Fireworks will be here soon!

Remember, remember … your cat during fireworks season

Whilst the celebrations can be great fun for people, cats can be left stressed out, confused or injured by fireworks.  Swale Cats Protection offers the following advice to owners in a bid to keep pet cats safe during the fireworks season.

A few simple precautions can help owners to keep their cat out of harms way:

·     Keep your cat in after dark and ensure they have access to a litter tray

·     Try to reduce outside noise by keeping windows shut and curtains drawn. Playing soothing music or having the TV on may also help. Try not to reinforce fearful behaviour by soothing and reassuring a cat that is looking anxious

·     While cats like to be settled in a cosy, familiar territory such as a comfy bed or favourite chair, when feeling scared they need safe places to hide. Ensure they can exhibit this natural behaviour by providing access to a hiding place, such as under the bed, an igloo-style cat bed or something simple like a cardboard box

·     Make sure all doors and windows are securely closed to prevent your cat from escaping the home

·     A Pheromone plug-in diffuser such as Feliway® can be used to decrease anxiety and spraying and can have a beneficial effect in calming a cat during fireworks. However, you must start using it a couple of weeks before 5 November to maximise the benefit. It should be sited in the room in which your cat chooses to rest. Please speak to your vet for more information  

If you are having your own bonfire night celebration this year, then consider:

·    Buying hand-held cascading fireworks rather than the noisier varieties

·    Holding a ‘silent’ fireworks display – many companies now offer quiet or almost silent fireworks – giving you the same spectacle without the loud bangs

·    Keeping fireworks and bonfire displays as far away from homes as possible, to minimise any adverse effects on animals indoors, although bear in mind the effect these displays will have on wild animals

·    Check bonfires before lighting them to ensure that no small animals are sleeping inside