– Readers of the Daily Dog may recall our recent post on the Thundershirt dog calming vest that helps dogs stay calm during thunderstorms. In today’s Post we follow up with a list of helpful tips provided by Veterinarians – tips that also help dogs combat thunderstorm anxiety.
With Summer rolling on, much of Australia has experienced its fair share of thunderstorms this season. At pups4sale we regularly hear disturbing reports of dogs being beside themselves during storms, taking off at the first rumble of thunder in the distance, or even dogs disappearing never to return as a result of fleeing a thunderstorm.
To help our readers prevent scenarios such as above from happening to their own four-legged friends, from right here in sunny (and thunderstorm prone!) Queensland we have the first list of suggestions from Bmag:
Bring your pets inside – don’t wait to see if the storm hits before locking your pets safely away.
Ensure your pets have up-to-date identification and vaccinations – in case they do escape, this will help to bring them home quickly and in good health.
Consider your pets in your evacuation plan – if you have to leave, will you be able to bring your pets with you to your destination? Some relief shelters and hotels don’t accept pets, so consider leaving them with friends and investigate boarding kennels, veterinarians, and what shelters accept animals.
Always ensure you properly restrain your pets, even when travelling in cars, as their agitation from the storm can cause them to act out of character. Remember your agisted animals (pets kept off-premises on another property, like horses) – consider their safety and incorporate plans for them in your evacuation strategy.
Cater for your pets in your emergency kit – don’t forget to include their food, water and medication when preparing. If pets go missing, check with local pounds, animal shelters, animal control authorities, RSPCA and boarding kennels – and remember to take a recent photo of your pet with you to help identify them quickly.
Animals can be distraught and disoriented after a storm – try and keep them calm and comforted during and after by re-establishing routine. Storms can wash away the usual sights and smells of the neighbourhood so keep an eye on pets for a few days after to make sure they’re settling in again.
Watch out for unexpected dangers – don’t let pets roam free in case there are fallen power lines or even snakes that have been disturbed by the weather
Petmd from the United States has some additional valuable suggestions to add:
Staying In – if you’re staying home to ride out the storm, keep your pet in its carrier or on a leash. You never know when you might be forced to evacuate. And even if that doesn’t happen, you don’t want to be tracking down a petrified pet during the chaos. Therefore, secure your pet before the storm hits.
Stay Calm – whether you leave early, choose to stay, or are required to evacuate due to the storm’s severity or due to house damage, remember to stay calm. Your pet can sense your emotions, so a calming demeanor can lead to a less-panicked pet. Oh, and don’t forget to speak to your pet in a calm, soothing voice, too.
The pups4sale team think the above provides some very handy, practical suggestions dog owners would be wise to take on board should their dog suffer from thunderstorm anxiety. Combined with using the Thundershirt vest we have previously recommended, such tips will definitely help minimise harm coming to our best friends the next time a thunderstorm rolls in.
Editor’s note: As always, the Daily Dog does not seek nor accept any financial inducement for recommending a particular product – such as the Thundershirt vest mentioned in this Post.