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Fireworks Frighten Animals

Fireworks nowadays are not just confined to bonfire night, they feature at all kinds of events. Unfortunately, enjoyed by people, they frighten many animals.

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If you're worried about your pet's reaction to fireworks you should ask your vet for advice, the earlier you do this the better the outcome.

How to help

  • Muffle the sounds of the fireworks by closing windows and curtains. Put on some music or the TV.
  • Keep them inside. Take dogs out for toilet purposes before dark and close catflaps. A firework going off while they are outside could lead to a fear of going out
  • Do not fuss over or try to reassure them when they are frightened. If they rely on you for comfort during frightening events, they will be less able to cope when you are out and this will make the problem worse in the long term
  • Stay calm. Your pet can sense if you are worried and this can increase their stress. Let them hide then give lots of fuss when they emerge after the fireworks have finished.
  • Don't get angry. The behaviour may be annoying but they are scared and getting cross will make things worse. Don't try to remove your pet from thier hiding place, this could lead to aggression.
  • Talk to your Vet. They can advise short term measures which may include medication if your pet is very distressed. This can help prevent the fear getting worse. Your vet can also advise a longer term preventative approach.

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What to do in the long term

Fear of fireworks doesn't get better on it's own, it is likely to get worse over time and lead to other behavioural problems. Behaviour therapy (including noise desensitisation) is generally very successful at changing the response to fireworks and other loud noises, the earlier you seek help, the better the outcome is likely to be. Ask us about behaviour consultations with our qualified nurses.