Seasonal Challenges, True Stories

Thundershirt + More Anti-stress Options for Your Dog

The Fourth of July is all about celebrating with the whole family, including beloved pets. Youngsters (and oldsters) frolicking with Frisbees may have Rover jumping with glee. Uncle Rob might even covertly hand him half a hamburger off the grill (no onions!). On the other hand, as the sun sets and Rover’s humans look forward to continuing the celebration with fireworks, his happiness may turn to stress and misery. Rover doesn’t associate the booming noises, flashes and burning smell with a fun experience like humans may! One idea to reduce your pet’s stress is a Thundershirt. A viable option, though not always the best fit or even necessary for all four-legged friends.

Did you know that according to the American Humane Association, July 5 is the busiest day of the year for animal shelters? The reason? Pets panic at the noise of firecrackers and flee into the night, winding up lost, injured or killed. Don’t let this happen to your beloved family member!

Please follow these simple safety tips:

KEEP YOUR PET INDOORS – at least from sunset to after the fireworks are over. Even if your dog is generally outside, please find him a safe, enclosed space. And NOT the car! Check out this post on heat exhaustion.

We recently heard a story of a friend who witnessed her neighbor’s dog crashing out of the house through a plate glass window in terror! We’re not kidding. This can be serious business.


Most importantly, DON’T BRING ROVER TO THE FIREWORKS DISPLAY (no matter how hard he begs)! We know you love to have him (or her) around you, AND please allow this particular night to be the loving exception.

More motivation to keep your pet far away from the celebration!

  1. Citronella insect control products harm pets too.
  2. Lighter fluid and matches are not for dogs. This seems obvious. Sadly, mistakes happen far too often.
  3. Fireworks themselves are downright dangerous. Even unused ones!
  4. Glow jewelry is toxic when chewed!
  5. Alcoholic drinks are poison for your four-legged friend. It’s not cute to give some to Rover. Not cute.
  6. Human insect repellants can be toxic to pets. Use only what is safe and specific for animals.

Don’t forget to tag your pet!

Be sure and tag your pet! This is an important precaution, not only for the Fourth of July but for life in general. Microchip ID, a tag with their name and your phone number, or both. Don’t put this chore off until it’s too late! Also, keep current photos in the unfortunate event that you have to create signs in your neighborhood while searching for a lost pet.

Even when secure at home, the noises of our American Independence Day may be terrifying for your pup. Check out this post for a number of safe options for creating a calm space in which to weather out the pyrotechnics.

The Fourth of July and thunderstorm season merge here in Florida, likewise in many other places across our nation. Please check out our blog, How to help a dog stressed by thunderstorms. You’ll find useful and simple tips including links to the innovative Thundershirt.

Natural Calm for Fido – with or without Thundershirt

Here at Vital Planet, our favorite anti-stress option is Calm. This excellent product comes in three convenient delivery systems – a powder, chewable tablets, and also soft chews.

Above all, Calm is non-toxic. Your beloved pet could scarf up an entire bottle of chewable tablets and only be a bit sleepy (it has happened). Subsequently, have no worries about dosing. This important tip will help you to get the most out of offering Calm to your pet.

The label suggests doses according to your pet’s weight. However, knowing that Calm is non-toxic allows you to increase your dog’s dose without fear. If your dog’s stress level doesn’t decrease after the initial dose, give another dose after 10 minutes. Additional servings can be safe and helpful too. Concerning the 4th of July, consider starting Calm on July 1st or 2nd to get the product into his system. Trial and observation will help you determine your own pup’s best treatment for effective results. Like humans, dog’s responses are unique.

Great for thunderstorm nerves too!

If your dog is sensitive to thunderstorms, you might consider giving him Calm daily during storm season. Then when the storm approaches, you can add another dose if stress starts to escalate.

One last valuable tip!

If you believe that your canine’s stressed behaviors can be somewhat extreme, please choose either the chewable tablets or the powder. In addition to excellent calming herbs like GABA, L-theanine, and chamomile, these two products also include exclusive South American flower essences that for many dogs provide additional relaxation and calming benefits.

We here at Vital Planet wish you a safe and happy Independence Day!

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