Solar eclipses are strange and interesting occurrences that can attract a lot of attention from humans. Upcoming solar eclipses often get a small feature on news outlets, and many people will pause and step outside to look at the sky during a solar eclipse. Solar eclipses may cause a buzz, but there’s no scientific evidence that they directly affect pets’ behaviors.
However, you may still notice your cat or dog acting strangely during a solar eclipse. Here are some possible reasons why you might see some behavioral changes in your pets.
Reasons Solar Eclipses May Affect Your Pet’s Behavior
Pets are extremely observant, and they can even detect subtle changes in their environment or in people’s behaviors. Both cats and dogs can detect and identify certain human emotions and emotional cues. If you and your pet have a particularly strong bond, your pet will be more attuned to how you’re feeling.
If your behavior changes during a solar eclipse, it’s very possible for your pet to mirror your emotions. If you show excitement, your pet may find a reason to show excitement as well. Since cats and dogs can detect and understand fearfulness, they may also act anxious if you’re acting anxious.
Sometimes, crowds can form to view solar eclipses as a group. This sudden formation and built-up excitement and anticipation moments before a solar eclipse can also affect a pet’s behavior and emotions.
A solar eclipse may also confuse some pets. Pets have circadian rhythms and often follow a daily routine. A solar eclipse can cause a disruption to their daily routine due to the sudden darkness. While we have the news to inform us of solar eclipses, pets won’t be aware of them until they’re actually happening. This unexpected change can cause some confusion or anxiety in some pets.
Ways to Help Your Pet During a Solar Eclipse
One of the best ways to help your pet stay calm during a solar eclipse is to model the behavior. Since your pet will pick up on your emotions, it’ll be helpful for them to see you being calm. This indicates that they don’t have anything to fear.
The same thing goes for excitement. If you have an easily excitable dog, it’s probably not a good idea to bring them to a group solar eclipse viewing. Your dog will most likely get caught up in the emotions, and it can be near impossible to de-escalate them when they’re in the middle of the excitement.
If your pet’s acting anxiously, continue to remain calm. You can give them a few reassuring pets and try to redirect their attention and energy to play or exercise. Some pets may respond well to music and feel calmer when they hear songs being played. So, turning on some mellow music may help them to feel less anxious.
Solar eclipses can stir up excitement in people, but they usually don’t have an effect on pets. Pets will most likely behave differently during solar eclipses because they see a change in their humans’ behaviors. So, if you have a particularly emotionally sensitive pet, it’s best to remain calm on solar eclipse days and continue to go about your day as if nothing out of the ordinary is happening. This can help your pet continue to remain calm throughout the entirety of a solar eclipse.
Featured Image Credit: OddTree, Shutterstock