Diwali can be an extremely stressful time for our pets due to loud noisy fireworks. Although there are restrictions in place as to when and how long people can burst crackers, we still hear loud noises in the middle of the night.
And if we can hear them...our pet's CAN definitely hear them loud and clear.
Fireworks and pet care is an age-old problem. There have been several recommendations that I followed in the past. Some of the most common ones are
- Ignore your pet. If you reassure your pet's fear it reinforces it.
- Tire your pet out completely so they will get less affected by the noise
- Keep your pet confined in a small enclosure so they feel safe
I have done all of the above. But now we know how wrong I have been. There has been scientific research that has dug deep into understanding our pet's brains and how they react to loud noises.
Every pet is an individual and will have their own strategies to deal with the fireworks. Some animals get affected a lot while others seem to not care. I live with three dogs and two of them are sleeping through thunderstorms and fireworks. However, Cleopatra, despite the strength in her name, is absolutely terrified of loud noises. She is quite sound sensitive and Diwali is not an easy time for both of us.
So What Should We Do?
There are several things you can do to help your pet. Making good routines, helping them feel safe and ruling out pain in your pet will help. But I feel you would benefit if heard these tips from an expert.
- Take 1 hour out of your routine to listen to a video by veterinary behaviourist Dr. Amber Batson. In the video she shares great insight into your pet's brain, fear response and tips while talking with Ana Isabel.
- Make notes while listening
- Try to understand your pet's body language, stress signs and understand when you need to step in to help
Dr Amber Batson in conversation with Ana Isabel