Liberty and Leashes: Keeping Your Pets Calm During Summer Fireworks

Liberty and Leashes: Keeping Your Pets Calm During Summer Fireworks

Key takeaways

  • Pets are driving home purchase decisions more than ever before.
  • Summertime fireworks and storms stress pets – and their owners.
  • Connect with your clients by sharing pet tips.
  • Tips about home warranty protection can reduce homeowner stress.

If you’ve ever heard a puppy whimpering during a fireworks display or watched your cat dive for cover when sparklers burst in the air, you know that pets experience stress from loud unfamiliar sounds and flashing lights in the sky. As a real estate agent, you may not think expertise about pets is part of your job description. You may rethink that when you realize that 70% of households have a pet — and that number has grown tremendously since the 56% of households that had one in 1988.

Pets have become more important than ever to homebuyers, too. According to the National Association of Realtors research, 19% of homebuyers said they factored pets into their neighborhood choice. Nearly one-third (32%) of unmarried couples considered their pets when choosing a neighborhood. A location near a vet was essential to these buyers, along with bigger lots, walkability, and parks.

10 tips to keep your pet calm during fireworks

Pets can quickly become agitated or frightened by fireworks, which occur throughout the summer in some locations. While July Fourth usually has the biggest — and loudest — display, fireworks are frequently part of other July activities, including baseball games and concerts. Summer thunderstorms, which are even more frequent than fireworks displays in some parts of the country, can cause similar stress to your pet.

Here are10 expert tips to try with your pets and share with your clients:

Weeks or months before fireworks, try training your pets.

  1. Play fireworks sounds at low volume and scatter treats on the floor so your pet associates the noise with a reward. Gradually increase the volume over several sessions and keep the treats coming.
  2. Set up a safe place for your pet. If your dog likes its crate or your cat has a favorite chair, make sure you can add a blanket, food and water so they can stay there during a thunderstorm or fireworks display. Try to encourage your pet to pick a place where you can close the blinds and adjust the lights for comfort.
  3. If you’re aware from previous experience that your pet gets frightened by fireworks and storms, consider buying an “anxiety vest,” which functions similarly to a weighted blanket for people.
  4. For severe anxiety, consult your vet about prescription medicines that may be needed to keep reactions at bay during a storm.
  5. Before a storm hits or the fireworks burst overhead, ensure your pet has an ID tag or a chip. Sometimes frightened pets will try to escape during loud noise, and a chip will help find them.

When fireworks are scheduled, or a thunderstorm is predicted, try these tips:

  1. Exercise your pet before the noise starts. A tired pet is more likely to sleep.
  2. If you dislike the noise of thunder, the crack of lightning, or the sounds of fireworks, try to stay calm. Pets pick up on their "parent's" emotional cues.
  3. Close the curtains, turn on the lights to mask the flashes of lightning or fireworks, and turn on a radio, noise machine or fan to cover the noise.
  4. Let your pet hide in a safe place if they want, but if they stay near you, cuddle or pet them or play with a toy to distract them from the activity outside.
  5. Keep your pet indoors or on a leash, even in a fenced yard, to prevent them from escaping.

Helping your clients by sharing tips about how they can help keep their pets happy and healthy is a great way to connect and engage with clients during the summer. More and more pets are playing a role in the homes people buy.

Real estate agents can help their clients protect the place that keeps everyone comfortable and safe — including their pets ­— with a Cinch home warranty. Learn more at cinchrealestate.com.