The Fourth of July may be over, but for many skittish dogs, that doesn’t mean the fear of loud noises is in the past. Fireworks may trigger fear in some dogs, but they typically only last during the week of the 4th. Thunderstorms can come and go year-round and may frighten your furry friends. Learn how to comfort your dog during thunderstorms so you can help alleviate some of their fear and anxiety.
If you can be at home during a period of thunderstorms (especially during severe storms), you can provide love and comfort to your companion. Just having you home with them can bring great relief, since they won’t be alone. If you can’t be present, find a friend or family member who wouldn’t mind sitting with your dog until you get home.
Did you know you can give your dog a massage? This can evoke a calming feeling, helping to ease their anxiety and fear during storms. Gently massage your dog, paying close attention to their favorite spots, while talking calmly to the,.
Provide a Safe Place
If your dog has a crate or bed they feel comfortable in, please it in a room where the noise is less noticeable. A familiar sleeping place can provide added comfort to your dog when they are scared or anxious due to thunderstorms. If nobody is available to sit with your dog during the storms, place a shirt you’ve recently worn in their crate or on their bed. Having their owner’s scent close by will help bring them comfort until you arrive home.
Make Your Own Noise
You don’t want to blast loud music to compete with the sound of thunder but playing more calming sounds may help relax your dog. Try playing the radio for some background noise or even play white noise. You may be able to find sounds specifically designed to help comfort dogs online.
Speaking of noise, if you are trying to help your dog overcome the fear, you can utilize thunderstorm sounds. Start playing a video or CD of thunder beginning at a low volume while providing your dog with positive reinforcement and attention. As you turn the volume up gradually, introduce treats, special toys, and lots of play time. Doing this may help lessen the burden thunderstorms have on your dog or may even relieve the fear altogether. Nobody wants their furry companion living in fear, especially during thunderstorms. By learning how to comfort your dog during these times, you can ease their mind and lessen the anxiety and fear the loud noises have on them. Ensure they have a safe place to hide if they need to and utilize your own noises to help combat the sounds of thunder. You may even help them overcome the fear by playing sounds of thunderstorms and interacting with them while it is playing.