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Cape Town - Remember your pets this November is the plea from animal rights groups in the wake of Diwali celebrations and for Guy Fawkes on Tuesday night.
The City of Cape Town has also urged residents to be sensible with their celebrations.
Tears Animal Rescue group wrote: “We are supposed to wear hearing protection when exposed to anything above 85 decibels. Fireworks typically produce about 140 decibels - enough to immediately damage human hearing.
“A dog’s hearing is twice as sensitive as a human’s and a cat’s is three times as sensitive, so the bangs from fireworks can be extremely distressing for them.”
Moyo Ndukwana from the Cape of Good Hope SPCA’s inspectorate said: “Their natural response would be to try and escape the sound, with sometimes tragic consequences.”
To make the noise less frightening for furry friends, keep them inside with the doors and windows shut to block out as much of the bangs as possible.
Make sure all pets have name tags with contact numbers on so that they can easily be returned home should they bolt in fright. Feed them, give them something to chew on, and if a pet is particularly sensitive, consider a sedative from the vet.
The city has stipulated eight areas where fireworks can legally be set off:
Bishop Lavis sports field, Wesfleur sports field, Macassar Beach parking lot, Swartklip Sports Complex, Maidens Cove parking lot, Athlone Stadium parking area, Strandfontein Pavilion and the beachfront opposite the Tourism Centre in Table View.
It is illegal to buy fireworks from any vendors who are not licensed, and only over-16s may purchase and discharge them.
“In spite of this legislation, fireworks are still sold in many corner cafés to anyone with money to buy and let off at home, where they pose a potential danger,” said the SPCA’s Lamees Martin.
Last year, eight children were injured while setting off fireworks, and one ton of fireworks confiscated from illegal traders, according to the City of Cape Town’s website. For more information, see www.capetown.gov.za.
Cadet News Agency