Distraught owners have spoken out about losing their beloved dogs on bonfire night as two canines who were ‘scared to death’ collapsed and died over the weekend.
A 10-year-old Staffy Labrador cross was left ‘terrified’ by the noise and collapsed on the bathroom floor in Hemlington, North Yorkshire amidst a chorus of fireworks on Bonfire Night.
Tragically, the beloved canine died despite his owner’s attempts to resuscitate him via mouth to mouth.
Elsewhere another owner in Northern Ireland said his dog Ollie had died from a heart attack allegedly ’caused by fireworks’ last week.
According to owner Jeff Hull, the one-year-old Lhassa Apso had a seizure, which caused his heart to stop following the loud bangs the occurred over the weekend.
Other pet owners have also revealed how their dogs bolted and went missing for 36 hours -with one even running into the sea and swimming for nearly ten miles in Whitstable, Kent to get away from the noise.
Dexter (pictured), 10, a Staffy Labrador cross, was found ‘laid flat on the floor’ in the downstairs bathroom after running scared from noisy fireworks during Bonfire Night
Dexter (pictured) was ‘trembling’ before he collapsed and died during Bonfire Night. Owner Judith Watson, 63, shouted Dexter’s name after finding her beloved dog collapsed on the floor
Meanwhile another owner has been left heartbroken after his beloved pet died from a heart attack ’caused by fireworks’. Jeff Hull said that Ollie was so petrified of the loud bangs from fireworks that he suffered a seizure
Bam the dog is also recovering today after his astonished owners say the bang of fireworks saw him plunge into the sea and swim in terror for nearly ten miles
Pedigree Exmoor pony dies after a rocket firework is ‘deliberately set off’ on her grazing ground
The owner of a pedigree Exmoor pony is in ‘total shock’ following its death after a rocket firework was deliberately set off where she grazed.
Terrified Swift and four other free roaming ponies ‘lost the plot’ and galloped into the middle of Danebury Hill Fort, near Stockbridge.
Swift, 14, who weighed 12 stone 3 lbs- then ‘fell off the top’ and died from a suspected broken neck.
Yesterday distraught owner grandmother Juliet Burnet, 56, stressed: ‘Fireworks are banned there – they are not allowed.
‘I am totally shocked. It is a devastating loss.
‘It is so tragic – my son found her dead.
‘Fireworks had deliberately been set off in the field where they grazed.
‘The ponies lost the plot and they galloped into the middle of the fort. She fell off the top and broke her neck.
‘I found on the floor a lighter next to a rocket that had been set off.’
The four other ponies are now to be moved to a secret location.
The nine-year-old Japanese Akita was found, exhausted, shivering and bedraggled after running into the cold sea terrified of the loud bangs.
In Newquay, the owners of an Akita Shepherd cross named Edward are rejoicing after their five-year-old dog was found after a gruelling 36-hour search.
He ran off when fireworks made a loud bang on Bonfire Night and it was feared the pooch had plunged to his death over a 100ft seaside cliff – but miraculously he was found at the end of Newquay headland a day and a half later.
Ollie’s owner, Jeff Hull admitted he was left heartbroken after his beloved pet died from a heart attack ’caused by fireworks’.
He said that Ollie was so petrified of the loud bangs that he suffered a seizure on October 31, which caused the one-year-old Lhassa Apso to have a massive heart attack, tragically resulting in his heart stopping.
The beloved pooch, who suffered from epilepsy, had been running around and happily playing with his ball just hours before the incident.
Jeff, from Maghaberry, Co Down, shared the tragic news on social media.
He said: ‘Absolutely heartbroken Ollie suffered a massive heart attack last night when having a seizure caused by the noise of fireworks.
‘No one really seems to understand that small animals are petrified by sudden noise.
‘This amazing wee chap was playing with his ball at 5.30 last night and was in Sandra’s arms taking his last breath at 6.45.
