Surviving 4th of July fireworks - Havanese Forum : Havanese Forums
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-07-2014, 09:09 AM Thread Starter
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Unhappy Surviving 4th of July fireworks

Did we all make it through the weekend?

I know that it has been discussed before many times but HELP!!!! Jack is worse and worse each year. He is almost four now. This year was terrible. Running and barking until he almost collapses from exhaustion. I have the thundershirt, play the soothing music, keep him snuggled up against me...

Through all of the insane barking, I am thinking, "Am I rewarding the behavior? Should I stuff treats down his face to distract him? Maybe if I did that, he would think fireworks are a good thing. Or he would think that insane barking is a good thing."

What happened was after 20 minutes, I couldn't stand it any longer. It was the third night of fireworks. I did the un-American thing. I ratted out the neighbors and called the cops. Fireworks are illegal in MA. It took 30 minutes for Jack's breathing to calm. I am still enjoying the stress migraine it caused.


SOOOOO................

Lay the advice on me. (besides being the big evil meanie snitch of a neighbor)

TTFN,
Pam


Last edited by morriscsps; 07-07-2014 at 10:43 AM.
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-07-2014, 02:25 PM
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My big girl Kara is so scared of fireworks! and in my neighborhood they start 4 days before the fourth and I still heard some last night.

poor girl!
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-07-2014, 03:03 PM
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Poor Jack, and poor you! I would have done the same thing and called the cops so don't feel bad about that. Luckily my two don't have an issue with fireworks, which surprises me because Timmy is such a wimp. This isn't exactly the same type of fear as yours but I am working with Timmy on his fear of large dogs, especially two in my neighborhood. I had my trainer come out and observe his reaction to make sure it wasn't aggression and we concluded it is fear. So, I am working on rewarding him BEFORE he sees this trigger, while I still can keep his attention, I take treats with me at every walk and I know the walking schedule of the two neighborhood dogs so I get a several chances to work per day. It's a slow process but once I could determine his threshold, or distance, needed before he got worked up we are able to set goals and are having success. Unfortunately fireworks don't really fit into this type of process but I think if you do reward him for doing well with the noise he will take the thought of you having his back by making the situation more positive before thinking, okay I get treats if I bark. Just my two cents. I'm sure others with more expertise will chime in but wanted to say I feel you pain and you're not an evil meanie!

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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-07-2014, 03:05 PM
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We are picking up our new puppy tomorrow! I could have picked her up last week, but decided that I would rather she was with siblings and familiar surroundings during the fourth. I really hated waiting another week, but thought it would be best for her (Lucy). I am beyond excited to see her tomorrow.
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-07-2014, 03:27 PM
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Our neighborhood is like a war zone on the 4th and the 5th. The best thing for Whimsy is for the two of us to snuggle in bed with the tv blasting and the air conditioning on.She just plasters herself against me and I hold her tight to help with the shaking. There are so many people in my neighborhood that blow off fireworks that I would never be able to call the police on all of them. I hate it!! They are illegal in this state and I just think the police turn their heads. Makes me so mad!!

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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-07-2014, 04:53 PM Thread Starter
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Hmmmm...

So does everyone think that if I can get Jack to pause in his frenzy and sit down next to me, it would be okay to get him treats as a reward for settling down? Then should I continue to give him treats to try to distract him?

I can usually get Jack to sit next to me most of the time. Just some of the big boomers send him vibrating across the room but the barking is pretty constant.

TTFN,
Pam

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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-07-2014, 06:14 PM
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Just another idea is to maybe have a new toy or an exciting one that he never sees except when there are fireworks. My trainer said that the play emotion is usually stronger than the fear emotion if you can switch "play" on.

Otherwise yes, I'd get the favourite treats and the second he settles in any way or pauses in barking give him a treat. Is there any food he goes wild for? With Charlie it would be cheese
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-07-2014, 06:29 PM
Canela, Vino & Jack's Mom
 
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I feel your pain. Roxxy, my 3 yo Vizsla, has always been terrified of fireworks. At our old house she would try to hide under tables, beds, in closets any where to get away from the noise while shaking uncontrollably. My poor baby. We felt so bad for her becuz of this we don't celebrate the 4th (and New Years Eve). We make into a movie night with popcorn n a few snacks for them. The weekend before the 4th of July, I tell DH to find a good (loud) action movie.

As soon as she hears a small noise of a firework, the sound could be very far away and we could barely hear it, her nose starts to twitch and her ears are pulled back - she's on high alert just waiting to hear more and thats our cue for movie time.

Just like Whimsy's mom, we cuddle with all four dogs on the couch with blankets, with all the lights on, the AC turn up and the surround system up too to drown the fireworks. This has worked every year for us. We make sure Roxxy is in the middle of us; cuddling on her, petting her until she falls asleep.They are use to loud movie watching parties from us, so they all just fall asleep like normal; last year they didn't even notice the fireworks. Luckily this house has a basement (DH's man cave) and the outside noise are usually to a minimum anyways unlike our previous house which was one floor n had Very thin walls. We had to have movie night on the 5th too b/c people were still celebrating. We try real hard to distract her. It was painful watching her shake and whine. On one New Years Eve DH was watching a movie while I was playing music (all in the same room) to drown out the midnight fireworks, we played games with the dogs n I "dance" with her to distract her. It works for us. She's actually gotten better every year. I doubt she will ever get use to them, she very skittish when it comes to noises. I usually try to tire them out during the day too which helps with them falling asleep faster.

The fireworks have never bother Canela and Hunter. They'll bark but ignore it after awhile. This year was Vino first 4th of July, he did bark b/c the others bark but nothing major.

side note - Vizslas are known to be gun-dogs. DH has a bunch of guns, rifles, BB guns and uses our backyard and garage for small target practice range (he uses blanks and dogs are no where near) I think its weird how Roxxy won't react to sound of a bullets or shots but will go ballistic with firework

Betty AKA Canela, Jack and Vino's Mom







In a perfect world, every dog would have a home and every home would have a dog..

Last edited by BFrancs; 07-07-2014 at 06:32 PM.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-08-2014, 08:53 AM
Henry 2006-2018/ Kordelia
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whimsy View Post
Our neighborhood is like a war zone on the 4th and the 5th. The best thing for Whimsy is for the two of us to snuggle in bed with the tv blasting and the air conditioning on.She just plasters herself against me and I hold her tight to help with the shaking. There are so many people in my neighborhood that blow off fireworks that I would never be able to call the police on all of them. I hate it!! They are illegal in this state and I just think the police turn their heads. Makes me so mad!!
I agree, I think the best thing to do is to surround your dog with noises he's used to at that time of night - tv, family, and keep calm.
Very sad, on July 5th I saw a guy putting up a missing dog poster, an italian greyhound who ran off during fireworks. He looked so sad, hope he gets the dog back safely.
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-08-2014, 10:06 AM
Canela, Vino & Jack's Mom
 
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Originally Posted by gelbergirl View Post
Very sad, on July 5th I saw a guy putting up a missing dog poster, an italian greyhound who ran off during fireworks. He looked so sad, hope he gets the dog back safely.

That is so heartbreaking - I pray he does find his baby. Even though we have fenced in yard we keep Rox on a leash to potty just in case she darts off on those days.



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Betty AKA Canela, Jack and Vino's Mom







In a perfect world, every dog would have a home and every home would have a dog..
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