Top tips to keep your dog calm this Bonfire Night


Keep the sparks outside this November 5th and make sure your pup isn’t overwhelmed

dogs and fireworks

New pet owners are being advised to think now about keeping their pets calm on Bonfire Night as ever greater numbers of UK households prepare to mark it with a dog in the house.

This year’s celebration is likely to be the first many have marked as new dog owners, following a boom in the number of pets being purchased by UK householders during the Covid-19 pandemic. Figures* estimate there are now 12 million canine companions across the UK and this year could be a different experience for many still getting to grips with the trials and tribulations Guy Fawkes night with a pup can bring.

Bonfire Night brings a host of new sights and sounds including crowds, bangs, sparklers, flashing and more, which a lot of animals simply don’t like – in fact, an estimated 45% of dogs** show signs of fear when they hear fireworks. 

Despite the chaos, there are a few things you can do to keep your dog safe and calm during the annual event, however. GoCompare pet insurance has come up with a handy guide of tips and tricks to help your dog cope this November 5th.

Here are just a few:

    • Keep your canine buddy inside - Take your dog out for their walk during the day, and if they need to go to the toilet again, go with them into the garden so they feel protected.
    • Close windows - Keep windows, doors, and curtains closed to muffle both the sound and sight of fireworks.
    • Use distractions – Keeping your dog stimulated is a good distraction from fear. Give them free rein of their toy box or turn up the television or music so that your dog will pay more attention to that noise rather than any nearby bangs.
    • Set up a ‘doggy den’ - allow your dog to take refuge if it gets too overwhelming. Provide bedding, toys, food and water in their favourite place.

Beyond the calming environment that you are able to create for your pet, you could also consider calming products. You can purchase a number of products online to help reduce your pet’s anxiety stress, including sprays, oils, wipes, anxiety vests and scent diffusers.

Your pet insurance policy may even cover such products as herbal medicines, as according to GoCompare Pet Insurance, out of a total 444 pet insurance policies 400 covered herbal medicine. But don’t forget to seek advice from your vet before giving your pet any complimentary or alternative therapy to help them get through Bonfire Night.

Hannah Isitt, pet expert at GoCompare said: “If you are considering complementary or alternative treatments to help your pet through Bonfire Night, check your pet insurance policy details before committing to any calming products or procedures. This is because the levels of cover for alternative therapies will vary between insurers and treatments are likely to have to be carried out by a qualified therapist and recommended by your vet, so it’s best to check with your insurer before you go ahead with any medicines.

“For those who are having to help their pet on its first bonfire night it can be daunting prospect, as they will either be totally unphased or hate it and show real signs of distress - but hopefully with our tips and tricks we hope you and your pet have a safe and enjoyable Bonfire Night.”

For more information, visit GoCompare’s website for more advice on alternative therapies for pets and more tips around pet safety on bonfire night.



*** According to a search on Defaqto Matrix on 12th October 2021 – out of a total 444 pet insurance policies, 400 cover herbal medicine.