Dark night safety for cats
October 14, 2018
When it comes to noise, it all kicks off at this time of year, with Halloween at the end of October and Bonfire Night the first week in November both being excuses for the fireworks to come out.
It’s not just dogs that suffer when it comes to loud noises – cats too are very sensitive and have inherited their ancestors’ instincts, which tell them that loud noises mean danger. In many instance cats will tend to flee, which leads to its own set of possible dangers.
Best Friends Vets’ team of cat experts have put together an infographic which you can download here to help you be more aware of the dangers cats face. In the meantime, here are a few tips to keep your cats safe in the longer, darker nights.
Combatting dark night dangers
With the shorter days and longer nights, it’s best to get your cat indoors early and keep it there, especially if you’re expecting fireworks. Remember to lock the catflap, keep doors and windows closed and draw the curtains/pull down the blinds to shut out any bright flashes and reduce noise.
Our head nurse, Lisa, suggests providing a hiding place where your cat feels safe, maybe tucked behind the sofa or on the bed. If it already has a favourite hiding place, you can make it even better with extra bedding and a few treats.
Try not to react if your cat becomes restless or stressed as this can actually end up reinforcing its behaviour.
When fireworks do start up, try distracting your pet with toys and continue playing throughout. For a longer-term solution, you could try playing a desensitising CD, starting off very low and gradually increasing the volume as your cat becomes accustomed to the sounds.
If this hasn’t answered your questions, hopefully our downloadable infographic will give you some more pointers. If you have any questions about the use of pheromone distributors or possible further interventions for your noise-fearing cat, just contact us and we’ll be happy to speak to you.