Halloween can be a challenging time for our Little Woofers, between random loud bangs, family members turning in to ghosts and ghouls and the doorbell ringing non-stop.
Some dogs may take this in their stride, but other Little Woofers mental health can really suffer. There are a few things we can do to try help them out.
Dogs hearing is FOUR TIMES more sensitive than ours, and they hear at a much higher frequency too!!! So, we can only imagine what bangers and fireworks sound like to our poor Little Woofers. Some dogs may need the help and advice of a vet as they could need medical assistance through this time.
If you want to dress your Little Woofer, we need to start training this with them in a positive way. We should never force our dogs into things they don’t want as it could end up either unnecessarily stressing them out, damaging your bond with them or cause a behaviour issue we don’t want to see.
If we are dressing up and your Little Woofer won’t recognise you or others in the home, start showing them the costumes and masks while they aren’t on you. Slowly and positively build time with these around your Littler Woofer.
Don’t bring your Little Woofer Trick or Tricking as this can be such an overwhelming and terrifying time for them. Instead play games and have some enrichment in the safety of their own home.
Build a safe space for them that they can be while fireworks and people are calling to the door. Have some white noise like a TV or radio on to try lessening the noises outside. There are hours of dog friendly music on YouTube. Start to build this safe space now. Have it comfortable with blankets, pillows and/or beds. Give them treats here and over the days as they become more comfortable with this area start to give them long lasting chews and enrichment here. Remember dogs are associative learners- sniffing, licking, and chewing help produce dopamine (happy) and serotonin (calming) chemicals in the dog so they them start to associate this area with these feelings.
Make sure your Little Woofer doesn’t get their paws on the treats that come in to house such as chocolate, raisins and jellies.
Start trying to get your Little Woofer used to the fireworks now. Play it lowly on your phone (Youtube is great for this). For some dogs this can still be too much so it might even be low and in a different part of the house to your Little Woofer. While the sound is playing have your Little Woofer doing something they love like a fun game with you or a lick mat, snuffle mat or Kong. If their body language looks good in the next session have the sound slightly louder. You can check out our social media for body language signs.
Tips for the day!
Walk your dog early or just do enrichment instead.
Make sure their I.D tag and chip details are up to date – lots of dogs go missing around Halloween!
Keep curtains closed so your Little Woofer doesn’t get startled by the flash of the fireworks and they don’t get scared by the witches and devils that might be coming up your driveway.
Feed them early as they might be too scared later to eat.
Have the TV or radio on to try and hide the sounds of outside.
Have their safe space available to them.
Be there for them, if they want to hide under the bed or in the shower room that is ok, be with them- dogs, like kids, take social security from us even just by being there.
Hope this has help, if you need more help or advice please get in touch with us!