Keep pets calm during firework season with a cosy ‘doggy den’

Firework season can be a scary time for dogs like Thomas
Firework season can be a scary time for dogs like Thomas

A dog welfare charity in Shoreham is advising dog owners on how to keep their pets safe and calm ahead of the firework season.

Experts from Dogs Trust Shoreham, in Brighton Road, said bonfire night, Halloween and New Year’s Eve are often a stressful time for dogs.

They are urging owners to set up a ‘doggy den’ in their homes where pets can feel safe and secure.

Dr Rachel Casey, director of canine behaviour and research at the Dogs Trust, said: “Many of us enjoy the experience of fireworks but for our dogs it’s often a terrifying experience.

“Dogs have approximately four times more sensitive hearing than us, and also have a more extensive range of hearing – they can hear much higher frequency sounds than we can - so just imagine how loud a firework bang is for a dog. 
“The smells and flashing light of fireworks are also unusual for dogs.

“Fireworks tend to be sudden, unpredictable and bright, this cocktail of effects can often have a profoundly negative impact on dogs.

A doggy den creates a safe haven where dogs can rest peacefully, she said.

The den should be built somewhere quiet and cosy, but where the dog can move in and out freely.

People were advised to use an indoor dog crate, which can be covered in blankets to muffle the sounds and filled with soft pillows and familiar items to make the dog feel comfortable.

Keeping a radio or the TV playing will help to mask the sounds of the fireworks outside.

Watch a video on how to create a doggy den here.