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For many dogs, the rumble of thunder and the flash of lightning are far from exciting. Instead, they lead to shaking, whining, and hiding under the bed. The sudden loud noises and changes in atmospheric pressure can be confusing and scary for our canine companions. Thankfully, there are a variety of products available to help manage your dog’s fear of thunderstorms. This article will explore the best thunderstorm anxiety relief products for dogs, including anxiety wraps, calming diffusers, and noise-canceling headphones, to help your pet feel more secure and less stressed during these natural events.
#1 – The Original Happy Hoodie for Dogs & Cats – Since 2008 – The Grooming and Force Drying Miracle Tool for Anxiety Relief & Calming Dogs (Large, Pink)
The Original Happy Hoodie for Dogs & Cats is a grooming tool designed to calm and protect dogs during high-pressure force drying. It provides noise reduction by gently compressing the ear canals and has been recommended by vets for preventing or healing hematomas and providing ear protection during activities such as swimming or bath time. Made in the USA, the Happy Hoodie is durable, easy to use and clean, and can also be used as a natural calming remedy for dogs in conjunction with other anxiety-relief products.
#2 – iHeartDogs Hemp Calming Chews for Dogs – Dog Anxiety Relief Bites with Hemp – Bacon Flavored Dog Calming Treats for Anxiety and Stress
The iHeartDogs Hemp Calming Chews for Dogs are soft chews infused with hemp that aim to alleviate anxiety and stress in dogs. These bacon-flavored treats are designed to provide a sense of calm and also promote natural joint mobility. The product is third-party tested and approved by the Clean Label Project, ensuring a reliable and trusted choice for dog owners.
#3 – Zesty Paws Calming Chews for Dogs – Composure & Relaxation for Everyday Stress & Separation – with Ashwagandha, Organic Chamomile, L-Theanine & L-Tryptophan – Turkey – 90 Count
Zesty Paws Calming Chews for Dogs are chewable supplements designed to help dogs with normal nervous or anxious behaviors feel calm and comfortable. They contain organic ingredients such as Ashwagandha and Organic Chamomile, as well as Suntheanine which promotes relaxation without causing drowsiness. These chews may also help with hyperactive behavior and soothe anxieties associated with thunderstorms, fireworks, car rides, or separation anxiety. The formula includes a blend of proven ingredients such as Organic Ginger Root, L-Tryptophan, Organic Passionflower, and Valerian Root to maintain calmness and help dogs cope with external stresses.
#4 – Thundershirt Dog Anxiety Treatment – Gray (Medium)
The Thundershirt Dog Anxiety Treatment is a patented design that applies gentle and constant pressure to help calm dogs experiencing anxiety, fear, or over-excitement. It is effective in calming dogs during fireworks, thunderstorms, separation, travel, vet visits, and more. The product is recommended by veterinarians and trainers and is backed by scientific studies conducted by Dr. Temple Grandin and other behavior scientists. Additionally, the Thundershirt is lightweight, machine-washable, and suitable for dogs of all ages.
#5 – HomeoPet Fireworks, 15 Milliliters, Relieves Pets from Anxiety Caused by Loud Noises
HomeoPet Fireworks is a 15-milliliter product designed to relieve pets suffering from anxiety caused by loud noises. Formerly known as Anxiety TFLN, it offers temporary relief from fears of fireworks, gunshots, and other loud sounds. Suitable for all pets, including cats, dogs, and birds, as well as pregnant animals and babies, this all-natural anxiety medicine is non-sedating and does not contain harsh chemicals. It has been formulated to provide fast relief within 15 to 20 minutes from symptoms such as hiding, barking, pacing, panting, attention-seeking, drooling, and trembling.
#6 – ThunderWunders Hemp Dog Calming Chews | Vet Recommended for Situational Anxiety | Fireworks, Thunderstorms, Travel & More | Made with Hemp Seed, Thiamine, L-Tryptophan, Melatonin & Ginger (60 Count)
The ThunderWunders Hemp Dog Calming Chews are a vet-recommended solution for situational anxiety in dogs. They are designed to reduce stress in various stressful situations such as traveling, fireworks, thunderstorms, vet visits, and grooming. The chews contain a combination of calming ingredients like hemp seed, thiamine, L-tryptophan, melatonin, and ginger to promote rest and relaxation in dogs. The product also comes with a 100% moneyback guarantee, ensuring customer satisfaction.
