Diwali celebrations are all about fireworks, lamps and lights. But it's not the same for the poor animals and birds that spend sleepless nights hiding in dark spots and occasionally even falling victim to these harmful firecrackers. This Diwali season, a number of youngsters have vowed to stay away from crackers of any sort, for the sake of their pets and are planning on celebrating a pet-friendly Diwali! We talk to a few youngsters from the city, about how they are now involving their furry buddies in the festivities at their houses!
A number of youngsters in the city have taken a vow to not burst loud firecrackers, which scare off animals. “I haven’t been bursting crackers since almost five years. Apart from further polluting the already polluted environment, crackers also cause harm to animals. Their hearing is much more sensitive than ours so loud sounds are obviously very jarring to them and cause huge panic. In order to soothe our dog at times like this, we would wrap her ears with a towel to try and block out as much sound as possible and also make her listen to some calm soothing music,” says Sneha Suhas, a comedian from the city. “It also helps to have a vet on speed dial for strays that have been injured by these crackers,” she adds.
Agreeing with Sneha’s advice, a corporate employee Samhita Shinde recalls a saddening instance. “Kids in my neighbourhood have already started lighting crackers which scared off my neighbours dog who ran away. We have been out on the streets calling for him but there is no sign. We can’t stop other people from bursting crackers, but we can do our part by reducing the stress on animals. And since it’s a festival, lighting the non-noisy ones like the chakra, flowerpot and twinkly sparkers won’t render harm to animals. This Diwali, we have also opened up our apartment basement to strays on our street to provide a kind of safe haven for them,” the 23 year old reveals
Imparting some more advice, animal lover Lanwin Pais who houses cats and a dog says, “No doubt they get affected by the loud bangs. But during this festive season, I make sure they don’t leave the house and lock my dog in a room that he is comfortable and familiar with and shut all the windows to minimise the sound. Stray dogs are also bound to eat the garbage and residue leftover from the crackers which is obviously very harmful, so last year I along with people in my neighbourhood went on a cleaning spree to minimise the after-effects.”