Halloween and bonfire night both present dangers to our feline friends. International Cat Care have released a reminder of the dangers and risks facing cats at this time of year.
Glow sticks are very easy for cats to chew through. These glow sticks contain dibutyl phthalate, which makes cats foam at the mouth with immediate effect. If your cat gets her teeth into a glow stick iCatCare recommend diluting the chemical with a small amount of milk, tuna juice or some tinned cat food. We also recommend that any glow stick liquid is quickly cleaned up if it is spilled.
Cats are not a fan of fireworks. The loud noises are frightening and they cause many cats to panic and flee increasing the risk of a traffic injury or getting lost. You may notice that a nervous cat may increase their grooming during and after fireworks or even have an accident in the house that is out of character.
ICatCare shared the following advice for nights when fireworks are being let off in your neighbourhood and surrounding areas.
- Bring the cat inside before it turns dark outside. Once inside, keep doors and windows closed and block the cat flap. This will help to muffle the noise from the firework and stop your cat from getting out. Don’t forget to get out the cat litter tray!
- Help your cat (and other pets) to get accustomed to the noise by playing firework sounds in the build up to firework season (and New Year’s Eve). YouTube is full of clips that you can use. Play the sounds quietly and gradually increase over time.
- Make the cat a cosy hiding place (or three!) around the home. It should be dark, cosy and comfortable. Your cat might appreciate a quite hidey hole when the fireworks begin.
- Let your cat decide what he wants to do. Don’t try and force him to sit on your lap. If he wants to go into hiding let him. If he wants to sit on your lap then that’s fine too.
- Help distract your cat from the noise by using treats and toys.
- There are many synthetic plug ins that release calming pheromones into the air. These can be useful for calming stressed out kitties.
Further advice is available on the iCatCare website.