How to keep animals safe this Bonfire Night

An animal charity has delivered a guidance for pet owners in the run up to Bonfire Night.

In Wales alone last year, the RSPCA received 32 calls in the relation to fireworks in October and November. Its also estimated that 45 per cent of dogs in the UK show of fear when they hear fireworks.

However, the charity says that the phobia that dogs have of fireworks is treatable and there is no need for pets to suffer each year.

Lisa Richards, RSPCA welfare expert, said: “Countless pet owners will be dreading the run-up to Bonfire Night because of the distress it causes to their animals.

“But there are ways to help your pets learn to be less afraid of loud noises. Planning ahead and speaking to your vet about the options available is a great start.”

The RSPCA’s advice includes:

  • Where possible, keep pets are indoors when fireworks are going off
  • Ensure pets are microchipped in case they try to escape
  • Close all curtains and windows
  • Turn on the television or play music to try to mask the sound of fireworks
  • Provide pets with a safe place to hide or burrow
  • Partially cover animal enclosures with a blanket for soundproofing
  • Use a ‘Sounds Scary’ CD to help dogs learn to be less afraid of loud noises
  • Use pheromone diffusers that can help dogs and cats feel calmer
  • Never punish your pet for appearing frightened
  • Speak to your vet or animal behaviourist for further advice – they will issue treatment in certain cases

Reece Payling, a dog owner from Sheffield said, “I don’t like bonfire night one bit. Before I owned dogs, I was never a huge fan but did enjoy the odd few fireworks. Now however, I cannot rest when my poor dogs are so anxious and troubled with the constant loud bangs.

“I’ve even had to resort to medication for my dogs this year to try and calm them down because otherwise they are just too restless and agitated.”