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A missing pets service reveals the true canine cost of Bonfire Night

A  dog lies beneath a blanket on bonfire night dog-serious
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The manager of Missing Pets Perth and Kinross, Katie McCandless-Thomas tells of her being inundated with reports of dogs lost in the wake of this year’s Bonfire Night.

By Nick Whittle

Published on the 07/11/2019, 16:00, Updated on the 19/12/2019, 15:22

Writes The Courier, Ms McCandless-Thomas was “inundated with pleas” from owners whose dogs had vanished into the night beneath the bangs of fireworks. She was contacted eight times on Tuesday evening.

This year was actually a bit quieter than previous bonfire nights,” McCandless-Thomas told The Courier, “but it was still absolutely horrendous.

We had calls from people who had gone out early into the North Inch, before dusk, to try and avoid displays but there were still people letting off fireworks at that time.

What was happening was that dogs who were out on walks, or in their gardens, panicked and ran off.”


McCandless-Thomas says she believes a general awareness is growing about the effect the noise of fireworks has on dogs. But conversely, the number of fireworks being set off is increasing, as are the associated injuries to humans.

Last year The Independent reported on the plea of the British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons to bring fireworks' packaging in line with that of cigarettes to include graphic images of injuries caused by the misuse of pyrotechnics.


McCandless-Thomas agrees with the need for a greater licencing of fireworks. The Missing Pets group has urged its followers to sign a petition calling for firework displays to be licensed.

We would like to see tighter controls,” she told The Courier. “There are also alternatives, such as silent displays which we would urge groups to look into.

I think more and more pet owners are speaking out and sharing their experiences this year. People do seem to be becoming more and more aware of the upset that fireworks are causing.”