Remember, remember the fifth of November, says a children’s nursery rhyme. But, as pet retailers know, the bangs and flashes are no longer restricted to a single day. Firework season can begin a week or more beforehand, bringing with it a steady stream of people searching for ways to calm their on-edge pets.
It’ll be a busy fortnight for vets and pet behaviourists as pet owners search for ways to smooth animals’ nerves. Many of the issues associated with fireworks can be dealt with at home. Keeping doors and windows closed, drawing curtains and playing music with a repetitive beat (keep it at a middling volume) is well known advice. Pets take their cues from their owners, so many organisations council against reinforcing fearful behaviour with punishments or reassurance.
If you’re a retailer, no doubt you’re already maneuvering your bonfire night displays into prominent positions. Placing up information on the date and times of local firework displays can come in handy for pet owners. Pheromone diffusers are a popular way to create a calmer atmosphere for cats and dogs. Check your stock levels – these can be equally useful during the festive, noisy Christmas season.
Owners may be hoping to go a step further and coax animals out of their phobias, with help from a vet or animal behaviourist. Socialisation CDs are sometimes used to gradually introduce pets to loud noises, helping them to remain calm. Most, like the RSPCA-approved Sounds Scary CD, will include firework sounds.
Are you looking for more guidance to offer customers? The RSPCA is providing helpful advice for pet owners during the firework season. For more information visit www.petgazette.biz