Ff you must let off fireworks yourself check out these tips to help local animals…
(Why not share these last two tips with your non-pet-owning friends & colleagues?)
Let your neighbours know in advance
Give some consideration to your immediate neighbours, since they (and their pets) will be most severely affected by the proximity of your firework display. Neighbours with pets will be very grateful of advance warning that you're planning to 'let fly' in your garden between 9:30 and 10pm, as this may enable them to make sure they are home, and that sensible preventative measures are in place to help their pets cope.
Consider knocking on doors at least a few up and down the street, and don't forget your neighbours over the back fence, if you have them; while you may never have met them, they will be just as badly affected by fireworks at the bottom of your garden! You never know, you might make new friends for life. Or if that idea is too frightening, how about dropping a little note through their letterboxes?
If you live in a rural area, as well as immediate human neighbours, please let keepers of nearby horses and livestock know what you're planning so that they can take appropriate precautions for the safety and welfare of their animals.
Consider quieter alternatives - but avoid Chinese lanterns!
'Chinese' or 'sky' lanterns are a fire hazard, a risk to livestock who can ingest the rigid parts of the lanterns while grazing, resulting in potentially fatal internal injuries, they are a danger to aircraft, and can also be confused with distress flares from shipping if used within 30 miles the coast. And notwithstanding any of that, they are a serious litter nuisance. Don't use them.
A little bonfire or brazier is a great fun alternative to fireworks, and avoids the noise and flashes of light that pets can find so frightening. Even better, you can toast marshmallows and roast chestnuts over them! (Always take care with the safety of open fires, and keep these well away from fences, overhanging branches, and other flammable materials - the fire brigade have quite enough on their hands at this time of year!)
Remember that hedgehogs will find a big pile of bonfire material a really tempting place to sleep, so don't leave them lying around - build your fire immediately before lighting it.
Specialist retailers now sell a range of 'silent' fireworks (there are still a few whooshes and pops, but the noise level is greatly less than traditional fireworks) which are used by a number of zoos for their seasonal celebrations. While these can be tricky to get hold of - sadly you won't find them at your local garden centre or DIY barn - they make a great alterative for those who love a firework light show but would like to avoid distressing others.
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What every dog owner needs to know about fireworks and their dog!Every year millions of dogs all over the world are terrified by the sound of fireworks exploding in their midst. Think of all of the dogs that suffer on Bonfire night in the UK, Independence Day in the USA, New Year’s Eve all over the world and the spectacular Hindu Festival, Diwali in India.
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