Are Cats Scared of Fireworks? Tips to Keep your Kitty Calm
Bonfire Night can be a noisy and unwelcome celebration for cats. While fireworks may be fun for humans, they can make our feline friends anxious and scared. The bright lights and loud, sudden noises can frighten cats and even the most confident of kitties might feel stressed and react in a number of different ways.
If you’re a cat owner, we’re sure that you’ve witnessed how lightning-fast their reflexes are whenever they hear a loud noise. Cats have hyper-sensitive hearing, so the sudden loud bangs and crackles of fireworks combined with flashes of bright lights can cause them to bolt in any direction to seek safety. Even if your feline usually acts like a cool cat, fireworks may make them feel anxious.
How to tell if your cat is stressed due to fireworks
While dogs are more likely to show clear signs of stress due to fireworks, our feline friends can be a little harder to read, especially if they purposely try to hide the fact that they’re scared.
Signs that your cat is scared include:
Having dilated pupils
Making a hissing or low grumbling noise
Making slow movements
Being more withdrawn from you
Likely to arch their back and crouch
7 tips to keep your cat safe and calm on Bonfire Night
1. Keep your cat indoors after dark
If you do one thing to help your cat on Bonfire Night, then it’s to keep them inside at night. Even if you’re not having your own firework display, chances are that other people in your area will be, so it’s best to keep your kitty inside so they’re not startled.
Just make sure that they’ve got access to the following:
· A litter tray
· A play to hide (like a cardboard box!)
· Their favourite toys to keep them busy
2. Make sure your cat can’t sneak out
To help keep your cat inside on Bonfire Night, it’s important to seal off the exits – close doors and windows and block off their cat flap. Remember, cats can squeeze into surprisingly small spaces, so also be sure to block off any areas that may be unsafe.
3. Turn the TV or radio up
Background noise is a great way to reduce the loud, sudden sounds of fireworks. Classical music has been known to be particularly soothing for cats – so why not put on some Meowzart?
4. Create a safe hiding place for your cat
Does your cat like to hide in a particular place? Even if it’s just their favourite cardboard box, make sure that they have access to this area. You can even make it cosier by lining it with a blanket and encouraging them to use it with toys and treats.
5. Close the curtains
Closing the curtains will help to reduce outside noise. Plus, it’ll help to create a cosy atmosphere - put on a film, grab some snacks and your favourite blanket for a chilled night in.
6. Keep calm and don’t fuss over your cat too much
The more relaxed you are, the more relaxed your cat will tend to be. If you carry on as you normally do, this will help to make your cat feel safe and content.
Also, try not to fuss over them too much, if your cat doesn’t want attention, don’t pick them up or cuddle them. Instead, be guided by their behaviour – if your cat seeks your affection then it’s fine to give them attention.
7. Make sure your cat is microchipped
When cats are scared, they’re likely to scarper. If your cat is startled and runs out of the house, or if they’re outside exploring on Bonfire Night, then it’s important that their microchip is up to date and that they have an engraved tag on their collar.
What if my cat is still anxious from the fireworks?
If your cat is still really stressed about fireworks or you’re concerned about their health, it’s best to speak to your vet for more advice. They may refer you to a qualified behaviour therapist or offer alternative advice.
We hope you have a sparkling (and safe) Bonfire Night
We hope that these tips help you feel more confident knowing how to keep cats calm on Bonfire Night. Always try to remain cool and calm around your kitty to make them feel comfortable. And, as always, if you’re ever concerned about your cat’s health then please contact your vet for advice.
If you’re part of a multi-pet household, then make sure to check out our blog post on how to keep dogs calm on Bonfire Night too.
Cat gifts at Yappy
If you’ve got a cute kitty at home then why not treat them with some cat gifts from Yappy?
Keep them happy throughout the day with a range of treats stored away in personalised treat tins and why not get a comfortable cushion for them to nap on? They’ll be “feline” very loving towards you with all these thoughtful gifts!