You humans really seem to enjoy the Fourth of July. Many of you get a day off work. You get to go to picnics and barbecues with great food. You get to watch noisy but pretty fireworks.
But here’s the deal for us cats. To lots of us, those fireworks aren’t so pretty. They’re just noisy and they scare us. Add to that the fact that all too often we’re alone. Maybe our people are off at a party or social function or whatever. The point is they are not with us to provide comfort and assure us that we’re safe.
Did you know that, according to Pet Amber Alert, “animal control officials across the country see a 30-60% increase in lost pets each year between July 4th and 6th. In fact, July 5th is one of the busiest days of the year for shelters.”
Do you want to help make the 4th of July easier for your cat? Here are some tips that your cat would like you to know:
- We’d rather be indoors than outdoors . We’re safer inside, especially on a holiday like the 4th of July. That applies to the days before and after the holiday as well as many people begin celebrating early and continue celebrating past the actual holiday.
- We would prefer to have you home with us. We feel safer when our people are with us.
- If you close your windows and drapes, we won’t be able to see or hear the fireworks quite so much. We’re also much less likely to be able to break free of our safe home and run away if windows and doors are secured.
- We would rather listen to background noise than the crackle and pop from those fireworks. You can leave a television running for us. Or leave a radio playing. Classical music might be a good choice to help keep us calm.
- If you are planning on having a 4th of July party at your home, the hubbub may be a bit too much for us. Please make sure we have a private place where we can retreat and not be harassed by well-meaning party-goers. Many of us would rather be confined in a room to ourselves rather than having to face lots of strangers in our homes.
- Be sure if you have guests in your home for the holiday that we can’t sneak out an open door. Remember that having strange people coming in and out of our home might be upsetting for us. We might decide that running away is better than staying put. We’ll change our mind later on about that but that might be too late. Again, confining us to a room by ourselves might be a better idea than risking our escape.
- Be careful what you and your guests try to feed us. Some of the foods you’re eating for the holiday might not be good for us. Although we cats don’t tend to be food hounds like dogs do, some of will still be curious enough to eat things we shouldn’t.
- Glow sticks and glow jewelry might be tempting for us to play with and chew on. Our veterinarians tell us these things aren’t all that dangerous for us as far as being poisonous but they can cause a really bad taste in our mouths. If we chew into them, we might start drooling and might scare our owners. Keep these things away from us.
- For those of us who are severely frightened by the fireworks and festivities, there are other options to help keep us calm. Products like Feliway can help. If something stronger is needed, your veterinarian can help you find the right solution for us. Your veterinarian is always the best source of advice for any issues facing us cats.
Have a happy 4th of July.