Summer is usually our chance to kick back and relax but the COVID-19 pandemic has caused many of us to cancel plans, parties and vacations. As we search for new ways to make the most of summer, it’s important to be mindful of the health issues that summer can cause for our pets. Whether it’s thunderstorms or a socially-distanced camping trip, routine changes can cause stress or anxiousness in cats and dogs. But, you can follow these simple tips to enjoy a stress-free summer with your best buddy!
1. Keep Pets Calming During Thunderstorms
Between the loud noises and bright lights, Fourth of July fireworks are among the most stressful events of the summer for pets. But, the COVID-19 pandemic has led to the cancellation of July 4th celebrations and given pet parents one less thing to worry about. However, thunderstorms can also be a frequent source of stress for pets and lead to unwanted behaviors like excessive vocalization, inappropriate elimination, pacing, and hiding. Here are a few ways to help your pets remain calm during storms.
- Provide a quiet, comfortable space where they can feel safe.
- Keep windows and curtains closed during storms.
- Distract them by keeping the TV or radio on.
- Give them Composure 30 minutes before the next storm.
2. Protect Your Pets
It’s extremely rare for pets to be infected with COVID-19, but it’s still important to exercise caution and practice social distancing when outside the home. The CDC advises taking the following precautions:
- Don’t let pets interact with people or other animals outside the household.
- Keep cats indoors when possible to prevent them from interacting with other animals or people.
- Walk dogs on a leash, maintaining at least 6 feet from other people and animals.
- Avoid dog parks or public places where a large number of people and dogs gather.
3. Keep Pets Indoors
Pets are like family so it’s hard to imagine them stuck indoors while we’re out and about this summer. But it also may be in their best interest. Whether it’s a long hike or camping trip, keeping them indoors is often the safest place for your four-legged friend. That way, your cat or dog won’t be exposed to environmental stressors that could cause them to react poorly. It will also limit their exposure to the elements, which leads us to our next tip…
4. Avoid the Heat
Just like us, pets can overheat from strenuous exercise and long days outdoors. Symptoms of overheating typically include excessive panting or difficulty breathing. Keep your pet calm and cool by providing access to shade and fresh water, taking walks during cooler periods and never leaving them alone in a parked car.
It’s also important to keep your pet off hot surfaces like pavement or sand that can burn your pet’s paws. You may want to apply a natural wax to their paws to protect them from prolonged exposure to hot surfaces throughout the summer.
5. Try Calming Supplements
Can’t find the trick that will actually keep your cat or dog calm? Calming supplements like Composure can help your pet relax during thunderstorms, outdoor adventures and vet or grooming visits. Composure is a fast-acting calming supplement that’s clinically shown to work within 30 minutes and last up to 4 hours.* It’s also safe to double or even triple the amount during times of heightened stress. Before your next adventure, give your pet Composure to support calm behavior no matter what summer has in store for you!
*CanCog Technologies Study “Assessment of Anxiolytic Properties of a Novel Compound in Beagle Dogs with a Noise-Induced Model of Fear and Anxiety”