Welfare charity’s survey aims to assess impact of fireworks on horses

  • A welfare charity is calling on owners to complete a survey on the impact of fireworks as concerns are raised ahead of potentially “detrimental” New Year’s Eve celebrations.

    Blue Cross launched the online survey, which is open until 10 December, in the hope of gaining more data on the concerns of fireworks within the equine community.

    **Take the survey here**

    A spokesman for the charity said as the English lockdown was in place from 5 November, many people chose to host personal firework displays in their own gardens or private fields on Bonfire Night.

    “We are concerned about the rising numbers of personal celebrations in the lead up to New Year’s Eve and the detrimental effect this can have on pets and horses, who may be fearful of the sights and sounds,” he said.

    Blue Cross education manager Kerry Taylor added that in these changing times it is important to understand the concerns owners have around fireworks season and the impact these can have on their animals.

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    “Horses have a natural and innate flight response; and we know some fare badly when local fireworks are set off and we are hoping to understand the national picture in greater detail,” she said.

    On 2 November MPs debated a 2019 petition calling for a ban on the sale of fireworks to the public. While the government stated it understood the “strong feelings” around fireworks, it said a ban would not mean the “issue would disappear”.

    Other work this year included the launch of an awareness campaign by the Office for Product Safety Standards (OPSS) providing safety tips on using fireworks responsibly, with references included to pets and vulnerable people. The OPSS has also commissioned a testing programme to determine the noise level of common types of fireworks sold for public use.

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