Pet Safety Around Firework Season
Firework Season can be incredibly stressful for our pets. A huge concern is your pet being caught unaware whilst outside after dark and then running off or being involved in an accident.
We sadly see and hear of many cases like this each year so we want to remind our clients that is is best to walk your dog before dark or closely supervise them should they need to go outside for toileting after dark.
Consider keeping cats indoors overnight if possible, providing them with litter trays.
Hopefully your pet is already microchipped. If not, our nurses offer microchipping clinics available most days. Please check your details are correct on the microchip database. Too often we have stray pets brought in that have a microchip but we are unable or struggle to trace the owners because the microchip details are incorrect. Please ask a member of our team if you need advice on how to do this or go to https://www.petlog.org.uk/
Our top tips to help your pets stay calm and safe:
- Walk dogs before dark. Keep the walk calm because increased adrenaline (i.e. from ball throwing) can remain in their system for many hours, potentially making them more reactive to fireworks.
- Provide safe hiding places, cats like to be high up or in small, dark areas. Dogs may like a covered crate or dining table, try draping a large duvet over a table and provide bedding underneath.
- Some dogs will crave attention, others may want to hide and be on their own. We recommend owners try to stick to their normal evening routine and provide extra comfort if the dog wants it or leave them be if they want to be alone. Try to avoid becoming anxious yourself or overly fussing the dog as they may take this as reason to worry more. Keeping a calm atmosphere is ideal.
- Make sure windows and doors are closed to prevent any escaping, Curtains and blinds closed to block any flashing lights and consider turning the tv up louder or playing classical music to block some sound.
- There are many different medications and calming products on the market. Please pop in or give us a ring to discuss in more depth which ones may be suitable for your pet.
- These websites may be useful, we stock these products:
Autumn Fruits – Conkers in Dogs
Conkers are the seeds of the horse chestnut tree (Aesculus hippocastanum) which grows widely in the UK and Europe.
Most dogs show no symptoms after conker ingestion or may develop mild gastrointestinal signs only. Serious cases of poisoning are uncommon but if you have any concerns please come and see us.
Caring For Your Senior Dog In The Colder Months
Help your dog maintain good body condition and remain comfortable and mobile this winter by following our top tips:
- Ensure they are warm and dry. Consider using a coat when walking to keep their joints warm and their body dry. Ensure they are dried off fully after a walk if you do get caught in the rain.
- Exercising little and often is preferable to one long walk a day. Their joints and muscles will benefit from regular, manageable bouts of exercise as well as stimulating their senses and brain.
- Consider giving your dog a nice warm up massage before their walk, particularly on chilly mornings. It doesn’t have to be anything too technical just nice gentle stroking down each shoulder and foreleg, along their back and down each hind leg will help warm those muscles up and boost their circulation so they are ready to enjoy their walk and may prevent certain injuries.
- Provide and encourage your dog to use nice thick, comfy bedding. Some dogs are fussy and may not like the really expensive designer dog bed you bought them last Christmas and would prefer to sleep on the kitchen tiles but keep persevering, as they get older their joints will appreciate some padding.
- Avoid slippery floors, particularly when they become wet. Is it possible to use runners or rugs on the most commonly used areas? Older dogs may struggle to get up or balance well on slippery floors increasing their risk of injury and can make them frightened of going in certain rooms if they don’t like the flooring.
- Monitor their weight regularly. As well as putting them on the scales in our Veterinary Practice it is also useful to regularly check their body condition at home. You can do this by running your hands across their ribs; can you feel them easily or are they covered with a thick layer of fat? When you look down at your dog, can you see their waist, it should be slightly tucked in behind the rib cage? Do you think they are gaining or losing weight? Has their appetite changed recently? Please arrange an appointment if you are concerned.
Please bring your pet in to see us if they seem to be slowing down, struggling to get up, or they’ve lost their normal ‘spark’. It shouldn’t be thought of as normal just because they are old.
We want our Golden Oldies to be as comfortable as possible for the rest of their days and we can help achieve this in many ways such as tailored exercise plans, massage and/or physiotherapy techniques, acupuncture, hydrotherapy, laser therapy, supplements, prescriptions medications and even surgery.