Fireworks threat to animals
Reporter A HORSE lover is mourning the anniversary of the death of her mount Solo after a bonfire display sent it into a deadly panic.
Devastated owner Fiona Hohmann released distressing photographs of her horse Solo to show the reality of what fireworks can do to animals.
The 57-year-old had owned the horse for nearly five years. This is how you can help keep your pets safe on Bonfire night .
Almost a year on, she told WalesOnline: “I don’t want to spoil people’s fun and on Bonfire Night you can prepare for fireworks and just get on with it.
“A week after bonfire night, fireworks should not be allowed to take place. How was I supposed to know that a display would be going off.
“I know first hand just how scared Solo is of fireworks. On Bonfire Night I locked him inside his stable and I stayed with him until midnight to calm him down.
“When the vet arrived they said that they were left with no choice but to put him down. He was deeply loved and he will be missed.”
It is illegal to set off fireworks near livestock or horses in fields, or close to buildings that house livestock. The offence carries a fine of up to £20,000 Fiona Hohmann, from Murton, who has been left devastated after her horse died of shock and/or a prison term of up to six months.
It is against the law to set off fireworks between the hours of 11pm and 7am, except on Bonfire Night when the cut-off is midnight, and New Year’s Eve, Diwali and Chinese New Year, when the curfew is 1am.
A spokesman for the RSPCA said: “Many animals, of all shapes and sizes, find fireworks frightening, and it is important for people to remain responsible and bear in mind that animals may become confused, distressed and can even go into shock when fireworks are let off in or around their immediate surroundings.
“Many animals have very acute hearing and suffer greatly from stress as a result of firework displays. Not only this, but fireworks can also in some circumstances be extremely dangerous and can result in serious injuries or even death to an animal.
“We would always advise that people should never set off fireworks close to any animal and wherever possible, people should tell their neighbours of any plans for a display in advance so that pet owners have time to effectively prepare and keep their animals calm and safe.
“In a situation where setting them off near animals and wildlife cannot be avoided, fireworks should be directed well away from any animals nearby and should attempt to cause the least disruption possible.
“If you find an animal that you think may be suffering or in shock as a result of fireworks please contact a local vet immediately for advice or, in the instance of a cruelty incident, please contact our national cruelty line on 0300 1234 999.”