Girl comforting her dog and cat.

How to calm a dog or cat during a storm

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Girl comforting her dog and cat.

Thunderstorms can be a stressful time for your pets. Learn about ways to calm a dog or cat during a storm to help prepare your pet for the unexpected.

Every pet is different and may react differently to new sights, sounds and environments. Whether you have a dog or cat, they may be scared and may not be sure what exactly is going on near their home. After all, a thunderstorm can pop up with little to no warning and may startle your best friend.

Provide a safe space for your pets

Your dog or cat needs to know that everything is going to be okay. They may not be sure what to expect from the unexpected sights or sounds. Because of this, a pet-friendly environment can be helpful when a pet is scared. Consider providing calming items for your pet like a bed, crate, blankets and a wrap to help ease your pet's woes with environmental stressors.

In addition, items like white noise, sound machines, fans and relaxing music can help your pet when they're feeling anxious. Further, providing pet enrichment and interactive toys may help distract and soothe your best friend. These tools not only can help ease your pet's stress but also give you a chance to bond with your dog or cat.

Above all, keeping your pet company with cuddles, playtime and companionship is helpful if your dog or cat is experiencing anxiety due to thunderstorms.

Why does your pet have anxiety during storms?

Your pet can have anxiety for a number of reasons. For example, they may be unsure of loud noises, the location of the noise or may wonder what may be coming next. Also, dogs and cats that react extremely to a thunderstorm may suffer from astraphobia.

This pet health condition may include your dog or cat acting out, hiding, scratching or destructive behavior in relation to anxiety with storms. There are a variety of behavioral therapies to help cope with this condition, which may include desensitization.

Further, this may involve positive reinforcement when paired with a stimulus. For any behavioral training, you should always consult the expertise of your veterinarian.

Talk to your veterinarian

Your pets are part of the family. If your dog or cat is experiencing any signs of anxiety or stress, talk to your veterinarian. They can help determine the next best steps for your furry friend and recommend a treatment plan.

For example, your veterinarian may recommend various therapies, prescription medication or alternative remedies to help alleviate your pet's stress and anxiety. Naturally, your pet's veterinarian is the best resource for their health.

Further, your pet health insurance may help your pet get the medical care they may need.

Calming a dog or cat during a thunderstorm may take time

Every pet may react differently to thunderstorms. While some dogs or cats may react well to enrichment, others may need more extensive behavioral training. But by having patience, the expertise and guidance of your veterinarian and the help of your pet's medical insurance, your dog or cat may be on the road to recovery in no time at all.

Check out our collection of pet articles for other tips and advice for your furry friends.

Learn how a pet insurance policy can be there throughout your pet's lifetime.

Terms and conditions do apply. We love informed decisions. See the Trupanion policy for full coverage details.

Pet insurance products are underwritten in the United States by American Pet Insurance Company and ZPIC Insurance Company, 6100-4th Ave. S, Seattle, WA 98108. Administered by Trupanion Managers USA, Inc. (CA license No. 0G22803, NPN 9588590). Terms and conditions apply, see full policy on Trupanion's website for details.

State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company, its subsidiaries and affiliates, neither offer nor are financially responsible for pet insurance products. State Farm is a separate entity and is not affiliated with Trupanion or American Pet Insurance.

The information in this article was obtained from various sources not associated with State Farm® (including State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company and its subsidiaries and affiliates). While we believe it to be reliable and accurate, we do not warrant the accuracy or reliability of the information. State Farm is not responsible for, and does not endorse or approve, either implicitly or explicitly, the content of any third party sites that might be hyperlinked from this page. The information is not intended to replace manuals, instructions or information provided by a manufacturer or the advice of a qualified professional, or to affect coverage under any applicable insurance policy. These suggestions are not a complete list of every loss control measure. State Farm makes no guarantees of results from use of this information.

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