While New Year’s Eve celebrations are fun for us humans, our furry companions can easily become scared during the festivities. Many pets become scared at the sound of fireworks or noisy music, and you can risk your pet trying to run away – in fact many shelters see a greater number of lost dogs following the holidays. During the holidays there tends to be a lot of foot traffic in and out of your home, potentially creating opportunities for your cat or dog to go on a solo adventure. Make sure that your pet’s tags are up-to-date and we recommend microchipping pets as well. Microchips are a form of identification that can’t get lost. A wandering pet is a worst-case scenario, but you do not want to risk them being lost without identification.
Follow these tips for a safe and fun New Year’s Eve for you and your pets:
- Exercise pets during the day – for dogs, take them on a long walk or run. For cats, play with them for up to a half-hour or more. If they are tired, pets are more likely to nap or rest through the festivities.
- Keep dogs and cats indoors – if you must let the dog out for a bathroom break, monitor them closely by keeping them on a leash. Make sure the collar is fitted and there is no chance of escape if they become frightened by the sounds of fireworks. It is best to not let your cats out at all.
- Keep dogs and cats in a familiar, cozy area (bedroom, for example) with food, water, toys, and bedding. Try playing soothing music in the room to drown out the sound of fireworks. Studies show that classical music works best to keep them calm. If you have both dogs and cats, you may want to separate them in different rooms.
- Make sure if your pets interact with party guests that everyone knows not to feed your pets food or alcohol. This may seem self-explanatory, but some people may not be aware of the dangers of such behavior.
All of us wish you and your pets a very happy and safe new year!