Keep your pets safe this Deepavali

Alarming Noise
Last Updated 31 October 2013, 14:12 IST

Deepavali is that time of the year when families get together, burst crackers and have fun. Often one forgets that animals and pets get agitated at the sound of crackers and many even run away from home and get lost. Every year, organisations like CUPA, People For Animals, Karuna and even veterinarians get many cases of burn injuries or missing pets.

Volunteers at these organisations say that handling such cases becomes stressful because it is a rarity for a pet to return home. Metrolife asks pet owners in the City about the precautions they are taking to ensure that their four-legged friends are safe and secure during Deepavali.

Parul, a professional, who owns a pet dog, says that every time her pet hears the sound of crackers, it runs under a table and starts shivering. “Over the years, it has started barking back at the sound. But we make sure we don’t let it out on the streets,” she says.

According to Sonali, a student, each dog reacts differently to the crackers. Dogs need extra attention from their owners during this time. Agrees Manisha, a student. “Being there in the same room as the dog helps it calm down and feel safe. I feel that the animal should always be under the family’s supervision so that it doesn’t panic and I make sure I keep petting it and don’t let it feel alone at any point of time,” she adds.

The same applies for cats. Azam, a retired professional, who owns a Persian cat, informs that cats can hear sounds nearly ten times higher than a human being.

“That’s why I make sure I keep the cat in a room, close all the windows, pull the screens and even soundproof the room as much as I can. I also don’t let it out in the morning. I keep it indoors because you never know what it will end up eating outside,” he adds.
But no matter how cautious one is, there are times when pets tend to get injured or even run away out of fear.

Kiran, a professional, makes sure that his pet always wears a collar with an identification tag which has his address and number on it. “This way, even if my dog runs away out of fear, whoever finds it can return it to me,” he adds.

 Krupa, a volunteer, at CUPA, suggests that this is the time when pet owners have to be extra attentive.

“In case a pet goes missing, one has to react immediately by first registering a complaint at the nearest police station and then distributing leaflets of the missing pet with a picture of it and informing the neighbouring shops,” she says.

Dr Pavan, a veterinarian, says that most of the times the animals don’t wander too far away from their territory. “So it’s always better to keep the nearby clinics or organisations informed about the missing pet as people who may find it may leave it in these places. Many are even micro-chipping their animals so that it is easier to identify the owners in case they go missing,” he adds.

In case of burn injuries, veterinarian Umesh says the owners should administer basic first-aid before taking the pet to the nearest clinic. “One can immediately pour cold water over the burn. Pouring egg white over it also helps remove the heat from the burn to a large extent. We need to make our pets comfortable with these changes and get rid of their fear the same way as we would make our kids understand,” he says.

(Published 31 October 2013, 14:10 IST)

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