Keeping Animals Safe During Fireworks Night
With Fireworks Night just days away most of us humans are getting excited about the dramatic displays and kaleidoscope of colours soon to be illuminating the sky, however many of us with animals no matter how large or small are thinking animal safety.
As we all look forward to; the bonfires, the mulled wine, the sticky toffee apples… Many pets and animals do not experience the joy that we do at this time of the year. In fact, most pets and animals are scared of fireworks, and their health can sometimes be negatively affected by them.
Our Tips On Animal Safety During The Firework Season
To ensure you – and your furry friends – have a stress-free weekend, here are some top tips on how to prepare and care for your pets during firework displays.
Dogs & Cats
Given that dogs have three times the hearing capacity of us humans, the frightfully loud explosions which accompany firework displays seem much louder to them and can lead to hearing loss in certain situations. Fireworks can provoke fear and stress in cats and dogs alike, which can lead to escapes and disappearances.
To best help your dog or cat:
- Keep them inside, with all outside doors shut and cat flaps blocked to prevent escape.
- Walk dogs in the daytime, prior to firework events.
- Avoid leaving them alone in the house, and give them lots of loving care and attention.
- Close the curtains to reduce the visuals and lesson, slightly, the noise.
- Prepare a ‘safe space’ or den where they can hide if they become scared.
- If they are accustomed to background noise, play music, the radio, or the television as a distraction.
- Ensure they are wearing identifiable collars and are microchipped, just in case they manage to escape.
- Stay calm.
Rabbits, Hamsters & Guinea Pigs
Though they may not have the aural capacity of dogs, small pets can become easily frightened by an explosive Bonfire Night.
To best help your rabbit, hamster or guinea pig:
- If possible, bring hutches and cages inside, or into a garage or a shed, where they will have less exposure to the frightening sights and sounds.
- If this is not possible, partly covers hutches and cages with thick blankets to muffle the sounds and reduce the visuals. Turning cages to face a wall can also help, but some pets find a total blackout disconcerting in itself – see what works for yours.
- Provide extra bedding in their cages in case they wish to burrow more than usual.
Horses & Ponies
As prey animals, horses are constantly on high alert. This hypervigilance means that horses can easily feel threatened by firework displays, especially if they are very close to their stable or field. To best help your horse or pony:
- Don’t ride during firework displays
- Keep horses and ponies in a familiar environment with their normal routine, to help them feel safe and secure.
- Check locally for planned displays, and alert organisers of the presence of your animal. Ask if they will set off the explosive devices in the opposite direction.
- Ensure fences around your field are secure – horses are prone to jump fences when fearful of fireworks.
- Check the stable for anything that might cause harm if your animal were to become agitated.
- Ensure you or someone experienced stays with your horse during the display.
- If you are worried about your horse’s reaction consider moving them for the night in question.
- Beware of your own safety in close confines with a fearful horse or pony.
Once your animal safety checks have all been carried out, why not come along to our wonderful Charity Bonfire Night in aid of The Good Grief Project on the 1st of November, here at the Dallas Burston Polo Club.