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Tag Archives: noise anxiety

Monday Mischief: Safety from the Storm

Storm season brings with it many nights of stressed-out dogs and no sleep for me. I am trying a new thing by creating a tent that Louise and Sofie can hide under or just throwing a blanket over Sofie. Louise will stay under a lean-to as long as I am with her, but Sofie is just too freaked to deal with it. The blanket over her, nose exposed, while I cuddle her tight seems to soothe a little, but not much works. The thunder vest has been worthless for many years. I tried Xanax but the storms either come earlier or later than expected, so dosing is hard. It doesn’t stop them from getting upset, but they do seem to fall asleep earlier.

Sofie has decided that she needs to be up on my bed and chew on my pillows to protect me, I guess, from the noise.

Noise is our enemy at the Zoo. I’m glad that most fireworks displays were canceled this year (I hate the noise too). But that won’t stop my neighbors from doing their loud and noisy things from now until August.

Have any of you tried dog headphones to shut out noise? 

What kind of mischief did you get into today?

Just another DogDaz morning at the zoo ❤

 
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Posted by on June 15, 2020 in Dogs

 

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DogDaz Zoo: When They Tell You Your Dog Is Mentally Ill

Sofie-01I wrote the first part of this post in 2016 and never published itWhen Sofie was a puppy (born November 2010), other than being a bit whiney and barky in her first few months, she seemed like every other puppy I ever had. Thinking back, maybe she was a bit more strong-willed than others. It was harder to get her to listen to commands, but I figured that was her Sheltie/herding dog lineage and a vet told me she just needed a flock of sheep, or pride of cats, to work with every day.

Being the pet Mom that I am, I did Clicker training;  I tried positive reinforcement with treats; I hired private trainers (twice); I even trained with an e-collar (before I knew it was not a good thing to train with). And, for a long time, she was great off leash and listened when I requested her attention. The only thing that I have never been able to get under control was her barking. She has super sonic hearing and barks at the slightest breeze.

When I look back at the list of things that I worked on with the first trainer when Sofie was about 6 months old, I see that the list hasn’t changed much in 6 years. (1) Barking at everything; (2) whining;  (3) chasing cats. I can say that I taught her many things: not to jump on people, and how to sit, stay, come, stop, down, paw, leave it, drop it, up (in the car or on a bed), ‘Don’t’ (‘No’ is Louise’s word, so I used ‘Don’t’ for Sofie, so they wouldn’t get confused), find me (it’s a game we play), and place. I am pretty sure that she understands ‘quiet,’ but that she just doesn’t obey the command when I say it.

I feel like a failure. I have had 6 dogs in my life, and I have never had a dog with as many issues as Sofie.

Sofie’s challenges

  • Thunder anxiety (always)

  • Separation anxiety (sometimes)

  • Hyper noise sensitivity (always)

  • General, everyday, life anxiety

  • Night terrors. Waking several times at night from sleep and starting to bark and go crazy as if something is attacking her.

  • Dislikes puppies and any dog that lick her face

  • Skin issues (mostly in warm weather)

  • Breathing issues (whizzing and asthma like)

  • Digestive issues

How things manifest

  • Comfort sucking: She sucks on fabric, on the bed blankets, on toys (her favorites are catnip toys), even sometimes on my pants while I am wearing them. Sometimes she will ‘flank suck’ on herself, but that is rare.

  • She pants, a lot, no matter the weather

  • She whines

  • She barks at everything

  • She barks at dogs, people, trucks, anything passing the house, even if she can’t see them.

  • She barks at deliveries leaving a package at the any door (and of course my daughter buys everything online).

3 different Veternarians over the years have told me she suffers from some form of mental instablity. At the end of the day, what does that mean?

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Fast forward to 2019 – to be continued…..

After 8 years, Sofie continues to be a challenge in a multi-animal household.

Just another DogDaz morning at the zoo ❤

 
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Posted by on March 18, 2019 in Dogs

 

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