Dogs are always afraid of storms: it is a phenomenon with dangerous implications, since thunderstorms can cause a dog to run away suddenly, instinctively and in search of shelter. Our best friends cannot provide a logical explanation for this phenomenon and react as nature commands.
What can we do about this “dog-weather” combination? Let’s look at some advice that is both easy to implement, and at no cost, further strengthening the bond between us and our dog!
Fear of storms: what is the cause?
As we have said, dogs are afraid of thunderstorms due to the loud roars of thunder, the vibrations that these cause, the sudden flashes. However, we can also list other elements from the life and past of our best friend that give us greater understanding of the dog´s fright:
- Traumatic experiences in the past with thunderstorms;
- A mother who conveyed fear of such events to the puppy;
- Living conditions that make our friend feel poorly protected (for example, living outside without being able to enter the house, especially in these moments).
How to help a frightened dog cope with the fear of thunderstorms
A dog sensitive to atmospheric phenomena, especially noisy ones, must always be helped. There are some simple gestures that can help us console him, make him feel safe and, above all, prevent worry and fear from turning into a genuine phobia:
- Give the dog a quiet place: the dog must be able to find a shelter inside the house where it feels safe. For example, under the bed, under the kitchen table, in his kennel.
- Call the dog when the storm starts, and let it return: in this way we prevent it from being surprised by the event and therefore running away, finding himself in very dangerous situations.
- We protect the dog´s sensitive hearing: just leave the radio or TV on, play a little music.
- Password: distraction. That’s right: during the storm, there’s nothing better than a game! Always, however, away from windows or doors with glass, which amplify the loud noise of thunder.
- Give it a blanket and pillow: softness is a great consolation for our four-legged friend. Also, the blanket is a great hiding place!
Dog and thunderstorm: what not to do
There are not only “things to do”, but also “things not to do”, signals and gestures that our dog could misunderstand, moving away from us, thinking about making mistakes and risking being unjustly punished. Here’s a small list:
- Avoid pampering the dog: or rather, don´t do it excessively. If we spoil our furry friend too much, we make him feel even more afraid, since he will notice our anxious behaviour: this means that the dog won´t feel safe with us, or trust us. Better to leave it in peace and quiet, especially if it wants to be alone, making sure that it is fine, with some cuddles and nice words.
- Do not scold the dog: in addition to having to manage its great fear of thunderstorms and loud noises, it will also have to deal with the fact that it does not know why we are scolding it, whilst seeking security and safety from us.
The behaviour of a dog frightened by storms
Our dog can adopt two types of behaviour: stay as close as possible to us, or go to a place that he considers safe. The motivation? It´s very simple!
- If it always stays by your side, walking right next to your leg, it means that you are its “group”: in this case, never send it away or drive it away. Simply leave it next to you, without giving it too much attention, too much pampering or even taking it in your arms. Behave normally until the dog moves away from you.
- If it finds a safe haven in the house, it means that the environment around it makes it feel safe and peaceful. It is comfortable living with you, and this is a sign of a never-ending friendship!
What if the dog always runs away during thunderstorms?
In this case, you will need a good GPS device for dogs: Kippy can locate your pet at any time, connecting to the telephone network with the SIM already included in the device, transmitting its location directly to your smartphone, tablet or PC so that you can reach it wherever it is.
The dedicated app allows you to keep track of your pet so that you always know where it is, also taking advantage of geofence virtual fence features: you will be alerted as soon as your four-legged friend leaves his safe area, so you always know where it is, even when it has managed to get out. In addition, the new Kippy Vita has an Activity Tracker, which allows you to monitor all the movement parameters of your four-legged friend in real time, providing you with all information necessary for his well-being, even during those moments characterised by the fear of the storm.