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How to help your cat during the New Year and fireworks

Cats do not express their fear in the same way as dogs, which leads many to believe that the cat is not afraid. It is more difficult to understand that a cat is afraid of fireworks, so here are some common signs that a cat is afraid.

How your cat shows it is afraid of fireworks

  • The cat's ears are flat against its head

  • The cat wants to run away

  • Eyes are wide open

  • The cat may tuck its tail under its body or flick it vigorously from side to side

  • Outdoor cats do not want to go outside

  • Shaking

  • Sneaking around, walking along walls

  • Behavioural change, fear and aggression signals

  • Urine and faeces marks outside the box

  • Reduced or no appetite

How to make your home safe for your cat

On New Year's Eve and other times when fireworks are expected to be set off in your area, make sure to "fireworks proof" your home. If you have an outdoor cat, keep your cat indoors on New Year's Eve to reduce the risk of your cat running away if it gets scared. Even if your cat hasn't shown signs of being afraid of fireworks in the past, it's a good idea to "fireworks proof your home". Do this:

  • Make sure all windows and any cat flaps are closed, when cats get scared they tend to run away and hide.

  • Reduce outside noise as much as possible by closing curtains and turning on the TV or listening to music.

  • Be calm yourself and keep the cat company.

Pheromones and anti-anxiety medication

If you have a cat who is frightened and stressed over the New Year weekend, you may want to seek the help of Feliway. It is a pheromone solution that can reduce stress in cats, it can help your cat feel calm and safe despite the fireworks outside.

If you know your cat is very anxious around the New Year, it may be a good idea to see a vet for further help with medication. Anti-anxiety medication can help your cat get through the New Year in a better way, but always talk to your vet first to know what will be best for your cat.

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