July 4th is a day for celebration here in the U.S. Fireworks and parties are all fun for us, but can be terrifying to our pets. Unfortunately, July 4th is the day of the year when the largest number of cats are lost.
Here are a few July 4th safety tips for cats:
- Keep Your Cat Indoors In Safe Room. If you’re planning a get-together, set up a room with a litter box, bed, food and water before guests arrive. Set up a radio tuned to some relaxing music to mask the sound of fireworks. Put a sign on the door indicating this is a cat safe room, and keep the door closed.
- Advise Guests To Watch For Cat. In the event your cat accidentally escapes the safe room, make sure guests know to be on the lookout for him.
- Schedule Play Session. A play session before the festivities start will help burn some of your cat’s energy and will help him relax once the commotion begins.
- Make Sure Cat Is Wearing Current ID. In the event your cat does get lost, having current ID for him is very important. If your cat has a microchip, ensure all chip information is current.
- Have A Current Picture. Have a current picture of your cat on hand in the event he escapes and search is needed.
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For cats highly prone to anxiety, there are many anti-anxiety products available. Although this post specifies solutions for cats, if you have dogs that are stressed by July 4th fireworks, most of these will work for them, too (exception would be Feliway).
July 4th Calming Solutions
There are a few options available. The concept is by swaddling the pet, he will feel safer and thus calmer. If your cat will tolerate this, the vest I’ve used is the Comfort Zone Calming Vest. It comes in various sizes (the extra-small fits pet 8-14 pounds). I’ve used it with my dog April and seen good results.
Thundershirt also has a calming vest solution, and there is a version specifically for cats. I haven’t tried this one, but many have seen good results with it.
Calming Solutions: Rescue Remedy and Phrenomones
Rescue Remedy is an all natural product developed derived from floral essences to help relieve pet anxiety. A few drops added to your pet’s food or water regularly work to reduce stress and anxiety. I have some pet care clients that have benefitted from using Rescue Remedy.
Feliway is a phrenemone liquid that helps calm cats. It come in a variety of forms. One of the most popular is a diffuser. This allows the liquid to cover a larger area, which works well for multi-cat households.
It may take some time to see results, set them up as soon as possible so they have time to get established before the 4th.
Another option to consider for easing July 4th anxiety for your pet is anti-anxiety chews. These products come in treat form and contain natural ingredients that provide a calming effect for pets.
These are two of the options available in treat form, but there are others available.
There are other products available to provide a calming effect for your cat, but these are the ones I’m most familiar with, and have seen results with pet clients.
As mentioned above, results may take a while to see. Don’t become discouraged if you don’t see immediate results. Every cat is different, so a solution for one cat may not be the answer for another.
Regardless, please keep your cats inside on July 4th. People often set off fireworks throughout the day, rather than exclusively at night.
Don’t let your cat become a July 4th statistic. Have you found a calming solution that works especially well for your cat? If so, please share, we’d love to hear from you!
Have a safe and happy July 4th!