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Pymble Vet Top Ten Tips to Tackle Your Pet’s Fear of Thunderstorms & Fireworks

By David Loneragan | Dated March 1, 2014

shutterstock_116047882Noise phobia is a common cause of anxiety in our pets. Dogs have extremely sensitive ears and can hear things that us humans can’t. This makes them far more receptive to unpredictable sounds such as storms and fireworks and can cause a lot of distress for your pet.

Follow these TOP 10 tips to help your pet cope with fireworks and thunderstorm fears:

1)      Ensure your pet is safely inside and secure doors, windows and cat flaps.

2)      Allow your dog or cat to hide in a place where they feel safe.  You can further increase this feeling of security by plugging in an Adaptil or Feliway diffuser (available to purchase at Gordon Vet). These diffusers contain synthetic pheromones that pets associate with feeling secure and happy and have been scientifically proven to help settle them in times of distress.

Adaptil is a synthetic copy of the natural appeasing pheromone that puppies are exposed to after birth when feeding from their mother.  When used on any age dog it mimics the properties of this natural reassuring signal, thus reducing anxiety and preventing fear and stress related behaviours.

Feliway is a synthetic copy of the natural feline facial pheromone used by cats use to mark their environment as safe and familiar.  When used in the home it signals to cats that they are in a secure environment.

3)      Speak to your local Pymble vet about spraying these calming pheromones onto a bandana tied around your dog’s neck or on their bedding to give them additional support.

4)      Make sure your dog or cat is microchipped.  If they do escape, frightened animals can easily get lost. It is vital that the council has your up-to-date contact details so that owners can be promptly contacted.

5)      In the few days before fireworks, ensure dogs are taken for a walk earlier in the evening and cats have litter trays.

6)      Close all doors, windows and draw the curtains, play some music and / or have the tv on to help mask the noise of fireworks.

7)      Comfort your pet in a reasonable manner.  Promote calm behaviour by displaying calm behaviour yourself.  Cats prefer to be left to cope on their own. Feeding pets their favourite irresistible treat can be a great way to distract them from being anxious.

8)      Don’t get cross with or punish your pet, regardless of their behaviour, as it will only make them more distressed.

9)      Try not to leave your pet alone when fireworks are going off.  Pets may hurt themselves or cause damage trying to escape when not supervised.

10)  Speak to your Pymble vet about both long term and short term treatment for anxiety and noise phobia. Your vet may also wish to refer you to a qualified veterinary behaviourist.

For a behavior assessment and consultation, contact one of your experienced Pymble vets at Gordon Vet Hospital on (02) 9498 3000 to make an appointment.

Written by David Loneragan

David grew up and still lives locally and has worked at Gordon Vet since 1985. His love of animals and interest in all things veterinary started when he was a young boy spending time with his own pets and working on a country farm. David’s post-graduate studies have been in the fields of medical problems of dogs and cats and diagnostic ultrasound and radiology. In addition, he is interested in dermatology, cardiology and ophthalmology.

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Eve Barratt
Eve Barratt
01:17 04 Aug 20
I took our little girl Coco for her very first vet visit yesterday. Dr Helen gave Coco a thoroughly check-up and provided me with useful information as the first time puppy owner. Coco is now enrolled in the puppy school and will return back for her 2nd vaccine in a couple of week!
Claire Turner
Claire Turner
05:21 19 Jul 20
Care & attention for your furry friends second to none.
Kimba
Kimba
02:50 09 Jul 20
Dr David and the team have provided real care, support and expertise for our furry family members over 25 years. They've also readily taken in injured wildlife. A great team of Vets and nurses - thanks for all you do!
Jayna Hirani
Jayna Hirani
03:43 09 Apr 20
Quality care and advice at every visit. The staff are friendly and informative and genuinely care about your pets. I am 100% confident that my cat and dog always receive the best pet healthcare and as pet parents that's all we want.
Marianne Broeng
Marianne Broeng
23:23 28 Jan 20
Gordon Vet has looked after my golden retriever since she was 9 weeks. Everyone has been amazing and caring with lots of experience. I have been able to ask any questions and always been welcome. Even one day when she stepped on a bee in the evening, they stayed open until we got there and helped her get it out. Thanks to all the staff :-)
Lizzie Wei
Lizzie Wei
00:56 18 Jan 20
We just moved to Gordon couple month ago and need to get my cat vaccinated. We found this hospital through google and I need to say they provide excellent service and very professional! The doctor really knows cat. Highly recommended!
Lara Bisley
Lara Bisley
08:15 27 Nov 19
Exceptional veterinary hospital. I have been taking my dog here for many years and although I now live in the Eastern Suburbs, I still drive across town to see the Vets at Gordon. The staff are highly skilled, compassionate, friendly and helpful. My 9 year old dog has had 2 knee operations (1 on each knee!) and the outcome of these surgeries far exceeded my expectations. I have been incredibly impressed with the care provided during all of our visits. I would highly recommend Gordon Vet Hospital.
Eugenie Goodyer
Eugenie Goodyer
23:22 21 Oct 19
Very friendly staff. Wonderful care for all our animals A++
Jennie Keogh
Jennie Keogh
06:36 21 Oct 19
Fantastic and friendly staff who you can tell really care about your pet. Their follow up service is also very reassuring. I also board my cat with Gordon Vet and I feel very comfortable to know he's in safe and caring hands. I'm so glad I found this clinic.
Newsha Amiri
Newsha Amiri
20:24 03 Oct 19
We took our dog there and Dr. David take care of his skin issues. he was so caring and professional.
Luxe Sydney Mum
Luxe Sydney Mum
06:37 02 Sep 19
Compassionate, caring and highly skilled veterinary surgeons who treat their patients and owners with respect. The nursing and administration staff are efficient and remember their patients by name which is a lovely touch. A lovely vet practice which despite our Golden Retriever Finn’s complex medical history, is always welcoming to him and he never displays any signs of anxiety when attending. Dr Helen is lovely and a firm favourite of ours!
Lihong Xing
Lihong Xing
05:00 05 Nov 18
Highly recommend Dr David, Scott, Helen, and Catherine, I've taken my cat to see all the doctors here.
Jeremy Tarbox
Jeremy Tarbox
22:55 10 Sep 18
We found a stray, agitated dog in front of our house last night. We phoned but got no help from the Council ranger who gave two options: tie him up in front yard overnight or "let him loose, he'll find his own way home" :( So we phoned Gordon Vet: they stayed open a few minutes so we could run him up and he could have a bed and dinner. Thank you Gordon Vet Hospital, hope he gets home soon!!! :)
Vishal Kapoor
Vishal Kapoor
01:52 04 Sep 18
Really amazing staff members. Their systems and processes are also very
Gerry Stevens
Gerry Stevens
11:01 14 Jul 18
Good competant vet. Did what I needed. Staff friendly. Cat's well.
Arezu A
Arezu A
03:20 15 Feb 18
Absolutely love the service here. I switched from other Vets to this Vet as the staff here are quite attentive and really care about your furry baby! I have basically seen most of the Dr's here and all of them so far have been fantastic, friendly and fun to speak with! Easy to locate and enough parking available! 5 Stars indeed!
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