By Diana Waldhuber
As we mentioned earlier, a lot of dogs are scared of fireworks and often need much calming and help in surviving the whole ordeal with their dignity intact.
But it’s not only dogs that get stressed. Cats, too, are often quite twitchy when it comes to sudden, loud noises. My cat takes of in fright (after a quick, manly growl to let everyone know who’s boss) and hides whenever the doorbell rings. Even though you’re probably not going to take your cat out with you, kitty will probably react skittishly and scared when the fireworks go off.
If you’re not going to be home, we recommend making a little ‘comfort zone’ in your cat’s favourite hidey-hole. A shirt or sheet that smells like you over a pillow, or even a little nest of a sheet and blanket is good. Keep the area dark and safe. Cats like dark, tight spaces, which make them feel safe and sound.
Read on for more of our Pet 101 4th of July Survival Tip.
- Water, Water Everywhere – with any and all pets, make sure there’s lots of fresh water available. A lot of us head out for the day and leave our pets behind (often a good idea for the very skittish ones). Of course, if you take your dog, make sure it’s somewhere with shade, or bring your own in the form of a cabana or an umbrella…and plenty of fresh water.
- It’s Party Time! – if you’re having a party, that often means people in and out of your place, doors open, strange people and kids running about, and animals who are baffled and frightened by all this. While you must always watch doors with both dogs and cats (we suggest those child-proof gates for dogs), this is one time to think about cats. Most cats , while social, don’t like to mingle with the riff-raff, and big change is upsetting to them. A great way to keep the status quo and kitty feeling good is to put her in a room she knows, with water, food, her favourite toys, a nice place to hide that’s comfy and a makeshift litterbox. Everyone will be happier in the long run.
- Booze – cats aren’t big boozers, but give a dog a chance and he’ll happily lap up some beer…or even vodka. Keep such things out of reach, and make sure guests know it’s not okay to give your pup a brewski.
- The Long Weekend – If you’re actually going away, chances are you’re taking your pooch with you. While we all know it’s usually fine to leave a cat alone with some food for a day or two, we’re saying…don’t. The weather is hot – it’s July. And many cats now eat wet food, and you can’t leave that out for long periods of time. Getting a friend, neighbour or pet sitter in is a small price to pay for a healthy, happy cat and your peace of mind. This way , kitty will have company, and fresh water and food. Hot weather is definitely a time to make sure there’s plenty of water – it can evaporate faster than you think.
Basically, use some common sense when it comes to your pets and the 4th of July celebrations. As mentioned in our previous post, dogs on leashes and kept away from the fireworks is a must, as is a calm demeanour.
Keeping these things in mind you’ll find you and your pet will have a happy and safe 4th of July!