Over the last few days I have felt very sorry for the many dogs we have been hearing about on face book and twitter who are very upset by fireworks. I have massive sympathy for these dogs and their owners who I know are also very upset by their dogs reaction to the bonfire night celebrations.
I myself am very lucky – both my dogs are very relaxed about fireworks and don’t get stressed at all. This is great as we live in a built up area surrounded by pubs and houses and there are frequent firework parties. These are not limited to bonfire night as the pubs around us often host weddings and other celebrations and fireworks are often let off at these events.
This year was of course Tommy’s first experience of fireworks and I was determined to prepare him for them as well as I could and so we played a sound effects CD with firework noise frequently, both in the car and in different rooms of the house, for weeks before bonfire night.
When it got closer to November 5th and we started to hear fireworks regularly I made sure we were totally relaxed while they were going off and if he reacted in any way I distracted him by getting up and moving to anther room – he follows me around so he was then busy seeing where we were going rather than thinking about the noise he had just heard.
During bigger displays, which happened more as we got closer to bonfire night, I made sure we had a few new toys about and got these out when the bangs started to keep him focused on nice things. I also made sure he had nice walks each afternoon when I was expecting noise and he actually napped through a couple of close displays! It’s worth making sure you know what events are going on around your area so you can be ready if a big firework display is planned.
All this preparation worked and Tommy was his usual chilled out self during the noise and excitement last night and over the weekend.
Stan fans will know what a nervous and unpredictable little boy he is and would probably expect him to be very upset by the noise of fireworks. I certainly had anticipated problems and was worried last New Year as fireworks are let off in massive numbers around midnight where we live and this would be the first time that I could see Stan’s reaction. Well I was amazed to be shown by my boy that I need not have worried. Far from being scared of fireworks he actually likes them! On New Year’s Eve we were outside when the first batch near us were let off a little early and Stan’s reaction was instant – he moved to be in a better position for viewing and sat down to watch! Since then if he hears them he will wander over to a window and he watches them in the sky – often falling asleep by the window while he is waiting for the next one! Just goes to show that our dogs are very special and individual – Stan is one of a kind!
Well we got up this morning and the leak in the sky may have been plugged – still a few clouds in the distance but IT IS NOT RAINING and even better THE SUN IS SHINING. This is great news as I have loads to do today and sunshine makes me feel more energetic and able to rush around and get everything sorted. So here is today’s list -
- Nag Steven into having a shower
- Remember not to walk too far on walkies as should still be resting sore legs – knees still hurt and one is swollen but I’ll live – think walkies is ok but today is not time for a 10 m,ile plus hike!
- Do the ironing (as if this one will get done!!!!)
- Go to cheap clothes shop and buy two orange T shirts for Cathy to turn into works of art – look out for photos in future blog
- Visit Border Collie Trust
- Give Lisa our thunder shirt so she can see if it helps nervous collies
- Cuddle puppies that have arrived, which is an essential task obviously
- Take one of the lovely boys and girls they have there for a walk with Stan, Cathy and Steven – this is good for several reasons – gives socialisation activity to Stan, helps me in my mission to be a thin chocolate lover, keeps teenagers fit and gets them out in the fresh air, should be enjoyable for which ever dog we take out, gives me chance to take photos and video to use in rehoming features about the trust
- Buy new lead for Stan from their excellent selection
- Subscribe to Border Collie World – info on website- quarterly mag; it only costs £10 a year – goes to help support the collies in need
- Do further study on my pet first aid course – this is proving to be VERY good and goes into a lot of depth. There are videos and a manual and it is all explained very simply. Focused mainly on dogs but has fair bit about cats as well and other animals. I am about to study dog cpr! Stan has already helped by having his breathing checked and his pulse taken. He will be helping again soon by being bandaged – look out for the you tube video and blog about that one! The course also helped Border Collie Trust as I used the code “bordercollie” when signing up so I got a discounted price and they got a donation. Click here if you want to try it as well
- I have joined the Academy of dog training and behaviour as a student – hoping to gain some formal qualifications in dog behaviour to help the dogs I take on walkies and of course my own special boy and today I want to take a look through the info for the first section of the course which is all about what goes on inside a dogs mind, what they are thinking and how to work them out.
- Sort invoices and get ready for posting so I get paid for articles that have been published recently
- Add latest articles to web site so regular readers can see them
- Do final drafting of features that need to be sent to Dolls House Magazine next week
- Make tea!!!
- Chill out – it is Sunday
Oh and most important – play with Stan – he has been sat staring at me the while time as I type this and clearly wants t0 play ball right now!