April showers are something to look forward to, because soon after the soil is cleansed, the flowers and other plants can bloom and close the door to winter. However, when the wind is howling outside and the rain is pounding on the roof, it can sometimes cause your pets some distress. So how can you help them appreciate those gloomy days when listening to the rain can be a prelude to naptime?
The pitter-pattering on the roof might easily lull you to sleep, but how can you rest when your dog is constantly barking or your cat is frightened under the kitchen table? Some pets experience more severe symptoms of storm phobia such as destroying furniture, trembling and trying to escape. By implementing some stress relieving techniques before, during and after a storm, you can help your pet remain calm during these events. In the case of a tornado or hurricane, a cooperative pet is essential when you’re trying to get them out of danger.
Homeopathic stress relievers such as flower essences can take off some of the edge and enable your dog or cat to relax a little more. For example, Bach Flower Remedies can be added to your dog or cat’s water bowl, and the natural and nontoxic essences can work on balancing your pet’s emotions. Also, soft music and a massage can make the animal feel more at ease.
Gradual desensitizing your pet to thunder, lightening, rain and wind is another effective method. First, try playing CDs with thunderstorm sounds while your pet is medicated and slowly increase the volume so your pet gets used to the sound. Options during a storm include distracting your animal with toys or other animal friends that do not have storm phobias.
If you live in Oklahoma or another state that experiences tornados regularly, remember to have an emergency preparedness plan for your family and pets. Animals are intuitive when it comes to bad weather, and the last thing you want is your pet escaping out into the storm and risking injury or death. So store food, water, leashes, harnesses, toys and a carrier or crate in an accessible area of your house. This will ensure a safe place for your pet as well as peace of mind for yourself.