Helping your pet cope with storms and loud noises

The best and easiest way to calm pets during a storm is to remain close to them. If any pets are outdoors, bring them inside making certain to allow them time to potty and pee before doing so in order to prevent accidents in the house, which are difficult to clean without the necessary chemicals with enzymes. While the storm is brewing as in that of hurricane -types, it is important to withhold food and water until the eye of the storm passes. Only then should one give a small amount of food and water. When the eye is overhead, take a quick trip outdoors to allow your pet to relieve himself/herself and then head back into shelter immediately.

If puppies are among the frightened during storms, it helps tremendously to place them in a warm, cozy area with thick fuzzy blankets and one of the old-fashioned “tick-tock” clocks. These clocks mimic the sound of the mother’s heartbeat while in the uterus. It eases the pups’ fears by allowing them to believe their mom is nearby. Additionally, add a hot water bottle beneath the blanket so the puppies can snuggle next to it along with the clock. It will keep the puppies calmer than anything else one can do.

The same premise works equally well on most large dogs; however, the best way to handle larger dogs is to speak softly to them and sit with them brushing their fur or stroking their backs until the storm passes.

Cats are an entirely new ball of wax, as they say. If the cats are kittens, the same procedure above for puppies will work wonders; however, if dealing with an adult cat the best thing to do is to continue talking softly. Find somewhere in the home that is a safety zone with blankets curled into a bundle for the cat to hide. The marketing cat climbing houses work wonders. Add a small baby’s blanket into one or two of the opening housing holes so the cat can hide from the storm. Cats have a tendency to scratch and claw so it is best to leave them alone while a storm is brewing outdoors. It is imperative to keep your distance from the frightened animal lest you find yourself in dire need of stitches. The claws of a cat can rip one’s hands, arms, legs, and other body parts to shreds when the animal is frightened so if you wish to save yourself from an emergency room visit where it is highly probable that you will receive anything from a tetanus shot and/or series of rabies shots. This is especially true if the cat does not belong to you nor has tags proclaiming any sign of a rabies vaccine tag. This is equally true of stray dogs as well.

Once the storm passes, be sure to check outside for fallen power lines and debris that can hurt your outdoor animals. If fallen lines exist, call the power company immediately and continue keeping the animals indoors. Once the area is safe, let the outdoor animals back outside in their particular area.

Regarding loud noises, it is important to associate your pets of all types with loud noises. This allows these loud noises to become less of a threat or distraction once the animal obtains adulthood. It is simply a part of being a responsible pet owner. Stores such as PetsMart offer classes on a weekly basis regarding obedience, dog distractions, and pet behavior. Check into attending a class in your local area to better prepare your animal and yourself for when storms and loud noises become a problem. While there, be sure to take time to spay and/or neuter your pet. This is also the responsible thing to do as a pet owner.

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