The Scottish SSPCA have put out warnings for pet lovers ahead of bonfire night after research which indicates that nearly all vets (90%) support their campaign for tighter controls over the sale of fireworks.
The survey results come from veterinary practices across Scotland, also revealed that vets dealt with over 2,500 fireworks related queries last year with 1,334 animals requiring treatment for fireworks related fear including 859 pets undergoing sedation.
The Scottish SPCA are calling for fireworks sales to be restricted to the week preceding 5 November and then not at all afterwards, with the current rules regarding New Year’s Eve, Chinese New Year and Diwali to stay the same.
Scottish SPCA Chief Superintendent, Mike Flynn, said: “Current regulations are so relaxed that fireworks can be set off on any given day and for weeks and months on end rather than being limited to the major festival periods.
“It’s not surprising that vets are supportive of our calls for tighter restrictions given the sheer volume of animals they are treating for fireworks related fear.”
Some advice for pet owners include that animals should be kept indoors after dark. Curtains should be closed and a distraction can be made by putting on the televisions or radio.
If fireworks are likely to be set off nearby, livestock and horses should be moved into a barn or stable in the evening.
For those holding fireworks displays and bonfires, it is encouraged that they should warn neighbours in advance allowing them to make necessary arrangements for their pets.
In rural settings people need to be mindful of livestock or horses because firework noises can lead to animals bolting which can result in serious injury. Lastly, bonfires should be checked before they are lit for any hibernating animals.