Is Your Cat Afraid of Fireworks? Know How to Help Them this Summer
When it comes to fireworks and cats, they can be a dangerous mix. Many cats, no matter the age or breed, fear loud noises. The sudden “bang” of a firework show could send them into a frenzy, making them feel unsafe. It’s important to know some ways to keep your cat calm this summer, especially in July.
Having a scared cat can do more than hurt them, but you as well. Scratches, bites, and other injuries can occur when a cat feels threatened or unsafe. This month we’re going to discuss some ways to keep your kitty safe and calm during a firework show. If you’re celebrating the Fourth of July holiday, keep your pets in mind. All animals may struggle with fireworks, especially in close proximity to your home.
Always Keep Your Cat Indoors During a Firework Show
Our biggest tip for keeping your cat safe is to keep them indoors during the firework show. If your cat is outside and they hear an unexpected loud noise, there’s a good chance they’ll run away. Busy roads and wildlife are just a few threats to a cat that is usually indoors, or one that is away from home. Check your city’s event schedule to see if there are any community events that have fireworks. If you’re unsure, keep your cat inside once it gets dark just to be safe. Neighbors may set them off unexpected, so it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Purina recommends also shutting all windows and locking cat doors. Loud noises may cause your cat to hide, and they could run for outside unknowingly. If for some reason your cat cannot come inside, be sure that you have the proper identification tags. Microchipping your cat can also come in handy for these reasons, especially if they are mostly an outdoor cat.
Soundproof Your Home As Much As Possible
Now that your cat is safely inside, try to soundproof the home as much as possible. PETA recommends using air conditioners and fans, closing the curtains, and playing the television or radio to drown out noise. The curtains or blinds will also block out any bright colors that could scare the cat.
Extend Playtime to Keep Your Cat Distracted
Another simple way to help your scared cat is to keep them distracted. Extend playtime and help them get out their energy. Veterinarians to Cats recommends interactive toys to help them stay focused on you and the toy. The Purina article above also mentions using catnip or laser pointers if other toys aren’t working. Tiring or calming your cat down can help them to sleep through most of the fireworks.
If you’re not going to be home, consider keeping the television or radio on to drown out the noise. Leave toys out to let them play by themselves, or use automatic toys to keep them entertained.
Make Sure the Cat Has a Safe Hiding Place
As we mentioned, scared cats can cause a great deal of hurt for their owners and themselves. Allow your cat to have a safe getaway and hiding place during fireworks. If you’re having a party, make sure that people know to stay away from the cat. It may panic and bite or scratch others while trying to hide.
Keeping their favorite places clear will help the kitty feel safe. If you’re concerned that the cat may try to hide behind furniture or in tight spaces, block them off early. This will ensure that they stay safe during the fireworks and will feel comfortable in their hiding place. We mentioned this above, but it’s just as important: always close windows and lock any cat doors. If they regularly go outside, that may be the first place they retreat to.
Additional Tips When All Else Fails
You may read this and think, “I’ve tried these things before, and my cat was still scared.” That may be true! Some cats can scare easily, and worse than others. If your cat is still terrified when doing all of the above steps, you may need additional help. Using things like “Thunder Shirts” and supplements may help to calm your scared cat. Always speak with your veterinarian first before giving your cat any type of medication. Your vet may have recommendations that you can buy at their office.
If your cat must take medication, be sure to properly read the dosage amounts to keep them safe. They may already be tense or scared, so approach them calmly and keep an eye on them while on the medication.
Call Veterinarians to Cats for Tips About Fireworks and Cats
Whether you are planning to set off your own fireworks, or know that your cat may hear them, call Veterinarians to Cats. We can offer expert advice and tips on how to keep your cat safe and calm. We offer quality veterinary care for all breeds and all ages of cats in Roanoke, VA. Let us help you and your cat this summer.
Are you looking for a new veterinarian for your cats? Call Veterinarians to Cats in Roanoke, VA, at (540) 989-1400 or follow us on Facebook for updates. Talk to our veterinarians about how to handle fireworks and cats.