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Thread: Thunderstorms?

  1. #1
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    Thunderstorms?

    I am sitting here in the middle of a huge storm, in good ol' New Jersey, and of course my puggle is going absolutely insane. When we got Mikey almost 3 years ago, his owner never told us about this. He is HORRIBLE with fireworks. I don't even know how to go about how bad he is. Thunderstorm scare him, but he is sometimes able to calm down and eventually goes to sleep. He is a total nut though, barking like crazy non-stop, running around, panting, and generally just acting crazy. If I put him in his crate, he starts digging and going crazy in there. I don't know what to do We've tried the thundershirt, prescribed Xanax (changed doses a few time with permission from the vet of course), calming powders in food, and sedatives. I guess all I am asking for is a miracle. If Xanax didn't work, nothing will But I'm asking anyway, have you guys tried anything that magically worked?
    Mikey - [Pug/Beagle Mix] Spock and T'Stala - [Hermit Crabs] Rest in Peace, Bo. I love you - [African Cawed Frog] Bo II - [Guppy] Buzz - [VT Male Betta] Chippewa - [BT Male Betta]
    "Never be ashamed of a scar. It simply means you were stronger than whatever tried to hurt you."

  2. #2
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    What happened when you tried the thundershirt? Is it possible it was not snug enough or something? Have you tried distracting him with commands or treats or anything?
    I've Been Frosted

  3. #3
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    Sparky is scared of storms, but not to the extent that Mikey is. As long as he can sit on my lap, or cuddle with me if we're in bed, then he's okay. I don't know how he acts when a storm comes up when I'm not here. He just started being afraid of them a few years ago when I was on vacation. There had been a bad afternoon storm and I wasn't here and my son and DIL were at work - it must have really traumatized him - poor boy!

    Hope you can find a solution for Mikey's fear.
    I've Been Boo'd
    Thanks, Barry
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    My little dogs - two heartbeats at my feet.
    by Edith Wharton & Me
    Sparky the Fuzzbutt - PT's DOTD 8/3/2010
    RIP 2/28/1999~10/9/2012
    Myndi the Fuzzbutt - Mom's DOTD - Everyday
    RIP 1/24/1996~8/9/2013
    Ellie - Mom to the Fuzzbuttz

    To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.
    Ecclesiastes 3:1
    The clock of life is wound but once and no man has the power
    To know just when the hands will stop - on what day, or what hour.
    Now is the only time you have, so live it with a will -
    Don't wait until tomorrow - the hands may then be still.
    ~~~~true author unknown~~~~

  4. #4
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    I don't have any suggestions but I feel bad for Mikey. I have never had a dog that was afraid of storms or fireworks. I often wonder though why the storms bother some dogs and not others.

  5. #5
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    RB Sugar was afraid of thunder. She would climb up the back of Dad's recliner, going INSIDE. Once, she got stuck and we thought we would have to take a knife to shred the thing to get her out. But finally she managed to get herself out.

    Tasha is terrified of them as well. I will pick her up and snuggle in bed with her, and sing. I sing the same song each time, so she learns that song means all is well. (Michael row the boat ashore) Three years back when she came here, she would crawl under the covers next to me, shaking like a leaf in a hurricane. This wasn't too good as she'd get hot fast. Now, she still shakes, but she takers herself off to my bedroom and goes under the bed (not under the covers). She doesn't come out until there is no thunder for at least an hour.

    I never tried a thundershirt or any meds with either of them, I just try to work with them. If you start feeling badly that he is so worried, he picks up your emotion BUT HE DOESN'T KNOW THE REASON. So this makes him even more panicky, as he thinks you are panicked too. So you need to focus on your emotions and keep them calm.

    Have you tried sitting on the floor and gently holding him next to you? When you put him in the crate, do you have a blanket over the top to make it like a cave / den / nest / safe place? Those are the only things I can suggest.

  6. #6
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    Oh trust me, the thundershirt was tight enough, he is just a Drama-King. He pretended he couldn't walk with it on. It works in the way that he focuses on trying to get it off by rolling on his back rather than on the storm.

