As the nights draw in, some owners are bracing themselves for the fear their pets will feel as fireworks are set off.
It may seem a little early to be talking about fireworks, but almost a quarter of dog owners (23%) say their pets are afraid of them. Taking action now can help prevent their suffering over the next few months.
PDSA Vet Nurse, Nina Downing, said: “It’s horrible to see your pet in a distressed state and anyone who has had a pet that suffers from fireworks phobia will know how challenging it can be.
“What are just loud bangs to us can be terrifying to pets because they have such sensitive hearing. They can shake with fear, they might go to the toilet in the house, destroy furniture, and could even injure themselves if they panic or run away.”
One of our personal favourites for this are the calming products of Pet Remedy that thanks to the fact that they use a combination of herbal oils works on all memmals unlike pheromones that are species specific.
And for this year’s party season they’ve put together a special Party Season Campaign as sadly Bonfire night is just the beginning of the firework noises in the UK nowadays.
Speaking about their campaign, Martyn from Pet Remedy said:
“Traditionally, bonfire night in November has been recognised as a stressful time for pets. But pet owners should remember that fireworks are now common from Halloween in October right through to Chinese New Year in February. Occasions such as Diwali, Christmas and New Year’s Eve all add to the stress. In addition to fireworks, other triggers for stress include parties, lots of house visitors, loud music, changes to routine, even Christmas decorations and excited children with new toys!”
PET REMEDY, manufacturers of the unique and clinically proven natural de-stress and calming range, have launched their Party Season campaign and are already celebrating a Best New Product Award.
Pet Remedy offers a natural solution to stress using their unique and patented blend of Valerian absolute oil with Vetiver, Basil & Clary Sage. These essential oils have a tiny molecular structure which makes them very concentrated, aromatic, and easily able cross the brain-blood barrier.
We’ve of course trialled this product with our own cats and are fully behind its statement as you can see from our post with Oliver & Nubia for example.
Last year Pet Remedy got an official confirmation of the good their products do as judges at the recent PATS new product awards voted the Pet Remedy Party Season Survival Kit as best new pet care product. Martyn Barklett-Judge, Managing Director of Pet Remedy commented
“The Judges were unanimous and it was a huge category which makes the award all the more special”
Pet Remedy’s new Party Season Survival Kit is described as “All you need to help keep your pet calm and relaxed during the party season ” It contains a plug-in diffuser, 15ml calming spray and individual calming wipes at an RRP of £25.
Of course, in addition to using products such as this to help calm your pets during stressful times like this, it’s also important to look at other means of making your pet more comfortable. One of the leading UK charities, the PDSA, offers some additional advice on this:
Nina advises any owners with firework-phobic pets to take action as early as possible. Here are her top tips:
- Buy a sound therapy CD or stream them online. Gradually introduce your pet to these types of noises by playing them quietly in another room. Reward your pet when they remain calm, but if they become anxious then stop immediately and try again later with a lower volume. When they show no reaction, very gradually increase the volume and duration over a period of several weeks.
- Build a hideaway den with blankets and cushions for your pet now so they can get used to it. This should be somewhere they feel safe. Ideal places for dogs include behind the sofa or under a table, whereas cats often feel safest when high up. A safely secured cat bed on a shelf or wardrobe may be their preferred option. Don’t force them to use this, but do reward them with praise or a healthy treat when they do, so they build a positive association.
- Bringing rabbits or other small animals indoors is a great idea on fireworks night, but it’s best to bring them in a few days before, so they can get used to their new environment before the noise begins.
- For severe phobias, we recommend speaking to your vet or veterinary nurse, who will be able to discuss various options including referral to an accredited behaviourist.
Nina continued: “We can’t stop fireworks from happening, but with some advanced preparation and patience we can make a big difference to the amount of anxiety and stress our pets’ experience.”
To get your free PDSA guide for helping your pet cope with fireworks go to www.pdsa.org.uk/fireworks.
PDSA is the UK’s leading vet charity. We’re on a mission to improve pet wellbeing through prevention, education and treatment. Support from players of People’s Postcode Lottery helps us reach even more pet owners with vital advice and information.