Worthing woman highlights impact of fireworks on dogs ahead of New Year's Eve: "He shakes like a leaf"

A Worthing dog owner said fireworks leave her eight-year-old rescue Staffie Harley 'shaking like a leaf' and reduced to 'a nervous wreck'.

Thursday, 31st December 2020, 1:42 pm
Updated Thursday, 31st December 2020, 1:46 pm
Harley the dog

It comes as the RSPCA puts pressure on the Government to introduce tougher regulations around the sale and use of fireworks.

The charity said New Year's Eve would spark 'another period of celebrations, leading to more stress and anxiety for animals'.

Claire McParland, from Worthing, said her dog Harley spends 'hours hiding and trembling during fireworks season'.

She said: “My husband and I adopted Harley when he was just 15 months old.

"He’s always been a nervous little dog and is very noise sensitive but this worsened when my husband and our other dog died.

“We’ve been working with our vet and behaviourists to help Harley but fireworks continue to reduce him to a nervous wreck.

"He shakes like a leaf.

"This year is actually an improvement on how he’s reacted in previous years.

"It’s so upsetting to see him in such a state even for one evening.

"But this isn’t just for one night, it goes on for days as people around us set off fireworks at different times on different days.”

A RSPCA spokesman said: "Over the last four years, we’ve received 1,543 calls about fireworks affecting animals.

"That’s why, in 2019, we launched our #BangOutOfOrder campaign calling for: The restriction of the private use of fireworks to agreed traditional dates (November 5, New

Year's Eve, Chinese New Year and Diwali); The maximum permitted noise level of fireworks for public sale to be reduced to 90 decibels.

"The current allowed level, 120 decibels (equivalent to a jet aircraft taking off) should only be used at licensed public displays.

"All public fireworks displays to be licensed by the relevant licensing authority and information about the proposed display must be provided in the local area several weeks in

advance with a process for local residents to appeal against the granting of the licence.

"This process should also apply to people seeking to hold private displays at special events such as weddings;

"Fireworks labelled as 'loud' or 'low noise' to allow consumers to make informed decisions."

To support the campaign, visit the RSPCA site here.