Fireworks & pets don’t mix

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Published: 28 Oct 2017

As Guy Fawkes night approaches, one big issue is pets being frightened by the sound of fireworks.

Firework noise can reach up to 150 decibels (as loud as a jet engine).

Dogs, cats and other pets have far more sensitive hearing than ours, and they have no understanding of the concept of celebrations with fireworks.  For many the noises and flashes make them fearful for their lives.

Here are some tips to make your pets more comfortable on Guy Fawkes night:

  • Keep your animals inside, even better if you can find somewhere dark and quiet near the middle of the house, and be sure they don’t try to escape if frightened.
  • If you are not going to a fireworks event, it may be a good idea to stay at home to reassure them, or find a reliable person who can.
  • It’s good to leave the TV or radio on for them if you are out, as it will mask the sudden sound of the fireworks and make them feel more secure.
  • Ensuring your dog is tagged and all your animals are microchipped will help you get reunited with them. See elsewhere in the noticeboard for a free offer for dog owners.
  • If you have small pets that live outdoors, try and soundproof their living space as much as you can, and provide extra bedding.

If you’re organising a fireworks event:

  • Never let off fireworks near animals.
  • Let your neighbours with pets know your plans, drop a note in their mailbox.
  • If it’s a large scale event, you can let local vets and pet shops know.

For livestock farmers:

  • You may want to move your animals away from areas where firework parties are likely to take place. They should do this well in advance so that the animals have a chance to get used to their new surroundings.
  • Livestock owners must also check that paddocks are well fenced and secure before the fireworks start. Frightened farm animals that get out of their paddocks can harm themselves and be a serious safety risk.

Last updated: 24 Feb 2021