    Honestly, holding him makes it worse. He usually winds up hurting himself or us, by scratching us or something. I also think he is a little embarrassed by the way he acts. He definitely prefers to be alone. We have tried treats, more specifically, his peanut butter bone but that of course only lasts a few minutes!

    I couldn't tell ya why some dogs react to storms and why some don't. I have seen both ends of the spectrum. Sassy never cared. She never acknowledged storms before. Mikey is the complete opposite. I would guess he reacts worse to fireworks because he doesn't expect them to happen, but storms he can sense earlier on. Dogs experience the storm much more intensely then humans. My dad jokes that Mikey wouldn't make a very good "gun dog". You'd guess that Beagles wouldn't react so much to loud noises since they are "gun dogs", maybe it's the Pug? My dads cousin had a few beagles for hunting and my dad was surprised Michael acts like this around loud noises, guess it just depends on the dog.

    I could definitely try the blanket over his cage, I'll try anything at this point. Pom, we always put Mikey in his crate when there's a storm warning and Mikey is going to be home alone. Poor Sparky At least he likes to cuddle though! That must help him alot. Sandie, that's really scary that Sugar almost got stuck! Poor girl You must have been a nervous wreck.
    Mikey - [Pug/Beagle Mix] Spock and T'Stala - [Hermit Crabs] Rest in Peace, Bo. I love you - [African Cawed Frog] Bo II - [Guppy] Buzz - [VT Male Betta] Chippewa - [BT Male Betta]
    "Never be ashamed of a scar. It simply means you were stronger than whatever tried to hurt you."

  7. #7
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    I would try the thunder shirt again! It doesn't matter if he spends his time trying to get out of it - it means he's focussing on that instead of panicking about the storm.
    I've Been Frosted

  8. #8
    A key thing to remember with anxiety is that it works on a reinforcing cycle. Think of it as a cork screw that spirals up. The best way to stop it is to find a way to end that spiral. Calming works along the same spiral, so if you can start a calming spiral, it should start to reinforce itself until it gets to a much calmer point. The key is to not put any more stressful situations into the mix. Make sure you are calm about the situation and do your best to bring your pup in to a calmer situation as well.
    Happy Holidays everyone!

    -NAPS Austin Pet Sitting Page (tons of cute pictures

  9. #9
    My dog used to be perfectly fine in storms, wind, fireworks, you name it. She would sleep by our feet. Then, she snapped. Now, during thunderstorms, she will break through doors to get in the basement bathtub in our rentor's area terrifying their dogs. She has broken 2 crates- the first, she impaled her foot in the metal bar while we were away and we had to cut the crate apart with wire cutters. the seccond, she chewed her way through an airline plastic crate while we were out. She rips off toenails and goes into a panick. She has broken a window to get inside once in a surprise storm. She will run through the electric fencing. Nothing can controll her at all. We have not tried the thunder shirt yet, but holding her does not help. The only way she will calm down at all is if we put her in my parents room while my mom is in there, but she can open the doors and starts freaking out again. Her crate is in my moms closet in the back and she will pull clothes into it and shred them. We have tried calming pills and stuff in her food, nothing helps. We need to try the thunder shirt, but do you have any other ideas?

  10. #10
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    I'm the dogsitter for my daughter--- her dog freaks when we have a storm. She has the thunder shirt which seems to help but not much.The day I had him here we had a severe storm out of the blue...I had no thundershirt so I grabbed a bath towel and wrapped him up tight in it...she also gives him rescue remedy which does help a lot, had none here that day. I do have phenos here so I gave him half of one, carried him to the living room where I was reading, set him down on the floor and he just watched me, didn't try to struggle out of the towel. My dog was sitting beside me, she doesn't care if the sky falls on us so he might have taken a cue from her, who knows--- but I just started reading and would check him now and again, he was always peaceful and the one time I looked up h e had fallen asleep.
    Asiel


    I've been defrosted---thanks cassiesmom

    I've been Boo'd -

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Asiel View Post
    I do have PHENOS here so I gave him half of one, carried him to the living room where I was reading, set him down on the floor and he just watched me, didn't try to struggle out of the towel. My dog was sitting beside me, she doesn't care if the sky falls on us so he might have taken a cue from her, who knows--- but I just started reading and would check him now and again, he was always peaceful and the one time I looked up he had fallen asleep.
    He probably just passed out!