#7 – Herbsmith July Third – Canine Calming Chews – Calming Herbs for Dogs – Anxiety Supplements for Dogs – 30ct Small Chews
Herbsmith July Third – Canine Calming Chews are a natural and fast-acting solution for dog anxiety. These chewable treats promote relaxation and can be used for situations such as trips to the groomer or vet, and during fireworks or long car rides. The formula is made with safe and gentle herbs, B vitamins, and amino acids, and is recommended by veterinarians. Developed by a holistic veterinarian with over 30 years of experience, these calming chews are made in the USA.
#8 – ThunderEase Dog Calming Pheromone Diffuser Kit | Powered by ADAPTIL | Vet Recommended to Relieve Separation Anxiety, Stress Barking & Chewing, and Fear of Fireworks & Thunderstorms (30 Day Supply)
The ThunderEase Dog Calming Pheromone Diffuser Kit is a product designed to help dogs with separation anxiety, stress barking, chewing, fear of fireworks and thunderstorms, and other anxiety-related behaviors. The kit is powered by ADAPTIL, a brand recommended by veterinarians and backed by scientific research. The diffuser releases calming pheromones to make dogs feel safer, calmer, and less stressed, without the need for drugs. It has been proven to be over 90% effective in reducing anxiety and unwanted behavior in dogs.
What Are the Best Products to Help My Dog’s Fear of Thunderstorms?
Fear of thunderstorms is common in dogs due to the loud, unpredictable noises and changes in atmospheric pressure. Here are some effective products to help your dog navigate thunderstorm anxiety:
- Anxiety Wraps or Vests: These garments, like the popular ThunderShirt, exert a gentle, consistent pressure on the dog’s body, similar to a comforting hug. This can help soothe your dog and reduce anxiety.
- Noise-Cancelling Headphones for Dogs: Products like Mutt Muffs reduce the noise level, helping to dampen the sounds of thunder.
- Calming Diffusers and Sprays: These devices release synthetic pheromones or calming essential oils into the environment to help soothe anxious dogs. Adaptil is a popular brand.
- Calming Treats and Supplements: Some treats and supplements are designed to help reduce anxiety in dogs. They often contain natural ingredients like chamomile, valerian root, and L-Theanine. Always consult with your vet before introducing new supplements.
- Comforting Toys: Some dogs find comfort in toys, especially ones that have a familiar or soothing scent. Items like the Smart Pet Love Snuggle Puppy can be beneficial.
- Safe Spaces: A specially designed dog bed or crate cover can create a safe, den-like space for your dog to retreat to during thunderstorms.
- Puzzle Toys and Distractions: Keeping your dog’s mind occupied can help them focus less on the storm. Puzzle toys filled with their favorite treats can be a great distraction.
Remember that every dog is different, and it may take some trial and error to find the best solution for your furry friend’s thunderstorm fear. Always consult with your veterinarian or a pet behaviorist for personalized advice.
Related: The 10 Best Anti-Anxiety Dog Beds
What Are Some Strategies for Alleviating My Dog’s Fear of Thunderstorms?
Helping a dog manage their fear of thunderstorms often involves a combination of preparation, behavior modification, and the use of certain calming products. Here are some strategies you can use:
- Create a Safe Space: Dogs naturally seek a safe, enclosed space when they feel scared. Create a dedicated area in your home where your dog can retreat during a storm. This could be a covered crate, a closet, or a room with the curtains drawn and soothing music playing.
- Desensitization and Counter-Conditioning: Gradually expose your dog to recordings of thunder sounds at a low volume, pairing the sounds with positive experiences such as treats or playtime. Over time, slowly increase the volume as your dog becomes more comfortable.
- Calming Products: Calming wraps or vests, noise-cancelling headphones for dogs, calming diffusers and sprays, and soothing toys can help to manage your dog’s anxiety during thunderstorms.
