Keep your pets safe during bonfire season

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The bright lights and bangs of bonfire night will be enjoyed across the town, but for pets it can be the most nerve-racking time of the year.

Statistics show approximately 80 per cent of dogs have a phobia of fireworks which can leave them terrified.

But cats, rabbits and guinea pigs can also be scared on November 5.

Huw Stacey, from the vets within Pets at Home, said, “The top tips include providing your pet with a cosy hiding place, making sure all escape routes (cat flaps, windows and doors) are closed and shutting curtains or blinds.

“We understand families want to enjoy bonfire night, so we want to encourage pet owners to follow some simple steps to help the whole household have a happy and stress free evening.

Pet owners are advised to provide indoor pets with a den or hiding place inside the house where they can feel safe.

Outdoor pets should be given lots of extra bedding to provide them with somewhere to burrow.

Owners should ignore fearful behaviour, such as panting, shaking and whining. Animals may pick up on their owners’ anxiety, which could make the problem worse.

Provide extra litter trays for cats. Litter trays will be used more as your cat is confined to the house.

Provide distractions, in the form of new toys and chews, during periods when fireworks are occurring.

Draw curtains and put the television on to mask the noise of fireworks.

If pets do become scared, do not punish your pet. This will only make your pet more distressed.

Try not to leave your pets alone when fireworks are going off. Your pet may hurt themselves during this time.

For further information on keeping pets calm visit www.vets4pets.com/fireworks.

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