    Seriously tho, I've never heard of such drastic behavior from a dog during a storm. My RB Sparky developed a fear of them when he got older, but as long as I held him or if he cuddled up next to me, then he was okay. I certainly hope that you can find a solution to this problem!
    I've Been Boo'd
    Thanks, Barry
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    My little dogs - two heartbeats at my feet.
    by Edith Wharton & Me
    Sparky the Fuzzbutt - PT's DOTD 8/3/2010
    RIP 2/28/1999~10/9/2012
    Myndi the Fuzzbutt - Mom's DOTD - Everyday
    RIP 1/24/1996~8/9/2013
    Ellie - Mom to the Fuzzbuttz

    To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.
    Ecclesiastes 3:1
    The clock of life is wound but once and no man has the power
    To know just when the hands will stop - on what day, or what hour.
    Now is the only time you have, so live it with a will -
    Don't wait until tomorrow - the hands may then be still.
    ~~~~true author unknown~~~~

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by pomtzu View Post
    He probably just passed out!


    Seriously tho, I've never heard of such drastic behavior from a dog during a storm. My RB Sparky developed a fear of them when he got older, but as long as I held him or if he cuddled up next to me, then he was okay. I certainly hope that you can find a solution to this problem!


    Ha ha...very funny POM..passed out on half of .5 mg...don't count on it I only gave it to him because I was sure of the dosage. But he gets pretty drastic during storms, this is the dog she found abandoned on the side of the road nearly 7 yrs ago, he had been badly abused. He has so many health problems it's not funny. For the hundreds she's spent on him and still is she could have gotten a registered purebred...the only problem is she won't buy one of those because they don't have trouble finding a home...she's a real bleeding heart when it comes to abused and abandoned strays.
    Asiel


    I've been defrosted---thanks cassiesmom

    I've been Boo'd -

  13. #13
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    Feb 2006
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    We had a foster pug that was terrified of storms, he would bark whine and howl until the storm had quit. He would also jump and try to catch the lightning if there was a window he could see out. We tried various things and nothing worked perfectly. We did on occasion give him zoloft which would only work if it was given about 45 min to an hour before the storm began....
    Misty - Pomeranian
    Pearl - French Bulldog

    Dixie - Pug

    Lola - Pit/Boxer Mix

    Sugar - Cane Corso

  14. #14
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    May 2013
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    From Indiana, but now living in Columbia, TN. which is approx.50 miles South of Nashville.
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    Thunderstorms

    Two of my 4 dogs are afraid of storms and firecrackers. The thunder shirts did not work for us. Our dogs can sense when a storm is coming so we get ready for it before they get out of control. We close the curtains. We sit on the sofa with them and watch TV with the volume turned up a little more than usual. They can't see the lightening, they can't hear the thunder as well either. They sit close to us and we pet them running our hand down from the top of their heads all the way down to their tails. It soothes them. We have tried drugs from the vet but decided to not give medications any more. Our vet says he has seen huge dogs practically tear down doors they are so frightened. Hope this helps. Peanut10

  15. #15
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    Poor dog. I hope you can find something to help but sorry I don't have any suggestions.

    My two little ones are not afraid of tstorm but Annie is petrified. She is an outside dog and her doghouse is located in the carport of our house where rain cannot blow in or anything like that . However, she will not stay in her doghouse during a storm. (On regular days she "loves" her doghouse.) When it thunders she takes off to an old building and goes under it. Yes, she has dug out an entrance so she can get under the bldg. Annie was a stray who took up here and I'm sure she had been abused. Also she has always been uneasy about loud noises, such as gunshots or thunder.

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