Number of missing dogs doubles during fireworks season, Kennel Club says

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During fireworks, many dogs become upset and scared, with owners frequently reporting common signs of stress, such as pacing (19%), howling and crying (19%), excessively panting (16%) or lick, chew, or drool (12 percent). Photo courtesy of The Kennel Club

Research from the Dog Protection Organization shows that nearly eight in ten owners (79 percent) in Yorkshire and the Humber notice significant changes in their dog’s behavior during fireworks, with a third (33 percent) of owners in Yorkshire and Humber saying their dog shivers and shakes and almost a third (31%) mention unusual excessive barking. More than a third (37%) say their dog gets very sticky, while a fifth (21%) feel the opposite, with dogs hiding under various surfaces and avoiding contact.

During fireworks, many dogs become upset and frightened, with owners frequently reporting common signs of stress, such as pacing (19%), howling and crying (19%), excessively panting (16%) or lick, chew, or drool (12 percent).

And it’s not just about changes in behavior, as more than three-quarters of Yorkshire and Humber owners (77%) notice changes in their dog’s mood:

Almost a quarter (24%) of homeowners think their furry friend is terrified of fireworks

Three in five owners (60%) notice their dog is scared

And nearly a third (34%) say fireworks make their dog anxious

Bonfire night and Diwali celebrations, both of which can be accompanied by bright and loud fireworks, can negatively impact the mood and behavior of thousands of dogs, but they are also a source stress for owners. Two-thirds (66%) of Yorkshire and Humber owners are more concerned about their dog’s welfare during fireworks season than at any other time of year, and one-tenth (10% ) of owners also say their dog had tried – or succeeded – to escape during a fireworks display, which can have tragic consequences. Data from Petlog, the UK’s largest microchip database, shows the number of missing dogs doubles during the week of the fireworks celebrations.

Melanie from Berkshire, lost her Labradoodle noodles when fireworks broke out in the nearby village in 2019.

“The noodles were in the garden when fireworks, which we didn’t know and expected, went off in the nearby village and he got scared and fled,” Melanie said.

“We searched the area for days and despite help from neighbors and friends, social media and various organizations, he was never found.

“The horrible feeling when your pet goes missing is heartbreaking, he was part of our family and he brought so much joy and laughter to our whole family. Not knowing what happened to him makes it even more difficult.

“I urge anyone planning to host a fireworks display to at least let their neighbors know so they can prepare, and that owners make sure their dogs and other pets are safe in advance,” keeping in mind that sounds travel quite a distance. When they happen without warning, it’s impossible to prepare and they can have devastating consequences, as in the case of Noodles.

Mark Beazley, Managing Director of The Kennel Club, said: “Fireworks, especially if they are unexpected, can have devastating and long-term effects, with dozens of dogs missing each year and thousands more. showing obvious signs of fear and distress.

“This new research shows the many negative impacts of fireworks on the well-being and behavior of dogs, with dogs shaking, hiding and crying, and leaving their owners rightly concerned for well-being and safety.” of their four-legged friend.

“Every dog ​​reacts differently and it is important that dog owners, especially those with young puppies, know what to do and how they can help their dogs get through fireworks season safely, and that those who participate in exhibitions are considerate of the nation’s pets. . “

To help dogs get through fireworks season as safely and comfortably as possible, The Kennel Club has put together some tips for owners:

Get them used to the sounds of fireworks by playing them fireworks sounds in the weeks leading up to night

Close all doors and windows and keep your curtains closed to block flashing lights

Create a safe space for your dog filled with his favorite toys and blankets. You can cover with a thick duvet to make it more soundproof, but make sure it is secure and cannot fall on your dog.

Distract your dog by keeping the TV or radio on

○ Reward their calm behavior with treats or by playing

Keep your dog’s microchip details up to date to make it easier for you to find your dog in case they run away

Try to act and behave normally, as your dog will detect any unusual behavior. Keep calm, happy, and cheerful as this will send positive signals to your dog.

For more information and tips on how to make sure dogs are safe and comfortable during fireworks season, visit the Kennel Club website: thekennelclub.org.uk/fireworks


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