Protect your pets during festive season – SPCA

2016-10-25 10:16
(Picture: SPCA)

(Picture: SPCA)

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Durban – With the festive season around the corner, KwaZulu-Natal’s Kloof and Highway SPCA has pleaded with pet owners to take the necessary steps to protect their animals.

"The loud bangs which very often accompany fireworks cause animals great distress, fear and suffering as their hearing is far more acute than ours.

"Some animals cause injury to themselves by jumping through glass windows, over spiked fences or by running into traffic, as examples. More family pets will run away from home during holidays involving fireworks than any other days of the year," said spokesperson Lisa Storck.

The Hindu community celebrates Diwali on Sunday, October 30, and New Year’s Eve is celebrated on December 31. Fireworks are set off on both occasions.

Here are a few precautionary measures that can be taken when fireworks are set off:

  •     Make sure your animals have identification tags or microchips to ensure that they are returned safely when they are found;
  •     If possible, stay at home with your animals;
  •     If you can't be at home with your animals, keep them inside and make sure that they have access to a safe place;
  •     Ensure that they cannot escape or break through a window or slip out of a door;
  •     Mask noise by drawing curtains and playing calming soothing music at a reasonable volume;
  •     Put familiar and comforting things around them, such as toys and baskets;
  •     Provide them with something to do and keep them occupied, such as giving your dog a toy or giving your cat lots of catnip or a catnip toy;
  •     If your pets do react badly to fireworks, then seek professional advice from your veterinarian ahead of time;
  •     Ensure your pets have a hearty and nutritious meal around nightfall. This will make them more likely to be sleepy.

Storck said animals that were sensitive to thunderstorms would most likely also react badly to fireworks.

"The SPCA does not enforce the laws relating to the use of fireworks. The Explosives Act is enforced by the SAPS, to whom matters of concern need to be reported.

"This Act covers sale of fireworks, as well as issues relating to the discharge of fireworks in public places. Local by-laws regulate the discharge of fireworks on private property."

She appealed with community members to be considerate to animals.  

Storck said the Animals Protection Act clearly states that "it is illegal for any person to terrify any animal".

She said any deliberate act of frightening or harming animals involving the use of fireworks may lead to prosecution under the Animals Protection Act 71 of 1962.

Stray and lost animals could be brought to the SPCA alternatively contact 031-7641212/3 or 073 335 9322 for emergencies.

Read more on:    spca  |  animals

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