Keeping pets calm in storms and at Halloween: podcast from Newstalk’s Pat Kenny Show

Is your dog a nervous nellie when there are high winds or fireworks outside? Listen to the podcast below for tips on how to help.

Tips to help pets stay calm and comfortable in storms and at Halloween

  1. Provide a den or a hiding place where your pet feel safe. Set up a comfortable bed for your pet, with old unwashed sweatshirts and other soft clothing to give your pet a sense of your reassuring presence.
  2. Keep your pet indoors with the doors and windows closed, with a radio on, playing classical music.
  3. Give your dog something to do, such as chewing a frozen food-stuffed dog toy such as a Kong or K9 Connectable.
  4. Ensure that all pets carry ID tags as well as being microchipped, in case they do escape and run off.
  5. Try not to over-indulge pets when they display behaviour such as panting, shaking or whining while looking at you. Pets can start to do this as a way of getting attention from their owners. So you need to try to carry on with normal behaviour around the house, while not been too hard hearted. It can be a difficult balance to maintain.
  6. Plug in diffusers, sprays and collars containing pheromones or herbal vapour can help to relieve anxiety.
  7.  If your dog is very distressed. ask your vet about medication to help in the short term.
  8. In the long term, noise desensitisation can be the best way to help dogs get used to loud sounds. Talk to your vet or animal behaviourist about the best way to do this.

Questions from listeners about their pets

  • I’m at my wits end with my two year old dog he is very loving and wonderful he is the baby of the house. The problem is he won’t stay at home alone he cries and barks all the time so much so the neighbors complained so we put him in doggie day care which is costing us a fortune. Could Pete please give us any tips for resolving this.  Joanne Ryan
  • New Shih Tzu puppy . Trying to train her . Destroying the house . Have mats etc. But she only goes on it sometimes and we reward her for same but not consistent ? Any help would be appreciated. Henry in Longford
  • Our new kitten is settling in well to our house, he caught a mouse the other day, I cannot find the mouse, would it be a case the kitten has hid the mouse or has he eaten it ?
  • Following your advice two years ago I’m finally about to pick up my first dog! A 12 week old Italian Greyhound (from a reputable breeder) as they are ideal for apartment dwellers. ( My office is pet friendly too). I have two questions:
    There’s lots of advice on early puppy training etc but what should I bring with me when I collect the puppy & how should I manage the changeover and the very first night. (I’ve already met the puppy a few times and brought her a toy with my scent to take away with me when we leave as it will also have her siblings & mother’s scent).
    Secondly, I’m going to crate train her and use the balcony for her to relieve herself. I’ll be too high up in the building to make it out in time! I don’t have room for a wire cage as well as a travel kennel and I also want her to get used to a travel kennel. Can I use a travel kennel as her ‘home’ and for toilet training? Obviously I’ll buy a bigger one when she grows. Thanks! Ross,
  • My beloved 8 year old dog has been on URILIN for three years. She has suddenly started wetting the bed at night even if I take her out twice in the night. Is there any other treatment/medication available to her. Thanks so much. Bunny.
  • My one year old Irish terrier was hit by a motorbike 2 weeks ago. He suffered a dislocated shoulder and has been unable to use his right front paw since. My vet says it is nerve damage and it may recover but he needs time and rest; he has been in his crate since. Is there anything I can do for him?
  • Our dog found a hedgehog and ended up pulling out a clump of spines. We cleaned him with mild disinfection and have been able to feed him and keep him warm. My question are there any places in Kerry or nearby that would take a wild hedgehog for aftercare and re release. It is too risky to release him near us again. He seems in good health but it’s time we left him go again. Any advice appreciated. Eoghan.
  • Our dog was house trained ,we went on holidays during summer for 2 weeks and he went to kennels…..he now pees everywhere and doesn’t seem to want to learn.
  • How poisonous are yew tree berries for dogs? Lots in our garden from our neighbours tree. Our puppy had eaten a few but I’m afraid he’ll get sick

To listen to the answers, click on the podcast button below

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