- Distraction: Engage your dog in their favorite activities during the storm. This might be playing fetch, working on a puzzle toy, or enjoying a special treat.
- Calming Supplements or Medications: Some dogs may benefit from calming supplements or even prescription anti-anxiety medications. Always consult with your vet before starting any new supplement or medication regimen.
- Professional Help: If your dog’s fear of thunderstorms is severe, you may want to consider seeking the help of a professional dog trainer or a veterinary behaviorist. They can provide a personalized training program to help your dog better cope with their fear.
Remember, it’s important for you to remain calm and patient during thunderstorms. Dogs pick up on our emotions, so if they sense that you’re anxious, it could make their fear worse. By implementing these strategies and providing lots of love and reassurance, you can help your dog manage their fear of thunderstorms.
Frequently Asked Questions About Thunderstorm Anxiety Relief Products for Dogs
- Why do dogs get anxious during thunderstorms? Dogs may become anxious during thunderstorms due to the loud and unpredictable noises, the sudden flashes of light, and changes in barometric pressure. Dogs have highly sensitive hearing and can become frightened by sounds that humans might not even notice.
- What is a thunder vest and how does it work? A thunder vest or anxiety wrap is a garment that fits snugly around your dog’s torso and exerts a gentle, constant pressure. This has a calming effect similar to swaddling a baby, which can help to reduce anxiety and fear.
- Are there any calming treats that can help my dog during thunderstorms? Yes, there are calming treats and supplements available that can help reduce anxiety in dogs. These often contain ingredients like chamomile, valerian root, and L-Theanine. However, you should always consult your vet before introducing a new supplement or treat.
- What are noise-cancelling headphones for dogs and do they really work? Noise-cancelling headphones for dogs, such as Mutt Muffs, are designed to reduce the level of noise that reaches your dog’s ears, which can help to alleviate anxiety caused by loud thunder. They can be particularly useful for dogs with extreme sensitivity to noise.
- What is a calming diffuser and how can it help my dog during thunderstorms? Calming diffusers work by releasing synthetic pheromones or calming essential oils into the air. These pheromones or scents can help to soothe your dog’s anxiety and create a more relaxed environment during a thunderstorm.
- Can I use human anxiety medication for my dog? You should never give your dog human medication without consulting a vet, as it can be dangerous or even fatal. If you believe your dog could benefit from medication, discuss this with your vet, who can prescribe appropriate dog-safe medication if necessary.
- How can I create a safe space for my dog during thunderstorms? A safe space can be a quiet, dimly lit room, a covered crate, or even a closet. You can make this space comforting by adding your dog’s favorite toys, a comforting bed, and a piece of your clothing for your scent.
- Are there any techniques I can use to help my dog get used to the sound of thunder? Desensitization techniques can be effective. You can play recordings of thunder sounds at a low volume, gradually increasing the volume over time as your dog becomes less anxious. Always pair the sounds with positive experiences, such as treats or playtime.
- My dog’s fear of thunderstorms seems severe. What should I do? If your dog’s fear is severe or is affecting their quality of life, consult with a professional. A veterinary behaviorist or experienced trainer can provide personalized advice and strategies to help manage your dog’s fear of thunderstorms.
- Does my behavior affect my dog’s anxiety during thunderstorms? Absolutely. Dogs are very attuned to their owners’ emotions. If you’re calm and relaxed, this can help your dog to be less anxious. Always comfort and reassure your dog during thunderstorms but avoid overly fussing over them, which could reinforce their anxious behavior.
Conclusion: Best Thunderstorm Anxiety Relief Products for Dogs
Finding the right product to alleviate your dog’s fear of thunderstorms can make a significant difference in their quality of life – and yours. By providing them with tools to manage their anxiety, you can help your pet navigate stormy weather more calmly. While these products can be beneficial, it’s important to remember that every dog is unique, and what works for one might not work for another. It may require some trial and error to find the most effective solution. Always consult with your vet or a pet behaviorist if your dog’s anxiety is severe or persistent. Together, you can help your furry friend weather any storm with confidence and calm.