‘I know people want to enjoy bonfire night but please spare a thought for animals who suffer so badly every year.’

A Hornchurch woman is urging Havering residents to please remember animals as they celebrate November 5th this year.

With the cancellation of all large fireworks display more people will resort to having fireworks at home, meaning more noise in our neighbourhoods.

Maria has a three year old rescue dog that struggles severely with fireworks every year.

“It’s awful, they start letting them off earlier and earlier each year. If it was one night a year we could cope with it but it isn’t. It starts at the end of October and carries on until after the 5th.

“The impact it has on our animals is huge. My dog starts shaking, she won’t eat, she can’t sleep. She hides under the bed shaking and I have tried all sorts of tactics to help her.

“As she is a rescue dog I don’t know what other horrors she may have faced but I know that for the last two years when it comes to this time she shakes so badly and hides for hours under the bed. It breaks my heart to see this all because people are so insensitive.”

The RSPCA also fears this year could be a nightmare and recently wrote; “We fear this fireworks season could be the worst in decades for animals as more people opt for diy displays at home due to Covid restrictions cancelling organised public displays.

“Every year we receive hundreds of calls about fireworks affecting animals, this is why in 2019 we launched our #BangOutOfOrder campaign calling for tighter controls and regulations around the sale and use of fireworks.”

Dr Mark Kennedy an animal welfare expert said: “We understand people want to enjoy celebrating Bonfire night and we don’t want to spoil the fun. Unfortunately lockdown measures this year mean that public displays are unlikely to go ahead. We urge people to please be considerate and keep neighbours with animals including those with nearby horses informed of plans well in advance so they can make preparations to reduce stress to their animals.”

Dr Kennedy also asks people to remember our wildlife that are at risk especially hedgehogs who hide under leaves.

“I have heard of many horror stories,” continued Maria, “Dogs having fits, horses getting impaled on fence posts, cats having heart attacks. It’s heartbreaking. I know people want to enjoy bonfire night but please spare a thought for animals who suffer every year and not let them go off for hours and hours.”

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