Storms can be a major anxiety trigger for tons of dogs. It can be hard to figure out the correct way to comfort your dogs from the start of that first thunderclap. Your dog may start shaking, panting, running around frantically, or clinging to you tightly when they are sensing a storm approaching. In a lot of cases your dog’s usual cool and collected demeanor transitions into full-on panic mode which can be hard to watch and keep under control. This is especially difficult when you live in a climate that is prone to storming, and you may feel helpless in calming your dog down on a daily basis. Although this type of anxiety can be quite challenging to handle if your dog is severely affected by stormy weather, there are certain things you can do to make your dog’s quality of life just a little bit better during these ruff times. Some ideas to bring down their anxiety level are:
- Thunder Jackets
Sometimes your dog just needs a hug. Thunder jackets are basically designed to apply pressure evenly all over their bodies so it feels like they’re being swaddled. This can be a good solution if you’re not always present to comfort your dog in a storm and you’re worried about them being all alone. It has been known to greatly improve anxiety levels in those panicky moments. Although Thunder Jackets can be a little pricey, you could mimic the same effect by putting your dog in a tight-fitting shirt or wrapping them in a blanket. It is important that your dog senses being safe and protected, and the feeling of being hugged closely is really comforting for them.
- Make a quiet little area
If you want to go all out, you can close off space in your house that is designated for calming them down. It is important to close the blinds so that your dog is less aware of the storming occurring outside. Make sure it is a dark and comfy room so your dog can really relax. Dogs often try to seek out a space like this by going underneath beds and tables, so it is important to cut them off from seeing the lightning or wind. This concept could work by just covering your dog with a blanket as well.
- Distract them with other noises
Something that can really benefit a dog is if their attention is diverted from thunder and rain to other sounds. You can play some soft music for them like jazz or just anything that will compete with the outside noise. People often like to play some nature sounds or white noise to drown out the storm. Even watching TV can be a great distraction that leaves your dog unaware of what’s truly happening. Basically, anything you can do to entertain your dog’s sensitive ears will help them out.
It is hard to know exactly the right method of treating your dog’s anxiety, especially because it can be hard to communicate with them when you don’t speak the same language. Trying out new approaches will ultimately help your dog feel safer when they’re in that crazy state of confusion.