Bonfire Night - How To Look After Your Pet On This Frightening Night

Bonfire Night - How To Look After Your Pet On This Frightening Night

Posted by Connor Whelan on 5th Nov 2016

It is a highlight in the calendar for many people, but for the four legged members of our families Bonfire Night can cause nothing but stress and worry. With animals having very acute hearing, the loud bangs and whistles that accompany fireworks can cause them actual pain in their ears, and as a result their levels of stress and worry increase even more.

Fortunately though, there are things you can do to lessen the impact that fireworks can have on your pet, so if you have a dog, cat, horse, or even hamster, please take the time to read our advice on how to keep your pet safe through a night which is extremely frightening for them.

Dogs and Cats – Keeping Them Safe

Dog and Cat

  • Always keep your dogs and cats inside during bonfire night (and nights either side of the event itself)
  • Walk your dog earlier in the day before the fireworks begin
  • Ensure all windows, doors, and even catflaps are secured to keep the noise to a minimum
  • Make sure your pet has a form of identification on them such as a collar or I.D chip so that if the worst were to happen and your pet bolted during the fireworks, you would be able to relocated them more easily
  • Prepare a den for your pet to seek shelter in and create a space within which they can feel safe. Under your bed with some of your old clothes is a good place to start
  • Most importantly, try to avoid leaving your pets alone during this time as your presence will be comforting for them

Small Pets (Hamsters, Rabbits, Birds) – Keeping Them Safe

Rabbit

  • Bring your pets hutch/cage/enclosure inside if it is not already to limit the noise the animal will be subject to. This does not have to be in your house, but could be a quiet shed or garage if they are available
  • Give your pet extra bedding so that it can burrow down and feel safe
  • If you are unable to bring your pet inside for any reason, turn the enclosure around so that it is facing a wall or a fence instead of an open expanse
  • If you have a bird as a pet, you should cover its aviary with a towel or cloth to deaden the bangs, but please make sure that there is still enough ventilation for the bird
  • Should you be hosting a bonfire in your garden, please check under the wood pile as animals such as hedgehogs like to burrow down inside these conveniently placed hedgehog sized homes!

Horses – Keeping Them Safe

Horses

  • Try to ensure that fireworks are never set off near a field that contains horses (or any other livestock for that matter)
  • Keep your horse in a familiar environment as sticking to their usual routine will give them peace of mind
  • If you know that your horse does react badly to loud noises however, consider consulting your vet or moving it to a different location for the night
  • Do not risk riding your horse when you know fireworks may be set off nearby
  • If you must leave your horse in the care of another person during firework season, then make sure you leave clear notes on how to best look after them

Please take a moment to think about the animals when you are enjoying yourself this bonfire night, and if you can do anything to help an animal in distress, make sure you do!


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