Vets and animal welfare organisations say that keeping pets indoors while crackers are being burst during Diwali and staying with them will help the animals feel secure.
Ensure your pets are wearing a collar and attach an identification tag with your address and phone number so lost pets can be returned.
Diwali affect pets, families and homeless ones alike. Diwali the festival of light is a five-day Hindu celebration that is held annually globally welcoming light over darkness. This year, Hindus will be observing Diwali on 14 November 2020, this special Hindu festival is not a public holiday in South Africa. The south Indian Deepavali festival is also celebrated on this day in 2020.
Animals have a level of hearing that is much more sensitive than that of humans, which means every firecracker sounds earth-shattering to them.
Often, they panic and try to escape. Several dogs go missing and some owners never succeed in tracking down their much-loved pets.
As for homeless dogs, when firecrackers are lit on the streets, they are traumatised by the smoke and noise and go into hiding, venturing out only after the celebrations are over.
In the process, they lose a chance to search for food and go hungry for several days. Those with newborn litters might lose them to the fireworks when the young ones scamper away.
Dogs instinctively seek out confined spaces when frightened. If your dog hides under the bed or behind a cupboard, don’t drag him out in an attempt to comfort him. Instead, put some clothing or towels with your familiar scent next to him for reassurance. Play soothing music relatively loud to help drown out the fear-producing noise.
Another aspect of the festive season that doctors warn against is unhealthy eating — even by pets. Please do not give pets sweetmeats (confectionary). It does nothing but harm them in the long run.
Last but not the least, remember that good intentions can be fatal – do not administer any medicine to your pet without consulting a veterinarian.