As a Veterinary Nurse this is a crucial time to help educate pet owners on how to help their pets with the stresses of fireworks.
Yes animals get stressed and so do owners but the main thing to remember for you is to to not get too anxious about it as your pet will pick up on it and in turn be worse.
Fireworks will be going off around you and there is nothing you can do about it so DON`T STRESS!!
Here are a few pointers that could help with the firework period.
Please note that these pointers are not guaranteed to work with every animal, each animal is different. These are my own recommendations, your own Veterinary Surgeon`s advise may differ.
- If possible try to act as normal as possible, do not make a big scene if fireworks start up suddenly; animals, like children like routines.
- With dogs try to take them for a long walk before it gets dark to tire them out and to minimize the chances of them being out in the dark when the fireworks start.
- A meal of pasta can be given early evening to dogs to help make them slightly dopey, downside is that if they become too stressed and vomit it wont be pretty!!
- Keep the curtains shut and TV on a little louder than normal, or turn the radio on to help drain out the noise of the fireworks.
- Keep cats inside overnight and provide a litter tray.
- Ignore bad behavior or signs of stress, eg panting and pacing.
- Provide distractions eg new toys or treats.
- DO NOT discipline your pets if they do mess in the house, this will only make the situation worse.
- There are many products available from your vets that can help calm your pets down prior to the fireworks going off. A diffuser called Adaptil for dogs and Feliway for cats can help to reduce anxiety. Plus natural remedies such as Zylkene tablets and even Bach`s Rescue Remedy!!
- For rabbits and guinea pigs that live outside DO NOT bring them inside for only a night or two, this can do more harm than good as they are acclimatized to the temperatures outside. Just provide plenty of bedding materials for them to nestle down in.
If you have any questions or concerns about your pets please do not hesitate to ring your local Veterinary Surgery for advise, we don`t bite and aim of our job is to prevent problems before they happen!!!