How Do Your Cats React To Storms?

posiepurrs

TCS Member
Top Cat
Joined
Jan 11, 2015
Messages
1,762
Reaction score
3,119
Location
Western Massachusetts, USA
Today we had a tornado warning and severe thunderstorm watch. 3 of my girls, Maggie, Tabitha and Lottie were freaked out and were trying to get in the basement. Thankfully it didn’t last long. I have never seen them act like this (kind of freaked me out that they reacted like that).
 

susanm9006

Willow
Top Cat
Joined
Feb 20, 2011
Messages
4,836
Reaction score
7,498
Like any loud outdoor or indoor noise, a thunderstorm or even a loud windstorm sends Willow running to her secret hideouts in the basement.
 

sabian

TCS Member
Super Cat
Joined
Mar 11, 2017
Messages
721
Reaction score
1,507
Location
North Carolina
My cats will sometimes get up and walk around when they hear thunder, maybe looking out the window. But they settle down pretty quickly and don't pay it much mind after that. If there is a really big boom, they will sometimes look at me for reassurance, get it and then go back to sleep.
That's pretty much what Manny does too.....
 

1 bruce 1

TCS Member
Top Cat
Joined
Apr 8, 2016
Messages
5,946
Reaction score
14,380
The cats and dogs here generally don't really care about storms unless they get bad. Two of our cats hate the rain and won't eat and will hide when it's raining hard (thunder makes it worse). When the rain stops, they're back to normal. I like a good thunderstorm so I think this helps them, because I'm not upset by it.
I never been through a real tornado (and I'm grateful for that), but one year we had a lot of wind, a lot of lightning, tornado warnings and my wife and I were getting edgy. Of course it was going on midnight so you couldn't see anything outside. Everyone was acting up, the cats were spooked, the dogs were clingy, and all the livestock were acting spooked. Nothing happened, but that was a bad storm and it got me all worked up and I think they all got worked up too.
 

1 bruce 1

TCS Member
Top Cat
Joined
Apr 8, 2016
Messages
5,946
Reaction score
14,380
Oh, and another thing.
A buddy of mine had a dog that was this laid back thing that would sleep through an earthquake if he could, and one day at about 7 or 8 years old he developed a violent fear of storms, he'd tear things up and then run and hide. After a few storms he decided to talk to the vet and the vet found his ears looked fine on the outside part (that we see when we look in their ears) but he had a very, very severe inner ear infection and that pressure and noise was really bugging him. When the ear was treated, the fear went away. I know this was a dog, and this is TCS, but if you have a cat that has never been bothered by storms and suddenly develops a bad fear, an ear problem might be the cause.
 

neely

May the purr be with you
Veteran
Joined
Dec 22, 2005
Messages
8,312
Reaction score
13,552
Most of my cats except one were never bothered by storms. In fact, they slept through them. Rocky, on the other hand, who has gone to the Bridge used to hide for up to 48 hrs. after a storm. He was terrified of them. :nervous: Now our dog who we adopted must have had a bad experience before he came to live with us because he would wedge himself in the corner of one of my children's bedrooms and literally shiver with fear. He also could predict or sensed when a storm was brewing. :storm:
 

MissClouseau

TCS Member
Super Cat
Joined
Feb 20, 2019
Messages
972
Reaction score
1,115
Location
Istanbul, Turkey
Mine was a street cat minimum the first year of her life. Loud thunders get her attention, heavy rain makes her gets nervous (she's not a fan of water), but usually her reaction is only for maybe a minute. She then proceeds to sleep. She sleeps more when the weather is bad for sure.
 

Cat Buddies

TCS Member
Adult Cat
Joined
Mar 4, 2019
Messages
148
Reaction score
313
My cats will hide in their boxes or corners and kept quiet.. they are just scared of the loud thunder..
 

GaryT

TCS Member
Super Cat
Joined
Feb 4, 2019
Messages
942
Reaction score
3,681
Location
Northeast USA
there have not been any intense storms here yet. The one storm there was did not faze Theo at all. My Oliver would run and hide before the storm even got here.
 

GPandS

TCS Member
Young Cat
Joined
Apr 18, 2019
Messages
25
Reaction score
73
Location
west virginia
my 2 oldest , almost 13, aren't really bothered by storms, as long as the curtains are shut.. My 3rd cat, who is 7 is totally horrified and hides in a closet or under a bed if it even looks like rain. All are totally indoor cats, I found the 2 older when they were tiny kittens, and found the 3rd when she was a few years old, it was storming when I rescued her, she was out in high winds and rain.. so may be why it affects her worse.
 

MoonstoneWolf

Cat Food Bowl Referee
Top Cat
Joined
Apr 15, 2019
Messages
2,172
Reaction score
1,899
Location
St. Louis MO
My strays are petrified of all storms or rain. They'v been strays for a year and a half (according to TNR) and still are not acclimated. And with the daily storms for a year where I live you'd think they'd be more afraid of the sun. Yes we've had only 5 clear days with no rain or snow in the past 11 months.

