... and then there's Maddy (can she sense lightning pulse before thunder arrives?

I’ve been thinking of starting a nice and easy thread about my adventures with Maddy.
Moments in the life of and all that.

Topic of the moment would be the anemic monsoons, lots of drama wind and lightening, jealously watching the cloud bursts all around, but not here. We’ve only had two good down pours back around June 26th. Since then, clouds and weather, but not enough moisture to do anything. That’s not true, our wonderful little river got a few extra weeks worth of water, it was wonderful. Not enough though, I’ll be surprised if there’s water running August 1.

We’re at 7,500ish feet so decades back we received regular storms due to the uplift of moisture bands heading towards the high country and huge snow falls at Wolf Creek Pass, head waters Rio Grande River - and get backed up and dump on us. Or the moisture and storms would come from the mountains and evaporating moisture, back when year around snow fields and lakes still abounded.

Now the physical dynamic still happens, but the seasonal moisture isn’t enough to trigger the traditional cycle of region wide, and localized afternoon down pours. Weird to think 25-30 years ago I was among the last generation of ranch workers (fence building, walking irrigation ditches, bailing & stacking hay, ironically within a couple miles of where I live now) to experience those splendid centuries old cycles.
Now days I’m strapped in watching the slow drying. It’s a bit spooky so it’s nice to have Maddy to distract. And absolutely gorgeous down by the river, while the water runs, it’s like everything is okay with the world. When it dries, the future is here, and it’s increasingly oppressive.

But enough of that, the water is still running today.

Which brings me around to why I’m starting this. Maddy and electromagnetic impulse (lightening).

Maddy does not like guns firing, she does not like thunder and gets all sorts of squirrelly and timid and gets busy shoving her self into tiny space, she loves the neighbor’s where there’s a real closet she can hid in, and has indeed staked out her spot over there.

So I can get the thunder. But, I notice that she also suddenly cringes before the thunder arrives. With the years I’ve gotten to where I’m paying attention for the thunder claps, when she’s particularly on edge and weather is wild. On occasions it sure seems to me she’s been indoors away from window, and see her jump simultaneously with some distant lightening flash way off in the distance.

It happened again a few days back as a beauty of a cloud burst danced its way around us with lots of sturm und drang and mighty few actual rain drops.

I don’t know if I’m convinced, but it sure seems like she can sense the Electromagnetic pulse of lightning and it gives her a scare, then comes the thunder for another kick in da…

(fortunately no direct hits yet. :wink: )

I tried doing a little googling on the subject and found very little, once the irrelevant click bait articles were dispensed with.

Anyone out there know anything about the topic?
Can dogs or other mammals sense electromagnetic pulses?

From Heatwaves to Air Pressure, How the Weather Affects Dogs

October marks the beginning of National Adopt a Shelter Dog Month. In honor of our four-legged friends, we’re sharing how specific weather conditions impact dogs.

Heat, thunderstorms, dark skies, wind, and allergens can all affect your dog’s behavior, mood, and overall health. We’ll go through five different weather instances that may impact your dog and how you can track it to better care for your pet.

Thunder and Lightning

Thunder and lightning — one of the most common phobias in dogs. Signs of anxiety during a thunderstorm include panting, whimpering, barking, and hiding. Researchers at Penn State University found that some dogs experience a rapid increase of cortisol (the stress hormone) during thunderstorms. Additionally, researchers found that dogs afraid of thunder produce 200% higher cortisol amounts than dogs not scared of thunder.

Barometric Pressure

While thunder and lightning might have been a more obvious trigger, barometric pressure changes also impact dog behavior. Simply put, barometric pressure is the measurement of air pressure in the atmosphere. It’s more technically the measurement of the weight the air exerted by air molecules at a given point on Earth


Dogs can sense changes in barometric pressure, giving them the ability to sense adverse weather. They may become agitated; things that don’t usually phase them may get under their skin when there’s a change in barometric pressure. If your dog is growling, alert, barking, guarding, cowering, panting, or howling, changes in barometric pressure might be the culprit.

If you notice these changes in behavior and want to know for sure if the barometric pressure is the cause, you can check the current air pressure in your Tomorrow.io app, under “Forecast.”

That’s an example, they mention lightning, but don’t actually say anything about the electromagnetic pulse, that of course travels much fast than the thunder clap of of the air frying.

Those last words got me to fish a little and I came up with

Which led to this


Which led to this

It’s not surprising then, that dogs seem to pick up on impending weather changes and thunderstorms much before we do. Dogs detect the changes in electrostatic charges of the atmosphere and barometric pressure changes as well as detecting low frequency noises. To a dog, a thunderstorm represents a mini environmental disaster, several hours before we even know it’s on its way!

Thanks for the nudge.

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