Many dogs deal with sound sensitivity in different ways. Reactions can range from a dog becoming startled or a dog becoming completely paralysed with fright. With the approach of summer, thunderstorms are more likely and there are certain steps you can take to help calm your dog down when he or she hears loud noises.
Unfortunately, these occasions with thunder and fireworks usually happen a couple of times a year. This means that it is likely that both you and your pet will be caught off guard. If this happens it is important that you remain calm. Dogs will pick up a rise in stress or anxiety levels and this may make them feel more stressed and anxious too.
Providing background noise by turning on a television or a CD player can be a good way to distract the dog’s attention away from the source of fright. Play calming music to help your dog feel more relaxed.
Distract your dog by finding his favourite toy. It may be worth keeping an “emergency toy” kept hidden away until these occasions as it will distract the dog and because it is new the toy will keep him stimulated for longer.
If your dog likes to be confined in his own safe place then allow your dog to go there. Making your dog “face their fears” will only increase the anxiety they are feeling. Instead of forcing them to confront it just leave them to their own devices to calm down.
If you feel that your dog’s anxiety is at an unmanageable level it may be worth taking them to the vets to see what kind of treatments that they can provide.