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HomekarnatakaHow to make the festive season stress-free for pets

How to make the festive season stress-free for pets

Deepavali can be a trying time for animals, with loud fireworks going off across the city. Pet parents and animal shelter representatives share insights on how to keep them calm.

Yasmine Claire, a member of the Ulsoor Canine Squad, owns eight dogs and 10 cats. The season is a challenging period but taking a few precautionary steps can help, she says. “We ensure that they have a separate room with lights off and some comfortable beds laid out,” she adds. Her dogs and cats are not allowed to wander outside the house alone, even on their terrace garden during Deepavali. Using earmuffs, or wrapping towels and dupattas around pets’ ears, can help cut the noise, she advises.

Playing instrumental or soothing music at home often helps calm pets, says Ajay Arjun, head of projects and resources with Compassion Unlimited Plus Action, an NGO that provides rescue and relief to sick, injured, and abused animals.Ajay owns two cats. “Cats are sensitive to loud sounds, so keeping them indoors is a must,” he suggests. “If they get stressed and are outside, they could run away and get lost when seeking a hiding space,” he adds.

Kalyan Nagar resident Sachin doesn’t leash his American Bully Simba, during the festive season. “We also let him sleep in our room. With the doors closed, the sound isn’t as prominent,” he adds.

Early morning or early evening walks are best for the season. Make sure your pet doesn’t lick or sniff burst cracker residue on the roads, Sachin adds.

‘Mind calming practices important’

Sudha Narayanan, founder of Charlie’s Animal Rescue Centre, an animal protection organisation, says it is ideal to do two small walks rather than a long walk. This way, you can head back home immediately, if fireworks start going off in the middle of your walk. “Focus on keeping your pet’s mind calm. One can use medications to calm them down after consulting with a veterinarian,” she shares.Force-feeding them is not a good idea. It could agitate them further. “If they are completely off food for more than two days, visit the vet to understand if stress has triggered any other health issues,” she adds. She suggests creating comfortable hiding spaces for smaller animals like rabbits and guinea pigs.

(Published 09 November 2023, 23:05 IST)

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