Heartland Animal Hospital Blog
As summer approaches, so do the booms, blasts, and excitement that come along with this commotion-filled season. From thunderstorms to the Fourth of July, pets experience an array of experiences that can bring out their anxiety. Preparing for the noise, hustle and bustle, and celebrations can reduce your pet’s stress and prevent young pets from trauma that could lead to life-long fears. Unsure how you can prep for booms and blasts? Here are our top tips for helping your pet through the summer celebrations and downpours.
How to Help Your Pet Through Thunderstorms & Fireworks
Spring and Summer showers bring big flowers, but they can also spur thunderstorm anxiety. While anxiety from lightning and thunder mostly affects dogs, many cats also experience stress from the booms, too. If your dog is part of the 30% of dogs that are terrified of thunder or you have a scaredy-cat, you can ease their fear.
Recognizing your pet’s signs of stress and having your pet diagnosed is the first step in helping your pet. Then, prepare supplies that can reduce stress.
Signs of Stress and Anxiety in Cats and Dogs
- Dilated pupils and wide eyes
- Excessive grooming
- Refusal to eat
Supplies That Can Aid in Pet Anxiety
Medication and Supplements
Ask us about your pet’s anxiety. During your next appointment, let us know how your pet reacts to storms, and we will decide if your pet is a good candidate for a prescription to help them through the storms. We can also recommend supplements that provide pets with stress relief.
Many pets get a lot of relief from pheromone collars and diffusers. These products activate a part of your pet’s brain that induces a comforting sensation. The most common are Adaptil for dogs and Feliway for cats.
When it comes to stress, many pets gain a sense of calm from wearing an anxiety vest. They work by hugging your pet. This pressure causes your pet’s body to release endorphins that create a calming feeling, similar to how a baby feels when swaddled.
Anxiety vests can be compression vests or weighted vests. Just be sure your pet’s vest fits them properly and doesn’t restrict their movement.
How to Calm Your Pet During Booms and Summer Celebrations
Memorial Day and the Fourth of July create the perfect storm of noise, strangers, and dangers. From hot grills to fireworks, it’s best to keep your pet in a room that’s prepped to keep your pet calm.
Create a Commotion-Free Room
- Choose a room that is far from the noise.
- Prepare the room by closing the blinds and curtains, putting down comfy bedding, playing calming music, and adding a few comfort items. If your pet is going to be in the room for a while, include a water bowl.
- Place a sign on the door letting guests know your pet is inside.
- Walk your dog or play with your cat a few hours before the excitement of fireworks or guests. This will expend some of their nervous energy and reduce the risk of needing to let your dog out.
- Check on your pet from time to time. Remain calm when you enter and exit the room.
For Pets That Do Not Need A Safe Room
If you plan on letting your pet roam the house during your celebrations, be sure you have them microchipped. The blast and chaos of Memorial Day and July Fourth can cause pets to dart off and become disoriented and lost. A microchip can help your pet find their way home should they become lost.
Ask guests to keep the doors closed. This can prevent a great escape. This will reduce the risk of your pet running into your grill and prevent food handouts that could be dangerous.
Celebrate the Beauty of Spring and Summer without Pet Stress
When it comes to keeping your pet calm, safe, and relaxed during summer storms and celebrations, we can certainly help. If you have questions about your pet’s anxiety, please give us a call. We are here to assist you. Whether your pet needs to be microchipped or you’re looking for assistance when it comes to anxiety solutions, your pet’s wellbeing is our top priority. Don’t wait too long. We tend to get an influx of appointments leading up to the Fourth of July.
It is the season of gratitude! With Thanksgiving just around the corner, we would like to take the opportunity to thank you for allowing us to care for your precious pets, and share a few reasons why we are so grateful this holiday season.
The week of October 17-23 is wonder-fur! Why are we so excited? It’s National Veterinary Technician Week! And we love taking the opportunity to celebrate the hardworking veterinary technicians that make our practice the special place that it is. Are you curious about how our vet techs are vital to the care of your pet when you walk through our doors? Here are 3 reasons we love our vet tech and why you should, too!
It crosses every pet owner’s mind: “Is my pet in pain?” And this question comes up more and more as our pets get older. One of the most difficult things about being a pet owner is that our pets cannot verbalize how they’re feeling. This leads us to wonder if our dogs and cats are living their best lives. The last thing you want is your pet struggling with chronic or acute pain, after all. And while your pet will likely never learn to speak human, they often send more subtle signs that they’re in pain. Here are 3 of the most common signs that your pet is in pain: