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How to help your cat cope with firework season

Fun for you... Scary for cats

Although loud noises are very frightening for cats too, they don’t always seem to show as many behavioural changes as dogs do. The bigger problem for cats is often stress caused by changes to their environment or routine, especially when they are used to being outdoors and this changes to being kept in the house more.

Signs to look out for include:
  • Excessive grooming
  • House soiling
  • Vertical scratch marking
  • Less interaction with you 
  • Acting withdrawn 
  • Hiding away 
  • Over or under eating 

Just like dogs, a few simple changes can really help cats cope during firework season and the winter months when they tend to spend more time in the home. 

If you have any questions or concerns, you can always speak to a vet or nurse at your local practice.

Environmental changes

To help your cat feel safe ensure they have a comfortable, warm and easily accessible place to sleep and hide inside. This can be an igloo, cardboard box, even the top of a cupboard whatever your cat feels most comfortable in.

Ensure your cat is safely indoors before dark and all doors, windows and cat flaps are locked so that they cannot escape should they be startled.

Playing relaxing music or watching TV can also help to muffle the loud bangs, and having treats and fun toys to hand can certainly help provide a distraction from what is going on outside

Provide them with plenty of litter trays to use placed in different locations. This is especially important if your cat is used to toileting outdoors - we would suggest one per cat plus one extra and make sure you ‘practice’ ahead of the fireworks season.

If you have more than one cat, ensure you have separate feeding stations and water dishes as well as plenty of elevated hiding places for them to escape to.


See for more information on resource management.


Pheromone support

When cats feel happy in their environment they will mark the area by rubbing their face against objects in your home. When they do this they are leaving behind a facial pheromone which tells your cat the area is safe and familiar.

FELIWAY® is a synthetic copy of this pheromone and is scientifically proven to help prevent or reduce stress-related behaviours and help cats adjust to their environment. Speak to your vet about the best way to use it.

On the night 'Top Tips'

  • Ensure your cat has a safe, warm area to hide away in. 
  • Use FELIWAY® to help make them feel more secure.
  • Treats and toys can be used as a distraction but make sure you’re not preventing your cat from finding a safe hiding place by holding or cuddling them. 
  • Ensure all windows and doors are shut. 
  • Close the curtains and turn on the TV or play music to muffle the sound of the fireworks.
  • Tempt your cat to come indoors by feeding them early in the evening when it is still light outside. 
  • Ensure they are microchipped. 
See for more information.