Well that time of year has come round again when Mia won’t go outside in the dark – all because of fireworks. She really doesn’t like them. It’s annoying because for a few weeks we have to change our schedule with her. She has to go for a wee earlier in the evening otherwise she won’t go out at all until the next morning which is no good. The nights draw in due to the clocks changing which means we have even less time to take her for a walk before it goes dark. Don’t get me wrong, she loves a walk in the dark, especially on a nearby field where she will hurtle round like a lunatic thinking it is hilarious that we can hear her but can’t see her. It’s just these few weeks where fireworks are readily available (New Year is another bad time for her). We live in quite a built up village so every night for a few weeks we will have someone setting off fireworks, we are convinced get louder every year! The only good thing is that we are on the edge of the village with open countryside and fields less than 100 yards away so not too bad. Our last house was more central and whilst living there we had another Black Labrador – he loved fireworks! He would insist on sitting out in the garden, watching the lights in the sky and barking at the big bangs when they came. Another Labrador we have had (a bitch) hated them and would hide in the shower every time they were being set off!
Don’t get me wrong, I personally like fireworks, so long as they are in an organised safe setting. But I do wish they were limited to only a few nights a year, that way we can prepare Mia on those nights, make sure she is wearing her homemade “scare” wrap, the TV or radio is on and we are not out for a walk. We were caught out the other week when we walked together to pick our daughter up from a party. Now this was 2 weeks ago so we thought we would be OK to walk Mia with us in the dark to get her. Nope, we arrived at the venue just as someone decided they were going to start their 40 min long display of banging fireworks. We finally got back home with a very scared Mia, 2 frustrated adults and 1 cold child. We realised that they were starting even earlier this year and have had to put Mia’s night-time walks on hold for now. At least until after 5th November
We do all we can to ensure she is does not get more scared than necessary, we close the curtains, we have the TV on and we ensure we don’t fuss her as this can reinforce her reaction the noises. But once they have stopped we will get back to normal, walking her in the dark with her hi-vis on and a torch in hand!