Dogs Trust issues advice to help dogs cope on New Year's Eve in the North East

Dogs Trust Darlington has issued advice ahead of New Year's Eve.
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The UK's largest dog charity has offered advice to dog-owners for upcoming New Year's Eve firework celebrations.

Dogs Trust Darlington has shared tips to help owners prepare their pets who might be scared by the unexpected bangs and blasts of fireworks as the clock strikes midnight on December 31.

Photo: Clive TaggPhoto: Clive Tagg
Photo: Clive Tagg
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Alex Hennessey, centre manager at Dogs Trust Darlington said: “Fear of fireworks is worryingly common in dogs of all ages, and it can have a significant impact on their wellbeing and affect dogs at any time in their lives.

“There are lots of things dog owners can do to help make fireworks less stressful including having a clear plan, ahead of time, to help their dog cope. Dogs will respond to fireworks in different ways, some will want to find a cosy hiding place, whilst others will want reassurance. It is important to recognise the individual needs of your dog, letting them do what makes them feel most comfortable, if it is safe to do so.”

The charity urges owners to visit its website for full guidance on how to help dogs stay safe and settled during fireworks. The top tips include:

Speak to your vet well ahead of fireworks events - They can help with advice and may also prescribe medication to help your dog cope. Medication can be extremely useful where dogs are fearful as it can not only help them cope during the fireworks event, but also stop their fear escalating after each event. 

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"We recommend noting down how your dog reacted during the fireworks and what worked well to help them cope in preparation for the next firework event," continued Hennessey. "We would also advise returning to a normal routine as quickly as possible following fireworks to help dogs settle down. If they were worried during fireworks, it is a good idea to seek professional help well before the next firework season starts."

Dogs Trust recommends dog owners to seek veterinary advice for any concerns. They can check if there are any contributing medical problems, and if necessary, refer you to a clinical behaviourist. Read Dogs Trust's advice on finding a qualified behaviourist