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Keeping Your Pets Safe During Fireworks Season

A selection of fresh whole, sliced, and ground turmeric

Although a source of entertainment and celebration for us, fireworks can often be frightening for our pets. The sudden flashes and loud noises can be unfamiliar and cause pets to panic or hide. If you are concerned about your pets this fireworks season, read our top tips below for some thoughtful advice.

Create A Safe Place

Create a safe place for your pet to retreat to if they feel scared or overwhelmed. Suggestions include an open dog crate with a blanket over the top, an enclosed cat carrier, or a home-made den under the bed or a table. It's often best not to leave your pet unsupervised if they are stressed by fireworks, but if you need to do so then shut them in a decent sized room where they will be safe, or a crate if they are crate trained and it is safe to do so. Always ensure your pet has access to clean fresh water even if shut away.

Provide Chews & Toys

Provide your pet with their favourite toys or chews! These will help keel them distracted and will also help provide a positive association with fireworks. For cats, try offering them toys containing catnip or silvervine. For dogs, remember not to leave them unattended with certain chews to reduce the risk of choking.

Close Your Curtains

Close windows and curtains to help muffle the sound of fireworks being set off, especially in the evening. Having the television or radio on can also help cover the noise and provide a distraction. YouTube has some great videos available especially for to help keep pets calm and block out stress-inducing noise.

Restrict Garden Access

If your cat or dog has access to a petflap, please ensure it is locked before any fireworks start. This will help prevent them from accidentally being in the garden when the displays begin and minimises the risk of them becoming scared and running away. For dogs, if you need to let them outside for any reason, ensure they are kept on a lead for this same reason. Some dogs are capable of scaling six foot fences so never underestimate them!

Plan Your Dog Walks

Take your dog for a walk long before any fireworks displays are due to start. If you believe fireworks may be set off near where you walk, keep your dog on a lead in case any sudden noises startle them. It's also good to be aware that many people host their own private fireworks displays in their gardens, so you may not be able to predict exactly when fireworks will start to go off.

Keep Calm

Our behaviour can have an impact on our pets, so it's important to try and keep calm even if our pets are stressed. If your pet prefers to hide away, do not encourage them to come out and instead offer calm reassurance. Under no circumstances should you reprimand your pet for showing fearful behaviours. These sorts of behaviours are totally natural and we want our pets to feel safe to express themselves so we can work with them accordingly. Instead, praise them when they show calm behaviours and reassure them.

Provide An Early Dinner

Feed your pet sometime before the fireworks start. A full stomach can help pets feel calm and some animals may not want to eat when they feel anxious. Be sure to also have treats on hand just in case!

Be Aware Of Behaviours

It's incredibly important to be aware of our pets' behaviours. Not all signs of stress are obvious and include behaviours such as yawning, nose licking and panting. With cats, excessive meowing, increased sleeping and overeating can be signs of stress. If you are concerned about your pet's unusual behaviour, please get in contact with your vet.

Double Check Your Pet's Microchip

If something bad does happen and your pet goes missing, it will be so important that their microchip details are up to date! This will make it much easier for your pet to be reunited with you if they are taken to a vets or rescue facility. We hope this never happens but it is also best to prepare for the worst, just in case!

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