Fireworks can often lead to anxiety and stress for your pet, many pet owners worry about this time of the year, so here at Compare Pet Care we have put together some top tips on helping you to keep your pet calm.
- Close the curtains/blinds so the bright flashes don’t startle your pet.
- If your dog is of a nervous disposition, try to minimize time spent in the garden, ensure you let them out just before it gets dark to avoid them needing to go out when fireworks will be at their busiest!
- Put on a radio or TV louder than usual to help cover the loud noises.
- Lock your cat flap so they don’t get caught outside, if they are outside when fireworks start it’s more than likely they will find somewhere to hide and not return until a lot later. Giving both you and your cat a restless night!
- Try and remain calm yourself, if you keep checking on them and fussing they will sense that there is something to fear.
- If your dog gets stressed and begins to claw at the carper or furniture in attempt to dig a hole, don’t raise your voice as this will only make the situation ten times worse.
- Cats tend to find a hiding spot behind a sofa or under a bed, leave them here as bringing them out for cuddles won’t help them feel any safer.
If you know your cat is going to react badly to fireworks and become stressed you may wish to help ease this with a product called Feliway, which is available as a spray and plug-in diffuser.
Feliway® is a synthetic copy of the feline facial pheromone, used by cats to mark their territory as safe and secure.
As a result, Feliway® can be used to help comfort and reassure cats, while they cope with a challenging situation and/or help prevent or reduce the stress caused to a cat during a change in their environment.
By mimicking the cat’s natural facial pheromones, Feliway® creates a state of familiarity and security in the cat’s local environment.
The dog equivalent is called DAP (Dog Appeasing Pheromone) this works on the same principles as the Feliway for cats.
The DAP Diffuser can be very effective in many areas of dog behaviour therapy by making it feel less anxious, calmer and safer. These include destructiveness, vocalisation and house soiling brought on by stress, nervousness or anxiousness.
There is also a new product on the market for both cats and dogs, available from Vets, called Zylkene.
Zylkene is not a drug as such, it is a food supplement made from a protein found in milk. The active ingredient is a peptide (a simple sort of protein molecule) which is able to bind temporarily to certain receptors in the brain. This has a calming influence which is similar in some ways to tranquilliser drugs such as diazepam (“Vallium”), but without the side effects. It has been clinically proven to be effective in dogs and cats.
There are stronger treatments available from your Vets, but these are only available to extreme cases, if your pet really does suffer at this time of year contact your Vet and ask about sedatives they can offer.