Helping your pet cope with a thunderstorm

If your pet is upset by the loud noises such as a thunderstorm, don’t worry, there’s plenty you can do to help ensure your cat or dog stays relaxed. It’s important that you’re well prepared so make sure you start planning ahead of weather forecasts of thunder.

Ask your vet or qualified animal behaviourist for help

It’s a good idea to talk your pet’s issues through with your local veterinary practice. They will be able to offer advice on your pet’s specific case and recommend a local, qualified behaviourist where relevant. Please note that behaviourists are not regulated so make sure you go to someone your practice recommends.

A girl and a cat - coping with thunderstorms

Build a den

Your pet will need a safe haven where they can go to feel secure while the claps of thunder are overhead. Make sure you allow plenty of time for your pet to get used to their new haven ahead of predicted stormy weather.

There are some important things to consider when building your pet’s den:

  • Location – put the den in your pet’s favourite room where they’d usually spend time.
  • Free Access – allow your pet to access the den at all times.  This way it’s their choice to spend time there. Never force them to go into the den as punishment as this makes their safe place negative.
  • Size – ensure the den is large enough for your pet to comfortably stand up, lie down, stretch out and turn around.

For dogs

  • Smells – fill their crate with familiar smells – used blankets, towels or old clothes are perfect.
  • Treats and toys – reinforce the den as a positive place by giving treats and toys whilst your dog is inside
  • Sound – cover the den with a blanket to muffle the loud noises of the thunderstorm.

For cats

  • Go higher – cats feel more comfortable higher up where they can keep a beady eye on what’s going on.
  • N+1 – make sure you have a hiding place for each cat, plus one extra.  Even a single cat needs two dedicated hiding places.

Hopefully these thunderstorm tips will help you and your pet through noisier weather times!

Did you know…? MiPet Cover pet insurance will pay you for your vets recommended treatment for behavioural illness which could not have been avoided by training or medical intervention.

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