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Bonfire Night: Safety for Pets and Children

Fireworks exploding in a shower of orange embers. We are reminded of just how important it is to respect fireworks due to the risk of burn injury.

Fireworks are fascinating, but keep your distance!

As the cold weather creeps in, autumn leaves transform into delightful shades of gold, copper, cinnamon and plum. We excitedly await the 5th of November to celebrate Guy Fawkes Night, also known as Bonfire Night. It’s a night of fireworks, blazing bonfires and communities coming together, but amidst the fun, it’s important to remember burn safety, especially for our pets and children. Here at White Cross Training, we’re experts in first aid and safety, and we’re ready to guide you through a fun-filled and safe bonfire night.

Child Safety Tips For Bonfire Night

Children love the magic of Bonfire Night. The mesmerising flames, the showers of sparks and the crackling of the bonfire can be thrilling, but they also pose risks. Here are some safety tips to ensure the night doesn’t end in a burn or a visit to the first aid kit:

  • Firework Distance: Keep children at a safe distance from fireworks. They can be unpredictable and may cause burns if not handled correctly.
  • Sparkler Supervision: Sparklers can reach temperatures of up to 2000°C, hotter than a welding torch. Always supervise children with sparklers and make sure they wear gloves. TOP TIP – place a sparkler handle into a potato or carrot to make it easier for young children to grip and to keep away from their bodies. Place used sparklers into a bucket of water.
  • Bonfire Boundaries: Set clear boundaries around the bonfire to prevent children from getting too close and risking burns.
  • First Aid Kit: Keep a first aid kit handy and know the basics of treating burns, just in case.
  • Burns: Burns need to be cooled immediately under cold, clean, running water for at least 20 minutes. Call an ambulance (999) if the burn is to the face, airway, hands or genitals, or if it’s large or deep. If you’re not sure how severe a burn is, or you’re at all worried, get medical help immediately. Cling film can be used as a burn dressing, but it must be wrapped loosely to allow for swelling.

NHS – Burns and Scalds

St Johns Ambulance – Burns and Scalds in Children

A gloved hand holds a carrot. Imbedded in the top of the carrot is a sparkler to prevent a burn injury.

A sparkler in a carrot could prevent a burn injury.

Pet Safety Tips During Bonfire Night

Bonfire Night can be a stressful time for our furry friends. The loud noises and bright lights can cause anxiety, and, like children, pets are also at risk of burns. Here are some tips for a pet-friendly Bonfire Night:

  • Indoors Is Best: Keep pets indoors during Bonfire Night to protect them from the noise and risk of burns. Walk pets earlier in the day.
  • Distraction Techniques: Distract your pets with their favourite toys or treats to keep their attention away from the fireworks. 
  • Screen Light and Noise: Keep lights on and TV or music to minimise the impact of flashes and bangs from outside.
  • Comfortable Space: Create a comfortable, quiet space for your pet to retreat to if they get scared.
  • De-sensitise: If your pet finds fireworks especially challenging, help them become used to loud noises over time. 
  • First Aid Kit: Just like for children, having a first aid kit ready for your pets is crucial. In addition, knowing basic pet first aid could be a lifesaver, so consider booking onto one of our Pet First Aid courses. 
  • Burns: Pets, like humans, need quick action if they suffer a burn. Use cold, clean running water to take the heat out of the burn for at least 20 minutes. Protect the burned area with cling film but it needs to be kept loose to allow for swelling.

PDSA – Pet First Aid for Burns

Pro Trainings – Pet Burns and First Aid

A fierce bonfire throws embers and dark smoke up into the black sky. Getting to close could cause a burn injury.

A bonfire warms the heart and soul, but carries the risk of burn injuries.

Stay Safe with White Cross Training

At White Cross Training, we’re passionate about safety all year round. Our first aid training courses are for anyone wanting to help adults, children or pets. They cover everything from minor burns to life-saving techniques.

Remember, Bonfire Night should be a time of fun and celebration, without accidents and burns. By following our tips and being prepared, you can ensure a safe, enjoyable night for everyone, including your pets and children. Don’t let a lack of safety knowledge be the spark that ruins the night. Arm yourself with first aid knowledge from White Cross Training and enjoy a burn-free Bonfire Night.

White Cross Training – First Aid For Babies and Children

White Cross Training – Pet First Aid

Remember, Remember, the 5th of November

As we prepare for another exciting Bonfire Night, let’s celebrate responsibly. The whole family, pets included, should be able to enjoy the night without the threat of burns. A little bit of preparation, a sprinkle of caution and a good dose of first aid knowledge can go a long way in ensuring a safe and enjoyable Bonfire Night.

So, grab your snug jackets, your fluffy mittens, and your sparklers, and get ready for a fun, burn-free Bonfire Night. And remember: if you need any first aid training or advice, White Cross Training is here to help. Here’s to a safe, fun-filled Bonfire Night!