Many pet parents dread New Year’s Eve and July 4th because their pets struggle with the blasts and booms of fireworks. Who can blame them? When your furry best friend cowers under the bed, shaking and drooling, it’s impossible to not feel for them. At least when it comes to Independence Day and a new year, pet parents can predict the chaos and prepare accordingly.
It’s often those stray fireworks in the days before and after the celebrations that catch people and pets off guard. There are also the dramatic summer thunderstorms that send our dogs and cats scurrying beneath the blankets.
What’s a pet parent to do? Keep reading to learn about your pet’s anxieties and how you can help them manage their fear.
Recognizing Noise Phobia in Pets
As the name implies, noise phobia is a fear of loud, unexpected noises. Many dogs and cats react to loud sounds with a “flight” reaction. It makes sense for them to do this, as hiding from scary noises in nature would keep them protected from danger.
Even though they’re safe, sound, and well-provided for in your home, many of our pets just can’t shake their fear. Intense fear of noise can trigger long-lasting anxiety, stress, and discomfort.
What do the signs of noise anxiety look like?
- Excessive panting
- Unfocused staring
- Shaking and trembling
- Uncontrollably drooling
- Urinating or defecating
- Whimpering, howling, and other vocalizations
- Trying to escape the house
What To Do When Your Pets Are Afraid of Loud Noises
Ignoring the problem and hoping it will go away doesn’t work. Writing off the fear as natural is detrimental since your pet is experiencing mental distress. When anxiety is left untreated, pets can develop the habit of waiting in fear of the next blast. This trepidation paralyzes them and becomes habitual, with each episode lasting longer and longer.
We want you to know that you’re not in it alone in helping your pet. Noise phobia is a common condition that we can treat and provide you with guidance for ways you can help your pet feel better.
Helping your pet takes time, preparation, and practice. Some ways to comfort your pet and provide a relaxing environment during storms include:
- Playing soundtracks designed to relax dogs and cats so they can better cope with noise fear. Here is one that many pet parents have commented on with stories of success.
- Create a sanctuary for your pet to relax in. Don’t wait until the first storm arrives. Introduce your pet to their retreat several times before they are stressed. Outfit your room with pillows, your pet’s bed, comfort items, treats, closed blinds, soft lighting, and calming music.
- Pheromone diffusers ignite positive feelings for pets. Adaptil for dogs and Feliway for cats are both designed to trigger feel-good pheromone receptors in your pet’s brain that are connected with feeling relaxed and safe.
- Compression vests like the Thundershirt work well for a lot of dogs.
- We can also work with you to decide if a prescription for anxiety is the right choice for your pet.
A cacophony outside isn’t the only cause of unease: 88% of dogs that experience noise fear also experience separation anxiety. If your dog is one of them, ask us about the Calmer Canine Assisi Loop.
Don’t Let the Booms and Blasts Plague Your Pet with Fear
Help your pet regain control and better cope with noise fear. We’re committed to helping your pet live their best life: fear-free, confident, healthy, and as happy as can be. If you’re ready to help your pet find relief, give us a call to schedule your next appointment.
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