How to keep your pets safe in firework season

How to keep your pets safe during firework season

Tips for cats and dogs

Pets and fireworks

Some pets find fireworks scary.

And nobody wants to see their pets with ears back, bodies trembling, hiding in the bathtub or crawling under the bed.

So what can we do to help?

Here are some ideas for cats and dogs.

8 ways to help your cat stay calm during fireworks season

1. Be a calm pet parent

Your cat will react to your behaviour and energy. Don’t get excited, stay calm and try not to over-comfort or fuss over your cat. If you stay settled, the chances are your cat will stay settled too.

2. Spend more time at home

Your presence is reassuring for your cat. Your cat loves you, feels safe when you’re around and wants you to be there when there’s a chance they might feel scared.

3. Keep to your cat's routines

Cats are creatures of habit. So stick to regular times for feeding, grooming, play, exercise and other daily adventures.

4. Keep your cat indoors after dark

It will reduce the risk of them getting scared, startled, confused or lost.

5. Create a safe den

A simple cardboard box lined with soft blankets is perfect. Cats love being up high, so maybe you could put the box on a safe and sturdy shelf or table top.

6. Use a pheromone plug-in

A plug-in diffuser can have a calming effect for anxious cats. Begin using it in the weeks before fireworks season and place it in the room where your cat spends most of its time.

7. Play relaxing music  

Loud noises can blend into the background if you’re playing relaxing music in your home or in your cat’s safe space.

8. Nurse wellbeing clinic

If you’re concerned about your cat’s wellbeing, take advantage of a nurse wellbeing clinic. Nurse clinics are included as part of your service within the Joii app.

Plan ahead for calmer dogs during firework season

11 tips to help you and your dog

1. Make your home secure

Don’t leave doors unlocked, windows open or patios ajar and don’t give your dog an opportunity to run away scared. If your dog has never experienced fireworks before, this is always a risk. So prepare to keep your dog safe and in your home. Turn off your doorbell if possible.

2. Consider microchipping

For all the reasons above, chipping your dog can be a good idea before the firework season begins.

3. Make a safe den

Well before the season starts, build a doggy haven. Choose a quiet room, build a bed that’s cozy and comfortable and help your dog feel safe there.

4. Train your dog to the safe den with positive experiences

Place treats and toys in the space to encourage your dog in and get them familiar with it. Long lasting chew toys and stuff feeders are great for this period.

5. Make it the go-to retreat

When fireworks start, your dog might choose to go to the safe space because they know it’s always been safe before. Make it accessible at all times, especially when you’re not there.

6. Walk your dog in daylight

Avoid times when there are likely to be more fireworks. And show your dog to the safe haven before fireworks start.

7. Muffle and block out light and sound

Close windows and curtains. It’s not just the sounds that are stimulating and scary for dogs, it’s the flashing lights too.

8. Play calming backgorund music

A Spotify Playlist of relaxing pet music can help. Here’s a link to one we’ve created for you.

9. Lead by example and ignore the fireworks

Don’t be excited and reactive yourself. If your dog senses that you’re behaving in a strange way, this could be even more confusing or alarming.

10. Never punish your dog when it's scared

This will only create a greater fear association and will be worse in the long run.

11. Behavioural therapy

If your dog becomes overly stressed, fearful or aggressive you could speak to a Joii vet about behavioural therapy. Firework phobia is real and there are positive ways to treat it. Or why not try a nurse wellbeing clinic? Clinics are included as part of your service in the Joii app.

Count on Joii to get you closer to care

Our mission to improve the lives of pets, vets and owners starts with you. Keep Joii on your smartphone for access to nurses, vets, pet symptom checking and clinically validated advice.

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