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Three alternative ways to spend bonfire night

This year, with many firework displays being cancelled due to Covid-19, many will turn to having their own displays in their gardens. 

This not only causes concern for wildlife but to our pets too. Many animals are nervous around loud bangs and the intensity of fireworks on bonfire night can leave many pets worried

Here’s how to have a pet-friendly bonfire night to encourage a more peaceful evening for all creatures great and small.

Firework treasure hunt

If it’s the look and feel of fireworks you’re missing - the fun of finding out what they’ll be when they go off in the sky - how about treating bonfire night like Easter? 

You can make lots of firework decorations using just a toilet roll inner tube and some bits around the house, then hiding them away and sending your kids on a firework treasure hunt!

What you’ll need

  • Toilet roll inner tubes
  • Material to trail from the firework: pipe cleaners/ribbons/wool/an old t-shirt cut into strips – be as creative as you like!
  • Scissors – to cut the material to size
  • Pen or pencil
  • Paint or colouring pens – if you’d like to decorate the toilet roll tube itself
  • Kitchen roll
  • Sweets, chocolates or mini toys - whatever will fit that you think your kids will love

Important: Keep the firework hiding places out of reach of any pets – chocolate is toxic to many of our pets and small toys or sweets can be choking hazards.

Decorating your firework

If you’d like to decorate the inner tube, now is the time to do it. Be as inventive as you like but think bright colours for fireworks!

  1. Push a pen or pencil through the lower half of the inner tube. Repeat and continue around until you have five or six holes in a row. These holes are to push the fabric of your choosing through, so think about it as the base of your firework.
  2. Using different colour ribbons, pipe cleaners etc. push these through the holes and tie them to secure them
  3. Fold up your goodies in a piece of kitchen roll and stuff this inside the tube along with the clue to lead them to their next firework
  4. Find a good hiding place, this needs to be out of the reach of any pets – this game is one for humans only
  5. Repeat above steps for at least three fireworks

How to create your firework clues

  1. Clues need to be given in the order you’d like them to find the fireworks
  2. You will give them their first clue to lead them to their first firework
  3. When they’ve found the first firework, you will have already placed the next clue into the inner tube. So, when they unearth the treats, they’ll also find their next clue to lead them to their next firework.
  4. Continue the clues in this way until they’ve found all the fireworks - you may want to save the best treats until last!

Firework biscuits for dogs

Thinking of ways to include your pet in bonfire night without the stress? You can make some delicious chicken and rice firework biscuits that they will love you for!

Playlist

Though we can hope our pets will remain calm during the fireworks, many don’t. Help block out the noise with some soothing music. 

Creating a playlist that your pet will love on your preferred streaming site such as YouTube, Spotify etc. can help to ease those nerves. Think soothing melodies to ease your pet’s anxieties. Classical, jazz, film scores – this is your chance to get inventive with song choice. 

Tip: Adaptil plug-ins are a good addition to the home around bonfire night. They contain pheromones which may help promote a feeling of calm in your pet.

 

— Page last updated 08/10/2020

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