Top Tips For Calm Pets This Bonfire Night

If you have pets such as a cat or a dog at home, you’ll know how they can get scared at certain noises, smells and people.  Bonfire night can be a scary time for some animals.  Just like people, some cats and dogs don’t mind fireworks and may even sit looking out of the window watching the displays in the neighbourhood, but for other pets, even the slightest bang can be terrifying.

You can use our top tips for keeping your pets as calm as possible this fireworks season if you have the kind of cat or dog that cowers in fear at the slightest noise.

Protect your Runaway

If you have a cat that goes outdoors, you should make sure that it is microchipped.  There are a lot of vets in the local area that may be able to offer cheap deals on microchipping.  if your pet already has a microchip, you should make sure that the details on the chip are up to date.  Remember to update your mobile phone number for example if you have changed it recently.  If your cat or dog does decide to bolt out of the door, there will be a good chance that your pet will be returned to you quickly if it has an up to date chip.

Make sure that you do your best to keep your pet indoors for a few nights over bonfire night week so that they don’t get scared and run further away from their home than they’d usually venture.  A dog that’s out in a fenced yard may try to get out of the yard or garden if they are scared enough.

Help Your Pet to Hide

When scary banging sounds are going on outside, it may help your pet to feel safe if they have somewhere to go and hide.  Provide somewhere safe for your pet to hide.  If there is the space, you could maybe move your pets food and water bowls to underneath the bed so that they can hide for a while there.  If you’re keeping your cat indoors during firework season, you should make sure that there are enough cat litter trays around your home.  It may be a good idea to have one upstairs and downstairs if you live in a house with 2 storeys for example.

Take an Early Walk

If you would normally walk your dog in the evening, you should change your schedule so that you go for your usual walk earlier.  Try to walk your dog whilst it is still light outside because it is much less likely that anyone in your neighbourhood will be setting off fireworks if it is not dark.

Keep Doors and Windows Closed

Of course, if you are keeping your pet indoors, you need to make sure that they can’t get out.  Keep the windows and doors closed at home.  Not only will this prevent your pets from getting out, but it will also reduce the noises and prevent the smell of bonfire smoke from getting in.  These sounds and smells may cause an unnecessary amount of stress for your pet.

Reduce Anxiety

There are a number of ways that you can help to reduce the amount of anxiety that your pets may be feeling during fireworks season. 

Firstly, you may want to try a calming diffuser.  There are a few on the market for example [amazon_textlink asin=’B0038XBOJC’ text=’Adaptil’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’cubran-21′ marketplace=’UK’ link_id=’6a240292-b779-11e7-b009-5bf58bdc81a1′] or [amazon_textlink asin=’B01ETO3PFE’ text=’Feliway’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’cubran-21′ marketplace=’UK’ link_id=’3d14d278-b779-11e7-9ecc-1b00bc9409a1′] diffuser.

Toys can provide an excellent distraction for your dog or cat when they feel scared.  There are plenty of different toys out there or if you’d rather, you could just use boxes or pieces of string for cats to play with whilst your dog may be distracted with a bone to gnaw on.

You can put the TV or the radio on to mask the sound of the fireworks.  This is an especially good idea if you need to go out and leave your pet home alone. 

Treatment of Scared Pets

You must make sure that you never shout at your pet when it is scared.  It may be tempting for some people to shout at a dog for barking for example, worrying that neighbours may get annoyed.  Punishing a pet for being scared will only distress them further.

On the other hand, you should try not to make too big of a deal when your pet is scared.  A little TLC is fine, but if you go overboard with the reassurance, you may find that you confirm that there is something to fear when they are simply responding to fear.

The best thing to do is to try to act as normally as you can and maintain your usual routine as much as possible.


The best thing to do is to stay home with your pets to make sure that they can feel safe.