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What is noise phobia on dogs & cats?

At a glance

Help your dog deal with noises like thunderstoms and fireworks

What is Noise Phobia on Dogs & Cats?

The following information will help you to understand noise phobias and give you advice on helping your dog to overcome their fears.

What is noise phobia and why does it develop?

Noise phobia is the irrational fear of loud noises due to the perception that the noise is dangerous. When feeling threatened, fear is normal, but when this fear leads to a phobia of everyday things and your dog can’t cope, it’s time to take action.

Noise phobias can be caused by a lack of exposure to a sound as a puppy, traumatic interaction with a noise during the early stages of life or repetitive exposure leading to sensitisation.

Noises that are most commonly associated with a phobia in dogs include thunderstorms, fireworks, vacuum cleaners, sirens and lawn mowers.

Signs of anxiety

When dogs are scared they have a flee, fight, freeze or fidget response that can cause the following changes in their body and behaviour:

How to manage noise phobias

Be prepared

Dogs with a phobia don’t understand that storms pass and fireworks end – for them it’s a frightening experience associated with shrill winds, loud explosions and bright flashes. Although you can anticipate some loud noises, others may catch you and your pet by surprise, so here are some tips to help you stay prepared:


Anticipated noises

Preparing for anticipated noises from thunderstorms, fireworks and parties is all about planning ahead and staying calm at all times. Here are some suggestions:

If you’re going to be out

Here are some additional things to consider if you won’t be home during a storm or fireworks:

Things to avoid

What can you do to help your pet?

Vets can prescribe anti-anxiety or sedative medication to help some dogs that are extremely fearful to cope with noise phobia. Alternatively, talk to your vet about pet massage, Thunder Shirts® and pheromone calming collars and infusers.

Desensitisation

For phobias of domestic objects like lawn mowers or vacuum cleaners, the first step is to simply show your dog the object without turning it on – if there’s no reaction then reward with a treat and slowly work up to using the object around them.

Until they’ve been desensitised to a comfortable level, your dog should be kept away from these objects in everyday action, as their fear will undo the desensitisation that has begun.

Depending on the severity of your dog’s phobia, CDs of the frightening noise may assist in desensitising your pet by exposing them to sounds at low levels that they can tolerate without fear.

This technique alone will not fix the problem but can be useful in conjunction with other strategies. Ask your vet or veterinary behaviourist about desensitising CDs or contact us directly for more information.

Got a pet health question?

If you have a question on anything from parasites to pet health, ask us we don't bite!

Call The Advantage Pet Care Line on 1800 678 368.

Advantix for Dogs

Just one Paralysis tick bite can prove fatal. Protect them against Paralysis ticks and biting insects before they bite with Advantix for dogs.
Treats
Fleas , Ticks

Separation Anxiety

Ensure your pet isn’t anxious when you leave them alone.

- ↓ -
Got a pet health question?

If you have a question on anything from parasites to pet health, ask us we don't bite!

Call The Advantage Pet Care Line on 1800 678 368.

Advantix for Dogs

Just one Paralysis tick bite can prove fatal. Protect them against Paralysis ticks and biting insects before they bite with Advantix for dogs. Treats
Fleas , Ticks

Separation Anxiety

- ↓ -

Ensure your pet isn’t anxious when you leave them alone.