Natural History MuseumAugust 24, 2017
Spear TravelsAugust 24, 2017
Firework season is approaching, and for many pets this can be a very stressful time. So, this month’s article focusses on our top tips for minimising the stress of fireworks/thunderstorms for your companions.
- Make a safe hiding place for your pet – many pets feel safer if they have a comfortable little den to hide away in. Cats often like to be up high, so a secure den on a top shelf can be very useful.
- Try to walk your dog before it goes dark to minimise the risk of being outside when the fireworks start.
- Play the radio/television quietly in the background to help muffle the bangs of fireworks/thunder.
- Keep the curtains closed to reduce the flashes that your pet sees.
A ‘desensitization’ programme can be very useful in animals IF STARTED BEFORE firework/thunder season gets under way. This involves playing a CD of ‘scary noises’ very quietly in the background whilst your pet is eating/playing/happy. This can then gradually be increased in volume to get your pet ready for ‘the real thing’. Your vet can direct you towards the relevant CD.
In some animals, their level of fear is such that medications will be required in addition to the above. Therapeutic intervention can involve pheromones, mood enhancers and mild sedatives.
Book an appointment with your vet sooner rather than later to discuss which therapy would be most appropriate for your pet, as some of these therapies take a few weeks to start working.
Dr. Kathryn Miller MRCVS