How Do I Calm My Pet During Fireworks?
Although most people enjoy the fireworks that come along with celebrating Guy Fawkes, unfortunately, many animals are very scared of fireworks.
If you are a pet owner, chances are you know all too well about the stress and anxiety that your cat or dog can feel on Guy Fawkes night. It is the sudden loud sharp noises coupled with bright flashes that often make pets afraid and seek safety. The fact that Guy Fawkes only happens once a year and turns your pet's usual controlled environment into a battleground adds to the confusion and anxiety most pets feel.
When thinking about how to keep your dog or cat safe and calm on Guy Fawkes night it is worth remembering that our pets’ senses are far more sensitive than our own. A dog's hearing is twice, and a cat's hearing is three times, more sensitive than ours. So not only are the sounds of fireworks very loud they can also be painful for our pets.
The good news is if you spend some time planning there are some simple things that you can do to help your pet stay calm during fireworks this Guy Fawkes.
Keep your cat inside to help keep them calm during fireworks
5 tips to plan ahead and reduce stress this Guy Fawkes
1. Check your pet's microchip & ID tag
Each year, a lot of pets are reported missing as they get spooked by the fireworks and escape from home. By making sure their microchip works and their tags are easy to read you can help rescuers reunite you with your beloved pet.
2. Walk your dog early
Ensure that on Guy Fawkes night you take the dogs out for a longer walk early in the day to avoid being out walking in the early evening or evening when fireworks could be set off and scare your pet. By walking your pet for longer than normal you are also helping to tire them out so they are more likely to rest and go to sleep early.
Take your dog out for a long walk or to the park to tire them out
3. Keep your pets safe inside
No matter what type of pet you have it is best to keep them indoors on Guy Fawkes night so they won’t see the flashes and the bangs will be muffled. Once you have your pet safely inside close the doors, windows and the curtains and turn up the volume on your radio or TV to disguise the sounds of the fireworks.
4. Keep their mind & body active
A good way to help your pet relax is to offer them distractions to keep their mind off the fireworks such as enrichment or food-stuffed toys like Kongs to give the dog something to focus on other than the noise. Slow feeding puzzles are also good as they help to make your pet work for their food keeping them busy and active.
Provide a safe space for your pets during fireworks
5. Provide a safe space
Creating a ‘den’ for dogs and providing enough hiding spaces for cats will help them retreat to this safe space and stay calm. Despite your best efforts, your pet may still be nervous. Adaptil & Feliway products are easy to use and are scientifically proven to help reduce stress and anxiety.
Adaptil is a replication of the dog appeasing pheromone and is scientifically proven to promote calm and secure behaviour in dogs scared of loud noises.
Feliway contains the feline facial pheromone used by cats to mark their territory as safe and secure. Feliway is clinically proven to help keep cats calm and relaxed.
Stay home with your dog if you can, especially if you live in an area close to fireworks being let off, or if you know your dog is very sensitive to the noise, and have the TV or radio on loud to muffle the sounds of the fireworks. With a little forward planning and the aid of proven remedies, you can help your pets experience a much calmer Guy Fawkes night.