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OPINION: Spare a thought for dog and cat owners when letting off fireworks

PUBLISHED: 13:39 05 November 2020 | UPDATED: 13:39 05 November 2020

Pets hate fireworks, says Kahn Johnson, so spare a thought for them when letting off fireworks tonight

Pets hate fireworks, says Kahn Johnson, so spare a thought for them when letting off fireworks tonight

Archant

Fireworks and pets don’t mix, so spare a thought for animals tonight, says our columnist

Ah, yes, it’s that most wonderful time of the year. The tricks have all been treated, the pumpkins are composting and we turn our attentions to the next step in the endless trudge of autumnal frippery.

Bonfire night.

Or fireworks night.

Or, if you have a nervous pooch or moggy - hell.

Because for some, November 5th is wonderful. Fires, sparklers, things going woosh and bang and skies aflame with what other parts of the world would call an attack.

But others - and I am among this collective - spend the night (and the two weeks before and three weeks after) trying to reassure a very petrified pet that all is actually well, the world isn’t really ending and it’s just some humans who think explosions are fun.

It’s less fun, I’ll be honest, if you’re at home watching a dog become a shivering wreck and hiding under the dining table (once I’ve put tablecloths all around to create a fort).

And before the internet vets of the world descend, yup, tried that. Done that as well. That? Years ago...

You see, the problem is people. It’s always people.

Organised displays? On specified days? That we all know about and can prepare for? Make plans around so we don’t do something stupid like think we can just pop to the shop only to find three neighbours have found some spare pyro in the back of the shed on a random Tuesday?

That would be great. You guys get to go ooh and ahhh, my dog only has one night of abject terror.

But when people just start letting them off with no warning? Could you not maybe just think for a second?

And it’s not just dog owners. Newborns aren’t fully au fait with the finer points of our traditions and can have trouble sleeping through an air raid - which can be doubly stressful for the new parents.

I do understand the appeal of just making noise for no reason. I like heavy metal band Sepultura as much as the next man. It’s just that watching a dog quake in fear and terror, knowing there’s nothing I can do to take her suffering away (CBD drops? Yeah, tried them...), is heartbreaking.

And no, you probably don’t care. But then I don’t care that you thought spending £100 for 10 minutes of fun was a good idea.

There are better ways to do that, seriously.

But maybe we could find some common ground here, eh?

You be a bit more thoughtful and tell your neighbours when you’re planning on setting off a series of explosions, and I’ll keep the Sepultura to a minimum.


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