good option as well.  Treat it like you always do when you are going out of town and the dog will be none the wiser.

If you can't board your dog elsewhere, consider using a training kennel for the evening with a peanut butter filled Kong to keep them safe and occupied.

2.  Sedation

You may opt to talk to your veterinarian about a sedative for your dog for the evening.  It will help to keep him or her relaxed while the festivities are going on and will help give you the peace of mind that you dog is sleeping and safe.

A thunder shirt works for some dogs to help with anxiety.

3.  Thunder Shirt

The thunder shirt works for some dogs but not for all.  This is a shirt that wraps around the dog's torso.  It was originally created to help dogs that have trouble with situations that they find uncomfortable like thunderstorms.  It hugs the dog's body tightly.  Again, it works for some dogs but not for all and will need to be used on the dog prior to the fireworks event so the dog is used to the feeling of the shirt around it.

4.  Extra Exercise and Distraction

Take your dog for an extra long walk or run to tire him or her out a few hours before the fireworks show starts.  Another option is to play with the dog for a longer period of time in the back yard by throwing toys or their favorite ball and having them chase it repeatedly.  This will help to get rid of any energy that your dog will have later in the evening.  This will help keep the dog calmer.

Distracting the dog while the fireworks are going off is another good thing that you can do to help your dog get through the fireworks show.  I always use a peanut butter or treat filled toy like the Kong to distract Sophie and it has worked like a charm for years.

5.  Keep Them Inside

The best thing that you can do for a dog that has a high level of anxiety when loud noises like fireworks are in full swing is to keep them inside.  If your dog is afraid of firework or loud noises like thunder, it's not a good idea to take them outside while the noise is going on.  The dog will try to get someplace that makes them more comfortable and at that moment, it is someplace that they can't hear all of the booming and banging.  At least with them in a familiar surrounding like the inside of their house, they will feel safer than they would outside.  Especially if they are in an unfamiliar place.

How Much Exercise Does a Siberian Husky Need?

Sophie relaxing after a few hours of hard play.
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The Siberian Husky dog has a lot of energy and I do mean a lot.  They need to be exercised every day which makes them an excellent companion for families with energetic children and singles that get out and about on a daily basis.  If your husky is not getting enough exercise, it can cause some serious behavioral problems.

One of the first thing that happens with my husky when she doesn't receive enough exercise is pacing.  She will walk through the house non-stop.  While it can be annoying, it's not really what I would call a behavioral issue.

Destructive behavior is very common with a Siberian Husky that is not receiving enough exercise every day.  They will tear something up and these dogs are masters of destruction.  I've seen instances where a bored sibe completely obliterated their owner's couch.  Then again, I made the mistake of taking a nap because I was really tired and bypassed Sophie's hour long walk and when I woke up the blinds on the patio door were torn to pieces because she was energetic and bored.

Digging is another Siberian Husky trait that can come out in dogs that are not receiving enough exercise.  While this is not the only cause of your husky turning your yard into swiss cheese, in some huskies, more exercise solves the problem pretty quickly.

Walking Sophie in one of our favorite spots.
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In order to understand the amount of energy and the source, you have to look at this breed's history.  These dogs were bread to pull heavy loads across frozen ground.  That means that they had to be high energy.  The Siberian Husky is like the dog version of a triathlete and as the old saying goes, you can take the dog out of the frozen tundra and their original job but unfortunately evolution hasn't taken away their energy or their urge to run.

Not all huskies are the same and some do require more exercise than others.  Sophie had quite a bit more energy when she was younger than she does today so our exercise sessions aren't as long as they used to be but they are still fun and enjoyable for both of us.  Simply playing ball for an hour in the backyard with your husky can help get rid of a lot of your dog's energy.  Walks or runs are great too but just remember to keep your dog on a leash or a longer training leash because they have no sense of home and are easily lost.

No matter what activity you choose to do with your Siberian Husky to help them spend their energy stores, do something.  Help them get that energy out and you'll have a much happier husky and be a much happier husky owner.

Don't forget to check out our Facebook page!  There are quite a few Siberian Husky owners there just like you!

Should You Brush Your Siberian Husky Before Bathing Them?

After brushing Sophie...
Siberian Huskies shed and they shed a lot.  I sometimes wonder when I'm brushing Sophie where all of that hair comes from and how in the world she isn't bald.  Huskies shed year round and will "blow" their coats twice a year which increases the amount of hair to an unfathomable amount.

Huskies are generally regarded as a dog breed that will keep themselves clean with their own grooming habits but there is always that one dog that doesn't quite get it right so bathing becomes necessary.  With the amount of hair that these dogs lose, it raises the question of whether or not you should brush the dog out before attempting to bathe them.

If you are giving your Sibe a bath indoors, brushing them before hand can remove a lot of the hair that would ultimately end up in your drain pipes.  As we all know, an accumulation of hair in drain pipes can lead to clogging which can ultimately lead to a visit from your local plumber to eliminate that problem.

I never bathe Sophie in my bath tub and the shedding hair is the reason why.  She is bathed outside in her baby pool or in the grass with a water hose that is hooked up to the sink in my basement.  I use luke warm water that will be comfortable for her and help get her hair and skin clean.  When bathing a Siberian Husky outside, it makes brushing optional although I can tell you that if I don't brush her first the shedding hair sticks to everything including the water hose, the grass around us and me.

There are no real rules when it comes to answering this question.  I think it is probably more personal preference of the person giving the dog the bath taking into consideration what can happen if the dog is not brushed before hand.

What is your opinion on brushing your husky before bathing them?  You can share your opinion/experience in the comment section below or on our Facebook page.