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Fireworks and Horses

Every year we are approached by concerned horse owners wondering what they can do to calm their horses during the firework season. We’ve put together some advice that we hope will help, however if you’d like to talk to someone about what may be best for your own horses our equine team will be happy to advise you by phone on 01626 355 969.

  • Horses thrive best when they have a set routine. Sticking to what’s normal and keeping your horse with his usual companions should help to keep him more relaxed.
  • Ensure the horse’s environment is safe, with no objects that cause injury, especially if your horse becomes stressed.
  • Stay with your horse if you are unsure how he will react to the fireworks. Your presence may have a calming effect, and you’ll get to see how well he copes with the noise.
  • If possible keep your horse in an area where he will not be able to see the fireworks directly. Keeping the stable lights on during fireworks can help to lessen the effect of coloured flashes

Placing a radio near your horse’s stable can help to muffle the noise of fireworks.

  • Using a firework desensitisation CD can be really helpful, this will usually need to be started a few weeks before the start of the firework season if you’ve not used one before. Start quietly, just a few minutes at a time and gradually build up the time and volume until your horse accepts and is relaxed with the noises.
  • Give your horse plenty of hay to keep him busy.
  • Keep sand and water nearby in case of a fire around the stables. Make sure your fire extinguishers and emergency precautions are in good working order and everyone knows the fire drill.
  • Check your field for any stray fireworks or paper lanterns that might have landed before turning your horse back out. Paper lanterns sometimes have metal frames that are hard to see and can cause injury to your horse, as he may become entangled in it or even try to eat it!
  • If your horse suffers particularly from anxiety during firework season, speak to your vet for specific advice regarding your own horse.
  • Never endanger yourself by trying to handle a horse that has become dangerous.