Puppy Noise Socialization: Thunderstorm Thursdays & Fireworks Fridays
We need to socialize our puppies to noises! Two noises that cause many dogs lifelong stress are thunder and fireworks. For this reason, we focus on helping them cope from an early age! Have Thunderstorm Thursdays and Fireworks Fridays at your house!
Find a video on YouTube with the noise you want to work on. (Go for real storms, not the relaxation sounds!)
Play the video at a volume that your puppy notices but shows no stress! Surround sound is best if you’ve got it.
While the video plays, just have a good time with your pup! Play with toys, train, or have some cuddle/petting time!
Gradually bump up the volume during the session, making sure your pup can still eat/play/relax.
If he stops or seems stressed, lower the volume or give him a break.
Over several sessions, get it up to realistic volume!
For puppies 8 to 16 weeks, do this at least once a week for five to ten minutes. (Start short.)
For puppies and teenagers over 16 weeks, you can start to do it less often, but keep scheduling it at least a couple times a month until your dog is an adult! They'll likely need some refreshers before rainy season, New Year's, and Fourth of July.
Want to make it easy?
Set a weekly phone reminder! (You can go down to once or twice a month during teenageerhood.)
When you start your session, set a timer for how long you want to work for (start with 5 minutes, easy peasy!).
Socialization is like a vaccine: It’s not a guarantee that’s 100% effective, but odds are much better that you'll prevent or lessen the impact of what you vaccinated for! This is to "vaccinate" for thunderstorm and fireworks fears and phobias. (Which are really common!)