Volunteers to skip fireworks display, calm shelter dogs instead

While the flashes and bangs may be fun to watch for many July 4, not every creature appreciates the fireworks.

Some animals are downright terrified of what comes with the displays.

For the second year, Maricopa County Animal Care and Control is looking for volunteers to help calm down anxious shelter animals during and after Thursday's fireworks shows.

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The event the shelter is holding is called Calming the Canines.

Shelter spokesman Jose Santiago told KJZZ that the dogs in the shelter will sleep better if they have someone to comfort them during the noise.

"Dogs, in particular, can hear noises at much louder decibels than we do. During any festivities where fireworks are going off the dogs can hear them louder, closer than the average person can, and it can make them uncomfortable. It can scare them. They're unfamiliar with what that sound is," Santiago told KJZZ.

Volunteers will be allowed to read, sing softly, play soft music or just sit with the animals, according to the shelter's Facebook post.

If your dog is anxious during fireworks displays or other times of anxiety, PetMD offers these tips to help them:

  • Play music, especially music created for pets.
  • Try aromatherapy or essential oils. Put them on the animal's back where they can't reach them and be sure to use pet-friendly products.
  • Give them physical contact. Pet your dog or be near him or her.
  • Exercise your pet. Try to help them spend their uncontrollable energy.
  • Hae a time-out. Give your pet a quiet, safe space they can retreat to.
  • Check yourself. If you have feelings of anxiety, animals can pick up on it and could feed off your feelings.

You can also see your vet for anxiety medications or supplements for your pet, PetMD says.

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