STORM SEASON is with us. For many of our pets - both dogs and cats - this can be a frightening and anxious time. Storm events ( and other noise events) can be a dilemma for both the pets and their owners. There are training and therapeutic stratagies to target these anxieties. Please refer to a useful generalised article "Frightful Noises"on our site - see link below.
Current treatments to tackle these anxiety problems include :
- Providing a safe and secure environment for your pet, especially if the pet may be "home alone" for some period. Eg A special room, denning type area, a crate (if pet is crate trained). This area would best be shielded from the sound and light effects of a storm.
- The application of a "thunder shirt" to your pet. This acts like a tight hugging security blanket. One can also try a tight tee-shirt or something similar.
- The use of the pheromone products marketed under the ADAPTOL brand. These can be provided as room diffusers, sprays or collars for both dogs and FELIWAY products for cats.
- The use of prescription medication dispensed by your veterinarian. There are a few options regards medication and these should be discussed with the veterinarian. Your pet will also need a check-up before first being placed on such medication.
- Re-training your pet through long term de-sensitization to storm and noise phobias eg "Storm CD's".
For treating your pet when an iminent event (storm, fireworks etc) is due then all the short term strategies need to be put in place before the pet's anxiety levels are aroused. This may mean setting up or medicating nearly 2 hours earlier. Of course the biggest dilemmas are when no one is home at these times. You may then have to medicate earlier, and ensure the pet's environment is extremely secure and utilise the use of thunder shirts and Adaptol Collars.
Click here to read more about storm phobia on this website.
Other Resource Sites: www.allpetseducationandtraining.com.au
Association of Professional Dog Trainers.
RSPCA Animal Training