Operation Kindness Blog

Keeping your pets safe and relaxed during storms

cat in crate

Whether it’s heavy rain, thunderstorms, tornadoes or hailstorms, severe weather can be hard for our pets to adjust to. Just like it is important to prepare your family, belongings and home to stay safe during upcoming storms, you can take action to prepare your pet as well!

Before a storm begins

We don’t always have a lot of warning before severe weather hits, but taking the following precautions ahead of time, when possible, can make a huge difference in your pet’s safety and comfort.

  • Make sure your pets have appropriately fitting collars with up-to-date ID tags. Loud noises and strong winds can spook even then the calmest of pets. It is critical that your pet can be quickly identified and returned to you should they get loose during a storm.
  • Keep an eye on the forecast and give your pet a chance to go outside before the storm begins. Your pets will feel better and so will you if you can get potty time out of the way when it’s still safe and dry out!
  • Set up a safe, comfortable space for your pet to take refuge in. Many pets like to hide during storms. Setting up a cozy crate in a dark room for your dog or leaving access to a safe closest for your cat can help them feel safer.

During a storm

Once a storm begins, it’s important to keep your pet supervised and as calm as possible! Here are a few safety tips to follow.

  • Keep your pets safely confined indoors. We do not recommend leaving pets outside unsupervised and urge limiting the amount of time outside as much as possible.
  • Crate your pet if you need to shelter in a hallway or bathroom. Keeping your pet in their crate while you shelter from a storm can help ensure you know where they are and that they are safe!
  • Play calming music or white noise to help drown out the sound of the storm. Try turning on the television or playing music from a playlist of calming music for pets!
  • Distract your pet with treats and chews. Giving your dog a special stuffed Kong toy or pulling out your cat’s favorite treats can help keep their focus off the weather.

After a storm passes

Even though a storm may have passed, it’s still important to follow these tips to ensure your pets safety!

  • Check your yard/home/surroundings for damage that may harm your pet. Severe weather can cause damage quickly. Before letting your pet out into the yard, make sure your fence is intact and your yard is clear of any debris.
  • Consult your veterinarian if your pet seemed very anxious. We recommend taking to your vet if you feel your pet really struggles with storm anxiety. Behavioral medication could be a good fit to better support your pet during severe weather.

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