As Australia gears up for a night of fun, festivities and fireworks, spare a thought for the pets who might be frightened by loud noises, crowded house parties and fireworks.
Scott Charters of Petbarn said they often get pet owners visiting their stores in the lead up to the holiday period seeking advice on everything from how to bring their dog on a driving holiday to tips on how to reduce pet anxiety due to loud fireworks.
“Fireworks are common [at] year's end. Keep your pet indoors, preferably in a room with the blinds drawn and white noise such as a TV or radio pumping to distract them from the bright lights and loud noises going on outside. Taking your pet for a long walk that afternoon may even increase the chances of your pet sleeping through the festivities,” Charters said.
If your dog lives in the yard ensure he or she is armed with ample identification, in the case they run away from stress brought on from the loud noises and bright lights. All pets should be microchipped, however an identification collar on outdoor pets is handy for quick reference and recovery.
It's also important to observe your pet's behaviour and not interfere with their instincts at time of stress.
"Animals usually indicate their preferences such as under a bed or inside a wardrobe. Allow it to go where it wants to feel safe. Close bird cages, rabbit hutches and other fixed enclosures and ensure the pet door and windows are closed and locked," states RSPCA Victoria.
"Horses can also become extremely anxious from loud noises and escape -- we recommend you consult your equine vet for advice on preparing your horses."
If you know that your pet is extremely fearful of fireworks it is advised to consult your vet beforehand to see if prescription medication is an option.
Lastly, if you're roadtripping back home from time away with your pet, be sure to factor your furry friend in when planning the route home -- ensuring there are ample stops.
“While you may be excited about an exotic holiday in a fun location, to your pet, suddenly having all new surroundings can be very daunting. Take your time getting to and from the destination and include lots of food and toilet breaks," Charters said.
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