Canine Anxiety –
Helping Your Dog Overcome Fear of Thunderstorms
Dogs can suffer from many of the same mental and emotional disorders that humans suffer from. One of the most commonly diagnosed issues is anxiety – particularly over loud noises such as those caused during thunder storms. For a loving pet owner, this can be heartbreaking. If your pet runs for cover at the first sign of distant thunder, here are some things you can do to help ease the fear and overcome it, as advised by a Reynoldsburg veterinarian.
Remain Calm – Dogs can sense our emotions, even the most subtle ones, so try to remain as calm as possible before and during a thunderstorm. This calm, positive energy can help to counteract the negative feelings your dog is experiencing.
Provide Distractions – Try to distract your dog during a thunderstorm, if possible, by offering toys and interacting with him. This might help get his mind off the noises outside and ease some of that tension he’s experiencing.
Try Soothing Sounds – For some dogs, the sound of soothing music can help counteract the noises associated with thunderstorms. Try putting soft music on at a medium volume and see if it helps your pet.
Offer a Safe Place – If you notice that your dog tends to retreat to one particular area whenever a storm is brewing, do your best to make that spot as comfortable and secure as possible.
Work with Your Vet – If all else fails, your Reynoldsburg veterinarian may have additional suggestions or might even be able to prescribe anti-anxiety medication or supplements that can help ease your dog’s fears.
There are also a few things you can do to help when it’s not thundering. Try conditioning your dog when the weather is nice by playing audio recordings of thunderstorms. Gradually raise the volume over time until your dog becomes more accustomed to the sounds. And remember never to offer rewards like treats or cuddles in the midst of an anxiety attack, as this only reinforces the behavior you’re trying to overcome.
Canine anxiety can be a challenge for pet owners, but it’s not impossible to overcome. By employing these tips and working closely with your Reynoldsburg veterinarian, you can help your pet live a more balanced, calm and peaceful life, regardless of the weather report.