Does thunder make your pet tremble? Just like us humans, our animal companions can experience anxiety during storms. From the loud noises to the flashes of lightning, storms can be daunting for our pets, leading to stress, unease, and fear. This is why it’s vital that you know how to best calm your pet in these situations and ensure that it feels safe and secure in any weather. Here, we’ll discuss four ways to help your pet overcome its storm anxiety.
Keep Calm—It Can Sense It
One of the most important things you can do for your pets in a crisis is to stay calm. Our pets are intuitive creatures and can pick up on our emotions, especially when they are already sensing a storm. Therefore, remain calm and composed during bad weather. If you show signs of distress or anxiety, your pet may mirror your emotions and become even more agitated. Staying relaxed and composed will send a message to your pet that everything is under control.
Acclimate It to Your Safety Shelter
Another effective way to help your pet’s storm anxiety is by gradually acclimating it to your safety shelter, such as a basement or an interior room without windows. There are several reasons to get your pet used to the shelter, but the most vital is that it keeps it feeling secure and, therefore, cuts back on its stress. Spend short periods of time with your pet in the shelter during calm weather and offer treats, praise, and positive reinforcement. Over time, your pet will come to associate the space with good feelings and will feel more comfortable going there during storms.
Distract It With Toys and Treats
Offering toys and treats can also be an excellent way to distract your pet from the storm. Puzzle toys or your pet’s favorite chew toy can keep its mind occupied and release pent-up anxiety. Additionally, don’t forget the treats; they can serve as a positive reinforcement and soothe your pet during times of stress. The more positivity you can bring to the situation, the better off your companion will be.
Consider Professional Help if Necessary
Keep in mind that if your pet’s storm anxiety persists, you may need to consult a veterinarian or professional trainer. They can assess your pet’s anxiety symptoms and suggest tailored treatment options, such as anxiety medication or behavioral therapy. Anxiety can come from an infinite number of sources, and giving your pet specialized attention in more severe cases ensures the best possible care and support.
As a loving and responsible pet owner, understanding your pet’s anxiety during storms is essential. By implementing these tips and techniques, you can create a safer, calmer environment for your pet during bad weather, giving it and yourself peace of mind. Don’t wait for the next storm to hit; start preparing today and ensure a thunderstorm is no longer a recipe for disaster.