Firework Night



Hello fiends,

Another busy week – Halloween capers of course, now what’s next Guy Fawkes Night – though people call it: Bonfire Night or Firework Night too


What’s it all about – well, a very long time ago, 1605 to be exact, Guido Fawkes (Guy for short) was part of a norty gang who wanted to blow up the Houses of Parliament with gunpowder because, they didn’t like the MPs, Lords or the King very much. They hid barrels of this dastardly stuff in the cellar and planned to set it off at the opening ceremony. But, a couple of these norty gang got scared and warned some of their fiends what they were planning – and even without Facebook or Instagram (they didn’t have the internet in those days) – the Kings men found out and caught Guy Fawkes red-handed and red-faced in the cellars. After a couple of days in the cells with only stale bread and water he told the Kings men who else was in the gang. And that was that; the whole gang had had their chips….not actual chips of course; they weren’t invented then either.

All Londoners were then encouraged to light bonfires to ‘celebrate’ that the Gunpowder Plot had been foiled. It became an Act of Parliament that on November 5th every year would become a day of ‘thanksgiving’. Over the years’ people began making a look-a-like of Guy Fawkes out of old clothes stuffed with straw and burning it on the bonfire and fireworks were introduced.

When the King made that Act of Parliament he said; “this testemonye of joy be carefull done without any danger or disorder” –  that means health and safety is much older than we thought!!


Us pets, and all animals really, aren’t keen on the fireworks or bonfire bit at all. They are too loud with flashes and bangs that send us running or barking or shivering and howling. And lots of children are scared too. Mum and her fiends wish that fireworks weren’t sold in shops and if there had to be fireworks they were only let off at specially run displays.


There are loads of safety tips and pet owners have lots of different ways to help their fella’s. The main thing to always remember is; never play with fireworks or throw them at other people or animals. You would be literally playing with fire if you did and that is not cool at all!

On the day; make sure that walks are finished early so; everyone is indoors and snug before the bangs start. Putting a t-shirt on a dog or snuggling it up tightly with cushions and covers can help make it feel safer. Some people put the television sound or music up loud or sing…….luckily mum turns up the television or distracts me with toys.


There are things that vets can give you too – like the Adaptil plug-in or collar for cats and dogs and in cases where fiends are very nervous vets can prescribe tablets. Aunty Jules calls them ‘Knock Out Drops’ – her old dog Barnaby and her fiends’ dog Bodie had them – they’d weave around a bit and then have a good sleep and miss all the fireworks.

If you are having a bonfire and have been building it over a few weeks – please check no hedgehogs have crept in there to hibernate.


Some older kids can be frightened of all the noise and flashes too so, if your fiends don’t want to go to a display or out at all on the 5th don’t force them or make fun of them – we all have things we don’t like!!


Stay safe fiends until next week



More About Autumn

Hello fiends,

This week has been fun and busy again but, I’ve been thinking – loads of things happen in Autumn so, thought we’d have a look at some more of them. They’ll be lots of scary Halloween things coming into the shops soon and adverts for local Fireworks Night Displays but, we’ll talk about those in a couple of weeks.


There are a couple of things you can do to prepare for those events: if you and your fiends are building a bonfire; keep an eye out that no hedgehogs make their winter nest in the bottom (check it each week and on the night) and if you have a dog or cat or little pet who’s not keen on big bangs and flashes – think about getting advice from your vet now, this week, about products and ways you can help it all be a little less stressful. Don’t mind saying; me and my cat sisters are pretty scared of fireworks and we stay very close to mum!! My fiend Rufus hides under loads and loads of cushions!


Back to other Autumn things: the bird world gets really busy. Me and my fiends love watching the Starlings doing that crazy flying thing. It’s brilliant; hundreds of Starlings collect together in trees, or on piers, or TV aerials or on roofs and all sing together, like a massive out of tune school choir. This is called roosting and then suddenly – they all take off together, flying in patterns all over the sky, whizzing about, looking like they can’t decide which way to go but, all staying together and going in the same direction!


Loads of Starlings flying together like this is called; ‘murmurations’, my fiend Moja says it looks like Bird Ballet! Bird experts think they do it as protection, that’s ‘safety in numbers’, or it’s a way of signposting the place to roost to other Starlings that are new to the area. I think the ‘safety in numbers’ idea is true –  when they’re all flying together it can look like a giant shadow monster!! Which is pretty scary if you think about it?!?


 The other thing Starlings and birds of all types do in Autumn is get ready to migrate – that means they fly off to live somewhere else for the colder months, like a winter holiday. So, some of those new Starlings flying around near your house could well be winter visitors from Eastern Europe who have come to the UK as, our winter is warmer than theirs! You can often spot birds flying in a V shape formation in the winter skies when they are heading off to warmer places.

Some Swans, fly all the way to the Arctic as, it has a really good short summer there when it’s cold here. And in the Artic Summer there’s twenty-four-hour daylight and loads of food to fatten them up before the flight home. What a long way to go for a slap up meal – Joe Allens would be easier and nearer!

Birds are fast and can go anywhere if they have enough energy so, they can fly to the best places for food and to live safely through the winter. The RSPB website and books are a great place to get more info.

There’s lots of reasons birds migrate but, the experts think that sometimes it’s just because they can! But some don’t go at all including, the beautiful Red Kite which is the bird on the left below.


Until next week, keep your eyes open for Starlings and their Bird Ballet and see if you can spot flocks of birds migrating.



Have a good week fiends