6-year-old Chilli runs for cover as stormy weather hits. Picture: Nigel Hallett
6-year-old Chilli runs for cover as stormy weather hits. Picture: Nigel Hallett

Keep your pets calm before the storm

PET owners are being urged to make sure their pets have identification, with storms predicted to continue across Bundaberg and surrounds.

The RSPCA Queensland call centre has noticed a sharp increase in lost and found calls this year.

In January, more than 3000 calls were received and in February there has already been more than 1000.

Community relations officer for RSPCA Queensland Michael Beatty said the rise in calls was cause for concern.

“After every storm, we end up with reports of lost, found and traumatised animals, many without any identification,” said Mr Beatty.

“Some dogs, in particular, suffer from what we call storm or firework phobia.

“Often they will sense the storm coming long before humans can, and the noise of the thunder absolutely terrifies them.

“They then try to escape from areas they normally wouldn’t think of leaving.”

While storms continue, Mr Beatty said the RSPCA advised people to keep their animals in a safe and secure environment when leaving them home alone.

“If you know they suffer from storm phobia it’s ideally best to keep them inside,” he said.

“You can also leave a radio on as that will help as well.”

The RSPCA’s Senior Veterinarian Dr Anne Chester said people should take precautions during storm season.

“With severe winds predicted, people need to clear any loose objects from the animal’s immediate area,” Dr Chester said.

Owners of smaller pets were also urged to use common sense when leaving their animals out during storms.

Dr Chester said the RSPCA deals with cases of guinea pigs that have drowned in their hutches in the back yard.



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