Getting Ready for Fireworks

1st January 2023

As the firework season approaches, we need to remember that our furry friends can find the loud noises and flashes of light very frightening. What can we do to help?

Keep pets indoors

Try to walk dogs before dusk and keep cats indoors after dark. Make sure both dogs and cats are microchipped so that you can be reunited with them if they do become startled and bolt.

Make the house feel safe

Drawing the curtains, having the television or radio on, and acting calmly yourself will help to minimise the effect of fireworks on your pet.

Provide a safe hiding place

Many dogs and cats choose to hide away when the fireworks start. Help your pet by providing a safe, enclosed space well in advance of the firework season. Dogs often appreciate a crate/cage with the door removed and a blanket over the top. Cats like to be up high, in igloo-style beds. During the day, place treats inside the hiding place for your pet to find, helping them to see the hiding place as a place where good things happen. Try not to disturb your pet when they are hiding.

Talk to your vet

If your pet continues to show distress around fireworks despite these measures do speak to your vet. Medication can relieve distress and prevent noise fears from getting more severe over time. New medications specifically for dogs with firework fear have recently been developed. One of these is suitable to use preventatively throughout the 2-3 week firework period, avoiding the problem of having to guess when the fireworks are going to go off!

Any pet that suddenly becomes worried by noises when previously they were unconcerned should have a thorough health check because some medical conditions can cause noise phobias.

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