Planned PEThood Blog

Keep Your Pets Safe This New Year’s Eve

New Year’s Eve can be such a fun time for us but can be a frightening and overwhelming experience for our furry family members.

The loud noises from fireworks can cause stress to our pets and result in unwanted situations. Frightened, panicked pets tend to bolt and run far away from whatever spooked them, leading to lots of lost pets. This is an extremely busy time of the year for animal shelters and rescues across the country as more pets panic over fireworks and end up lost. The only other day on which more pets go missing is the Fourth of July.

Here are a few simple tips for a stress-free, safe day for both you and your pets:

Microchip and ID Your Pets. Proper identification may be the only way to help reunite with your pets should they become lost. Having an up-to-date microchip and collar with an ID tag can make a huge difference. Tags are available at most pet stores and even many Walmart locations. Planned PEThood offers microchips for only $25 and that includes registration. All other veterinary clinics offer this service as well, ranging from $24-$75

Work Them Out Before the Festivities Begin. Take your dog for a long walk or a run several hours before the festivities begin. Indoor playtime exercise is great for cats. Giving your pets lots of exercise during the day can help so they’ll be worn out once the fireworks start. A tired pet is a calmer pet and can help with stress and anxiety levels.

Keep Them Indoors. Loud sounds can scare your pets, causing them to bolt. Put them in an indoor, cozy spot well before the fireworks start. If possible, stay home with your pets. When home alone, pets are more likely to panic. Having someone can comforting for your pet.

Provide a Safe, Quiet Place. Help your pet feel safer in a quiet room to crate that is escape-proof. Try blocking out the light from outside.

Provide Distractions. Focus their attention on things such as toys or treats to encourage their minds to focus on that, rather than the noises outside. Use TV or music to mask the sounds outside. Consider a Kong toy stuffed with peanut butter or a cat nip toy.

Ask a Veterinarian for Help. Some pets are more terrified of fireworks than others. There are medications and techniques that might help with your pet’s fear and anxiety. If your pet’s anxiety is severe, it might be helpful to book an appointment with your vet well in advance of the holiday to discuss how to best help your fur baby.

Do your pets a favor and make sure they are well-protected and safe for the holidays so they’re with you for many years to come!