With Bonfire night just around the corner and Diwali celebrations taking place last week, firework season has well and truly begun. While for many this can be an exciting time, for our pets this time of year can often be stressful and scary.
Cats have extremely good hearing, so fireworks can be much more stressful for them. If you have a cat at home who struggles with fireworks, or you’ve recently introduced a new cat into your life and you want to make this firework season as calm for them as possible, we’ve put together a few tips to help you sail into the New Year with calmer cats.
How can I tell if my cat is scared or stressed by fireworks?
A scared cat may appear startled by the loud noises and might run away and hide in the house, but there are other signs that your cats may be stressed:
- Eating or drinking less than usual
- Restlessness: pacing or circling
- Showing fearful body language
- Being withdrawn or hiding
- Excessively grooming
While we can’t stop the fireworks altogether, there are some steps we can take to make the fireworks season a more pleasant experience for our cats.
Keep track of important dates and local events: Bonfire Night falls on the 5th of November, and while you can expect many fireworks to be going off on Saturday night, your local organised firework displays may be taking place on a different evening, so be sure to keep an eye on the calendar.
Bring outdoor cats inside early
If your cats have access to the outdoors, make sure to bring them inside early while it’s still light on any days when you expect fireworks. Keep any cat flaps shut, and make sure to provide access to litter trays, food and water while your cats are indoors overnight.
Make a cosy hiding place and turn up the TV
Create a cosy hiding place for your cats in a room they usually like to spend time in. Keep the curtains and blinds closed to block out as much of the light and noise as possible, and consider increasing the volume on your TV show (or popping on a playlist of calming cat music!) to help disguise any sudden or scary noises from outside.
While it might be tempting to close all the doors and keep you and your cat inside one room, this can result in some cats feeling stressed so it’s best to avoid.
Provide enrichment and distraction for cats who want to play
Playing with your cat or providing them with some cat-friendly treats can be a great way to distract them from what might be going on outside. But if they’d rather just hide away in their bed, don’t force them to play—they might just prefer to snooze the evening away.
Stay calm and keep things as normal as possible
Our cats can pick up on our own nerves and stress, so don’t make a big fuss over them and interact with them as normal—showing anxiety ourselves could risk reinforcing their fears of the fireworks. Our cats are more likely to remain calm if we’re calm ourselves!
01/11/2022 by NatuTeam