While Northlanders weathered the rain and thunder that accompanied the recent storm, dogs scampered out the door forcing their owners to take time off work to look for them.

The worst of Monday's rain and thunderstorms dissipated overnight and MetService is predicting mostly fine spells today and tomorrow with south westerlies.

In the last 24 hours to midday yesterday, Northland had about 90 lightning strikes and most occurred between 12pm and 12am yesterday.

Concerned dog owners took to social media to appeal for help in locating their missing and scared pets.


Dallas McKay's black labrador cross, Jett, went flying out the door when lightning, thunder and heavy rain began about 3pm on Monday and returned around midday yesterday.

"He hates thunder, fireworks and loud noises. I left my ute door open and as soon as the first roll of thunder occurred he pushed through the door. He's taken off before and usually emerges from the bush a couple of hours later but not this time.

"He usually hides around the corner or in the bedroom. It's microchipped, registered, and has a short tail."

The Kamo resident received a call from the Northland Golf Club after Jett was sighted by golfers but when he arrived his pet dog was nowhere to be seen.

When McKay returned home, Jett turned up "as if nothing happened".

Dallas McKay's black labrador cross, Jett, left home scared when thunderstorm struck but returned less than 24 hours later. Photo / Supplied
Dallas McKay's black labrador cross, Jett, left home scared when thunderstorm struck but returned less than 24 hours later. Photo / Supplied

Ivy Rakich wasn't so lucky after her 5-year-old Jack Russell named Wilson left from her Whau Valley home when thunder struck around mid-afternoon.

Her family has put out a cash reward while family and friends took time off work yesterday to frantically search for the animal.

"He's special to us and came into our life when we lost my husband's sister so Wilson's been a healing tool for us."


Rakich said Wilson usually hid under the bed and shook when there were loud noises.
The dog is registered but not microchipped and has a cellphone number on its collar. He was last seen running along the bypass by Denby Golf Course heading towards Springs Flat.

Whangārei SPCA centre manager Andrea Honeybun said a lot more dogs would have gone missing from a combination of thunder, lightning and heavy rain.

"These weather events can be very stressful for some dogs while others take it in their stride. They can be stressed to the point of breaking a window and jumping out."

She suggested dog and cat owners bought a thundercoat that calmed their animals down when they heard thunderstorms or when firecrackers went off. They work by providing a snug wrap, like swaddling an infant, and helped keep the animals calm. Thundercoats are available at pet shops or through www.thundershirt.com.

MetService meteorologist Mark Bowe said fine weather was expected today and most of tomorrow, with isolated showers turning to rain on Friday due to a low pressure system moving across from the Tasman Sea.

Northeasterlies would become strong, possibly turn to gale force but were likely to ease by late Saturday.