Does your dog run and hide with the first rumble of thunder during a storm? Your furry friend may be experiencing canine noise aversion – a form of anxiety that is triggered by loud noises such as thunder, fireworks, and gunshots.
While not uncommon, this behavior can lead to destructive tendencies if not addressed early on. Some dogs get so scared that they run off or dig at common household objects like carpeting or furniture to help ease their anxiety.
Why do dogs get scared during storms?
Some research shows that dogs can sense the drop in barometric pressure that comes with changes in weather. This can sometimes trigger their anxiety even before any thunder can be heard. It has been said that certain breeds are more predisposed to storm anxiety, especially herding breeds like Border Collies.
What are signs that a dog is experiencing anxiety?
When a dogs’ ears are pulled back and their tail is down, this can often be the first indication that they feel nervous. If they hide when they hear loud noises or go to a place in the home that they normally do not such as a bathtub or behind a piece of furniture, this could also mean that they don’t feel comfortable.
What can be done to ease your pet’s anxiety?
Some dog-owners use weighted vests to help ease their dog’s nerves during storms. The gentle pressure is said to have a calming affect like that of a hug. If your dog tends to seek out a hiding place, help by creating a comfortable place they can go when they are anxious. Provide soft pillows or blankets, their favorite toy, or a special treat. Sometimes even turning on some white noise can help neutralize the sounds they hear. If all else fails, visit your veterinarian for advice. They may recommend anxiety medication or CBD oil for pets to help keep them calm when needed.