As the calendar turns to months involving erratic weather, storms and rains, it gets a bit uneasy for animals. Cats and dogs, the most common pet in households show signs of distress, ranging from mild to manic, during the events of a storm.
Animals, including felines and canines, are quite sensitive to barometric pressure changes and can sense the oncoming storm. Thunderstorms and lightning can also be distressing to your pets.
While many pets are not as uncomfortable during such a time, some show signs of what is called storm anxiety or storm phobia. The condition is quite common, but the increased severity of it needs immediate attention.
If your pet shows signs of acute storm anxiety, here are a few tips that will help you attend them during a thunderstorm or bad weather.
It is important for pet parents to make some behavioural modifications way before the onset of the monsoon season or at a time of the year when storms are scarce. If your pet is sensitive to storms, try establishing a rewarding culture for staying calm. Make them used to the sound of thunder and reward them for being calm.
You must assign a safe place for your pet where they can go during the storm. This place in your house must be quiet and comforting. Some pets create their own safe place, but if they do not, you must take action for the same. Try to include this safe place in your desensitisation training.
Snug wraps and shirts work quite well to calm your pets. There is a product available which is a garment equipped with a pressure-inducing mechanism. The garment has a calming effect on pets and is similar to swaddling a baby.
Reward Calm Before All The Time
As a pet parent, you should always reward calm behaviour all year long. But make sure to not overdo it as it can spoil your pet. Practice getting your pet calm and settled on command.
Lastly, if these methods are not effective, try consulting a veterinarian and seek some anxiety medication for your dog. But the medications must be your last resort as usage of medications may have some side effects on your pet.