The Rancho Santa Fe Post

Helpful Pet Owner Tips During Heavy Storms

Even though the most intense phases of this week’s storms are over, the San Diego region is still expected to receive rain during this El Niño season.

To alleviate the strain on pet owners who find their animals stressed during storms, the San Diego Union Tribune reports helpful calming tips, courtesy of the Rancho Coastal Humane Society in Encinitas:

  • “Reassure your pet that everything is fine. Speak in a soothing voice. Remember that your pets can tell when you’re upset.
  • Make sure they have access to their 'safe zones' to hide if they need to. This might be a crate, an open closet, or other room where they have access to food, water, and blankets or beds.
  • Consider a dog anxiety vest such as 'ThunderShirt,' a form-fitting wrap that gives pets the feeling of being hugged. The shirts come in a variety of sizes and are adjustable.
  • If you have to leave, leave them with something that smells like you — a shirt, a towel, maybe a blanket — to reassure frightened or skittish pets.
  • Don’t force them out of a place where they feel safe. If a cat or dog hides under a bed, behind the couch, or in a closet, leave it there if it’s safe. It’s OK to try coaxing it out with treats or affection, but do not force a pet to leave the place it feels safe.”