Fireworks and pets

Follow these easy tips to help your pets to remain relaxed and happy when using fireworks:

  • on the evenings you expect fireworks, ensure that your pet is safe indoors and secure doors, windows and cat flaps
  • make sure your dog or cat is microchipped. If they do escape, frightened confused animals can easily get lost or injured and it is important that they are easily identified
  • ensure dogs are taken out early in the evening and cats are provided with a litter tray
  • draw curtains to reduce outside noise and play music or have the TV turned on to help mask the noise of fireworks
  • ignore any fearful behaviour. Do not try to comfort your pet. The animal will pick up on your anxiety and this may make the problem worse and fussing a pet who appears frightened can reward this negative behaviour
  • don’t punish your pet either. This only confirms that there was something to be afraid of
  • if your pet hides in a corner or under a bed, leave it alone and do not try to coax it out. This ‘bolthole’ is where the animal feels most secure
  • try not to go out during such potentially upsetting events. Seeing you acting normally will help your pets feel more settled
  • if you are still worried or if the pet takes a long time to recover from the experience, contact your vet for further assistance or for referral for behavioural therapy