I'm reading that others who had strays or cats that went through TNR don't notice the weather but these strays are absolutely terrified. I"m wondering if something happened in that hoarding situation that storms remind them of that? Of course the man is dead and the kids know nothing, but 360 days of rain, snow, hail, tornadoes or storms you'd think they'd not notice this. I'm confused.
 
Last edited:

goingpostal

TCS Member
Alpha Cat
Joined
Mar 11, 2011
Messages
510
Reaction score
531
Location
MN
Neither cat seems to notice storms, the dogs either so it's quite nice. I enjoy sitting out on my porch during good rain/thunderstorms but that's the worst we get here anyways.
 

GPandS

TCS Member
Young Cat
Joined
Apr 18, 2019
Messages
25
Reaction score
73
Location
west virginia
the 2 I found as babies don't seem to mind bad weather, they are almost 13. the one I found as a young adult is very afraid of storms, but she was running outside during a bad one, we didn't catch her until a few days after. If it even rains, she hides in a closet, or under the bed. Thunder terrifies her. she is around 7? They are all indoor only cats.
 

Kflowers

TCS Member
Top Cat
Joined
Jul 28, 2018
Messages
3,534
Reaction score
5,179
Our once upon a time street cats would take shelter under the furniture for minor storms. For the big ones they'd head for the basement with us right behind them. One of the two bottle babies was terrified of thunder fireworks all that stuff. The current one isn't terrified, but before she got her arthritis medicine a coming storm would make her too cranky to touch. She would run to the weather alert radio and listen with me. then follow me downstairs if I go.

Now she has her medicine. The new dog changes things. At the first rumble the dog goes downstairs on her own, SG is torn between going down where the dog is and staying up with the storm when the weather radio went off. So I scoop her up and put her in her carrier and take her downstairs.
 

bengalcatman

TCS Member
Alpha Cat
Joined
Dec 5, 2014
Messages
378
Reaction score
1,233
Location
Eastern PA
When there is a big storm, June Bug looks at my wife and I very intently to see what we think. If we don't look too worried then she is fine. But, when there is a lot of loud thunder, she likes to hide her pretty little face and cuddle


Our timid little Bengal Lilia is unimpressed by storms. This is odd, as she is easily frightened by many things. She likes to watch storms from one of our
windows.


Makena could care less... except for one time I will get to in a minute...
Makena sits with his big brown nose pressed to a window and watches the storm intently. Then, he wants to go for a walk, so we put on his harness, take him to the door, and let him go out in the rain. He is COMPLETELY surprised that it is raining every time. He just can't make the connection that what he is watching out the window is what he is going find outside. He often sits stubbornly in the rain for a minute before stomping back inside... all pissed off that its raining. Once in awhile he will insist on walking in the rain, this happens less and less as he gets older.. but I generally put on a raincoat and oblige him. He only lasts 15 or 20 minutes before heading back in.

Makena's sopping wet harness and rain jacket drying by the wood stove


Once on a nice day I took Makena out and he immediately hunched down with all the fur on his back straight up. Having been hiking with him for years, I knew something big was up, but I looked around and couldn't see any threat. Then Makena let out his low pitched growl, which I have only heard a few times, usually right before he was ready to go after a large dog. The growl is deep and throaty and makes the hair on the back of my neck stand up: sounds like it is coming from a 100 pound wildcat. Makena turned, belly dragging, and slunk back to the door. Once inside he settled down but remained on high alert, ears erect, looking out windows every few minutes. I laid down to take a nap and few minutes later and my phone went off announcing severe weather: a tornado had touched down just a few miles away. We have noticed this since, when there are tornado warnings, Makena knows 10-20 minutes in advance. If we see that behavior and he heads for the basement, we will be right behind him!


It amazes me that Makena "knows" about tornadoes and the other cats don't pick up on them. Instinct I wonder? He had been re-homed a few times, maybe he had an experience with a tornado?
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #39

kittyluv387

TCS Member
Thread starter
Top Cat
Joined
Sep 10, 2015
Messages
2,851
Reaction score
4,093
My strays are petrified of all storms or rain. They'v been strays for a year and a half (according to TNR) and still are not acclimated. And with the daily storms for a year where I live you'd think they'd be more afraid of the sun. Yes we've had only 5 clear days with no rain or snow in the past 11 months.

I'm reading that others who had strays or cats that went through TNR don't notice the weather but these strays are absolutely terrified. I"m wondering if something happened in that hoarding situation that storms remind them of that? Of course the man is dead and the kids know nothing, but 360 days of rain, snow, hail, tornadoes or storms you'd think they'd not notice this. I'm confused.
Wow that's unfortunate. That means they are scared a lot! Where do you live??
 
Top