Fireworks and Protecting your Pets
November through to December is a major celebratory period, particularly when it comes to fireworks. As dazzling and exciting as fireworks may be to look at, the loud noises that come with the spectacle can be distressing, especially for pets. Here are three things you can do to eliminate the stress for your furry family members.
Keep them Indoors
The safest place for your pets to be when the noise starts is inside. Close windows and doggy doors so they can’t get out in a panic. As an extra precaution, make sure your pets are microchipped so you can find them if they do manage to get out.
Create a Safe Space
A pet in distress is likely to find a place to hide. Under furniture, in cupboards or in the bathroom are common places that pets look for comfort. Make it easier for them by creating a safe, comfy, covered den in a quiet room in the house. Use a kennel, pet carrier or bed, cover the top with blankets that will block out both light and sound and include your pet’s favourite toys.
If your pet has found a safe spot that makes them comfortable, leave them alone and don’t try to coax them out.
Block it Out
Keep your pet calm by staying calm yourself and comfort them if that is what you usually do when they are stressed. Buffer as much as you can by closing doors, windows and curtains. Playing music or the TV is also a great way to block out sound. Have a look at your streaming platform of choice for pet calming playlists.
The use of fireworks in South Africa is controlled by the Explosives Act, with additional municipal bylaws that control the days and times when fireworks can be set off with permission and not within 500m of any buildings. Before celebrating with fireworks, be sure to check with your local authority and be considerate towards the humans and animals who may be affected by the noise.
If you have any issues with illegal firework use, contact the SAPS.
Celebration dates and times to keep in mind (based on Johannesburg Bylaws)
Guy Fawkes Day, 5 November from 7pm to 10pm
Diwali, 14 November from 7pm to 10pm
Christmas Eve, 24 December from 7pm to 10pm
Day of Goodwill, 26 December from 7pm to 10pm
New Year’s eve, 31 December from 11pm to 1am
New Year’s Day, 1 January 2017 from 7pm to 10pm