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Follow these easy tips and make Diwali a pet-friendly festival

Firecrackers are not only environmentally harmful but it is also stressful for the animals around us.

By: Lifestyle Desk | New Delhi |
October 24, 2019 1:00:08 pm
diwali 2019, pet-friendly diwali, indianexpress.com, indianexpress, firecrackers, noise pollution, sound pollution, dogs, cats, pets scraed, veterinarian, emergency numbers, deepavali 2019, deepavali, Keep your pets indoors and in a familiar room. (Photo: Getty Images/Thinkstock)

With Diwali being just a few days away, it is not only time to think about environment but also about animals and celebrate the ‘festival of lights’ in an animal-friendly way. Firecrackers are not only harmful for the environment, but are also stressful for the animals around us. Every year, animal shelters witness a tremendous increase in the number of runaway and lost pets; who are scared, anxious, nervous and often burnt.

According to Humane Society International/India’s managing director Alokparna Sengupta, “The noise from fireworks causes great amount of fear, stress and anxiety in animals. However, let’s try to make this Diwali less scary and traumatic for animals by saying no to crackers.”

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Take precautions by following these simple tips:

1. Keep your pets indoors and in a familiar room. Pets have a heightened sense of hearing so the jolts and loud noises cause many animals to flee in search of safe haven. Switch on calming music or television if possible.

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2. Keep all doors and windows closed and draw the curtains to reduce the noise. Supply pets with enough food and water and ensure someone can stay with them to comfort them.

3. Store fireworks safely in a closed box, somewhere cool and dry, and out of reach of pets. Do not keep firework containers under stairs or exposed in passages.

4. Decorate with lights, lamps and diyas that are friendlier to the environment and animals by giving off less smoke and noise.

5. Refrain from bursting crackers near an animal shelter or zoo. Noise can cause panic and fear. Pollution from burning firecrackers is also harmful to their health.

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6. Take dogs for a walk during the daytime before the celebrations begin. Never walk them near where others are lighting firecrackers.

7. Consult a veterinarian if your pets are prone to acute anxiety or distress from loud noises and medicate with anti-anxiety or calmant, if necessary (only on vet prescription). Check their availability during Diwali in case of emergency.

8. Ensure pets are wearing collars and identification tags with current contact information. All pets, even those kept indoors, should wear collars with identification tags at all times.

9. If you feed street animals around your neighbourhood, make sure that they are wearing tags labelled with their names and your phone numbers.

 

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10. Provide them shelter in an area where they may be safe from the firecrackers and the noise.

11. Make a first-aid kit in preparation for helping injured animals. Have a bucket full of water handy for emergency and for putting used sparklers into.

12. Keep contact information for local municipal corporations and surrounding shelters handy and approach them immediately in case of lost pets. If you find a lost pet, either take her to the address on the tag or a local animal shelter.

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