Posted By: Nat - Vet Nurse

Navigating Autumn's Challenges: Pet Safety Tips from Shepton Vets

As autumn arrives, so do unique challenges for our furry friends. At Shepton Vets, we understand the anxieties that this season can bring, from fireworks to festive treats. Our dedicated team is here year-round to offer support and advice to ensure your pets stay safe and happy. With darker evenings and potential stressors, we're ready to provide extra guidance and tips to protect your beloved companions.

Just like that we are in the autumn months! This time of year can bring some anxiety to households with firework displays, cold, dark evenings and with lots of festive treats hanging around the house. We Vets and Nurses are here all year round to give advice to our clients and their pets, and with the night's drawing in, we like to make sure we give some extra support with plenty of hints and tips to keep our pets safe and owners happy.

If your pet struggles with loud noises during the firework season it is best to get to their safe space already a couple of weeks before it all begins so that they are familiar with it, and it is always available. Animals feel more secure in small spaces. Creating a ‘den’ or covered area may help muffle the noise, as does closing curtains and keeping the television or radio on. Cats prefer their dens to be up high and covered in blankets. There are several calming supplements, pheromone treatments and other complementary products that are often helpful too. Please contact the veterinary practice if you wish to talk to a member of our team regarding what we can offer. Please make sure your pet is microchipped and that all the details and contact information associated with it are up to date just in case your pet were to run from home out of fear. By law, all dogs over six weeks of age should also wear a collar with an identification tag. Locking cat flaps and keeping your pets inside overnight should also reduce the chances of them going missing.

Small furries such as guinea pigs and rabbits that are normally accommodated outside should either be brought indoors, or their hutches should be covered with blankets to help soundproof their house. If you have a garage, you could consider moving them into it from the garden as this may also provide a less noisy and less stressful environment. It is also important not to forget to keep your small furries warm by adding some insulation to hutches and runs, such as tarpaulin and blankets to help keep cold and high winds at bay. Boxes filled with straw will help and wrapping water bottles in bubble wrap will reduce the chances of their drinking water freezing.

Pets can also be tempted by sweet treats and as most of you will know, chocolate is normally at the top of the toxicity list. It takes a lot to put a veterinary team off food, but chocolate vomit certainly does just that! Avoiding temptation by keeping these toxic treats up high and in extra safe containers will hopefully resist the temptation from our four-legged friends. Even healthier treats that contain raisins or sultanas and nutty treats are also very harmful so please also bear this in mind. If you are concerned that your pet has ingested something toxic, please call the practice immediately and we will be able to help.

Halloween’s spooky season is nearly upon us, and for curious pets placing a paw into a pumpkin filled with candles or pulling on a decorative item could cause harm. We have even known some to sample decorations and cause themselves an intestinal blockage.

So, after all that scare mongering, the final message is to ensure lots of fun and celebration is to be had. At Shepton and Wells Vets we love a pet fancy dress photo, so with their consent, please share any photographs with us!

- Nurse Nat

Let's embrace the spirit of the season while keeping our pets' well-being a top priority. If your pet faces firework phobia, we're here to help with strategies for their comfort. Remember, microchipping, identification tags, and secure environments are essential. For those sweet treats and Halloween hijinks, vigilance is key. Share your pet's festive moments with us because at Shepton and Wells Vets, we celebrate with you!

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Shepton Veterinary Group Limited
Allyn Saxon Drive
Shepton Mallet BA4 5QH

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