‘Meet you at the rainbow bridge someday, I know you’ll be waiting for us.’
Ahead of Bonfire Night last week, the RSCPA said: ‘In the last five years, we’ve received 1,621 calls about fireworks and their effects on animals.’
Husband and wife, Judith and Malcolm Watson, spoke of their the Labrador staffie cross Dexter, who had been shaking and cowering as fireworks were set off around their home in Hemlington, North Yorkshire.
Just after 6pm, a huge bang caused Dexter to run out of the room, and moments later, Judith found the terrified canine collapsed in the downstairs bathroom.
Judith, 63, said: ‘I thought he was just in there trembling at first but he was laid flat out on the floor. Then I realised he had gone.
Another family put up a £500 reward after Edward the dog was terrified by fireworks and ran off. They have since been reunited with him after a frantic 36-hour hunt
‘I don’t know exactly where dogs’ hearts are but I tried pressing his chest and blowing into his mouth.
‘But it was so quick and there was nothing I could do to bring him back.’
On Friday evening, Dexter would usually walk with Malcolm, 67, to the fish and chip shop where he would get a sausage treat.
However, like so many pet owners across the country, the couple had to make allowances for Bonfire Night and keep their nervous pet indoors.
After the much-loved dog collapsed, frantic Judith called Malcolm who rushed home.
She added: ‘I was screaming and shouting Dexter’s name over and over. I was just hugging the dog and crying for a long time.
‘At the time I really wanted to hit something. There was that almighty bang then another one came when he had already gone.
‘It did die down eventually. And it’s all finished now – people have had their so-called fun but our whole lives have changed. He still had a lot of life left, it’s so unfair and so senseless.’
The debate around firework fear always intensifies in the lead up to the holiday season, and this latest episode wasn’t the only dog casualty during Bonfire Night.
In Cardiff, a family was left distraught after their five-year-old spaniel was run over and killed when it was spooked by noisy fireworks.
Edward, a five-year-old German Shepherd cross Akita, had run in terror over the edge of a sheer 100ft cliff and drowned in the sea at Newquay on the Cornwall coast.
He was spooked by the explosive bangs and flashes of fireworks on the headland overlooking jagged rocks and crashing rollers.
Owner, Kelly Broderick, said people searched along the clifftop coastal path from Towan to Crantock in Cornwall and scoured the nearby golf course and the River Gannel.
She said ‘He suffers from a cruciate injury to his leg and the speed he was last seen running in terror would have put a lot of pressure on it.’
Appeals posted on social media were shared, liked and commented on thousands of times. A £500 reward was offered for his safe return.
How to keep dogs safe during fireworks
- Make sure your dog or cat has somewhere to hide – perhaps under some furniture or in a cupboard – and can get to it at any time.
- Ensure your pet is kept in a safe and secure environment and can’t escape
- Make sure your pets are microchipped in case they do escape
- During fireworks season, walk dogs during daylight and keep pets indoors when fireworks are likely to be set off
- At nightfall, close windows and curtains and put on music to mask and muffle the sound of fireworks
Following around 36 hours of searches he was found at the end of Newquay headland.
He was tired, sore and hungry but is already relaxed and happy to be back home.
Relieved Kelly said she wanted to ‘thank the seriously amazing people of Newquay and afar for their help and messages of love and support.
She added: ‘We couldn’t have got him home without them. They have been out of this world and really gone over and above to help. We’ve been completely blown away.
‘He’s very sore – his legs are very tired and his foot pads are really bruised but he’s happy and chilled.
‘Very relieved to be home! We’re completely exhausted but could not be happier. He’s now catching up on some sleep.’
An RSPCA study in 2019 they found that 62% of dogs, 54% of cats and 55% of horses suffer from stress during fireworks.
Some believe unorganised displays should be banned due to distress it causes some animals as well as people who suffer with certain conditions such as PTSD or autism.
A petition calling for an urgent review of fireworks regulations has attracted 828,000 signatures.