Children

Four-legged and frightened

Deepavali isn’t the greatest time of the year for our pets. The loud noises of fireworks can make them anxious, uneasy and frightened. Dogs and cats have a hearing ability that is much stronger than ours. This means that loud sounds tend to be unbearable and torturous for them.

What you can do

Before the celebrations begin, make sure your pet is well fed and hydrated. If its tummy is full, it might be less anxious later. When the noise begins, keep it in a room and close the doors and windows to shut out the noise as much as possible.

Anxious pets may also find ways to escape from the place without realising the dangers on the streets, so keep them confined to a room. As a precaution, make your pet wears a tag with your contact number on it, so that people can reach out to you in case it runs away in panic.

If your pet cooperates, cover its ears with earmuffs or soft cloth. This might help reduce the impact of the noise. You could also try masking the noise by turning up the TV volume or playing some music.

If you feel you can cheer them up by giving a favourite treat to eat, don’t hold back. Keep some of its favourite toys around as a distraction. If your pet tries to retreat to a corner or hide under a bed or other furniture, don’t force it to come out. Take turns with your family members to give your pet company so that it doesn’t feel lonely and abandoned.

Keep all your fireworks and lamps out of its reach. If you are bursting crackers at home, clean up properly after you are done. Crackers contain chemicals and your pet might stamp on burnt crackers that are still hot or lick or sniff the debris by mistake.

This might be the time you binge on sweets and treats but make sure your pet doesn’t eat anything that may not agree with it.

While you care for your beloved pets, spare a thought for stray animals too. Give them shelter if possible. Remind grown-ups around you to check under their cars before starting them, because scared stray animals tend to hide under cars.

Consider having a cracker-free Diwali for the sake of our animal companions. Think about whether the festival of lights needs to necessarily be a festival of noise as well.


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Printable version | Nov 27, 2021 11:31:01 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/children/four-legged-and-frightened/article37184389.ece

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