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Open Roads Forum  >  RV Pet Stop

 > Nervous dog in thunderstorms

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gonecampin

Palmetto, Florida

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Posted: 07/28/06 01:27pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

My dog starts shaking terribly when he hears rain or thunder. Im thinking he might put himself into cardiac arrest the way he shakes.His breathing goes very rapid and he starts panting. Does anyone have any ideas on how you calm a dog during rainstorms. I gave him a benadryl thinking that might make he more sedate this time. Thanks for any replies.


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HD Riders

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Posted: 07/28/06 01:32pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

There's another thread running below called "its thundering" that is discussing the same topic so you might check there for help as well.

* This post was edited 07/28/06 01:49pm by HD Riders *


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snowhawkwoman

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Posted: 07/28/06 01:35pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I give my "terrified of thunderstorms golden retriever" benadryl. I have learned from watching Dog Whisperer that the best thing to do is be "totally calm" around the terrified dog and do not coddle them - ignore their "terrors and shaking" - you just reinforce their behavior - especially if you pat them or talk soothing to them during the storm. I've tried it the last two times we had storms and she's getting much better at not "reacting" - she has torn stuff up in the past - she now is "self-soothing" by sitting in the corner of the room - doing much less panting, etc.


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Kfancii

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Posted: 07/28/06 01:50pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

My Ted doesn't like storms either and he will go hide in my bedroom closet, or in the bathtub if I'm not there. If I am home he thinks all 65lbs of him need to be on top of me. He has always had run of the house and is very spoiled to sleeping on the couch or at the foot of my bed. Lately he has been pulling all the covers off the bed while I'm gone so I closed the bedroom door to keep him out of there. Big mistake - he couldn't get to the closet or the bathtub and we had a storm and he wanted in so badly that he decided to chew up the doorframe trim in an effort to get to his safe place. He hasn't chewed anything he wasn't supposed to since he was a pup, so I know the thunder had him very spooked.

I am guilty of coddling him and trying to reassure him so I'm happy to learn that I shouldn't be doing that anymore. Thanks Snowhawkwoman!

Now...can someone please tell me how to keep him from sitting on me while I'm trying to sleep at night when we have a storm?? [emoticon] LOL

* This post was edited 07/28/06 01:58pm by Kfancii *


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tomhole

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Posted: 07/28/06 01:50pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

That works better for our dog as well. Trying to sooth her makes it twice as bad. Just being in the same room and letting her do her shaking seems to work best. No calming remarks, no soothing pats, just an occasional glance. Seems cruel, but she actually will lie down and go to sleep this way. Before, when we coddled her, we thought she might die from the shaking and panting.

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beakybec

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Posted: 07/28/06 01:55pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

snowhawkwoman wrote:

I give my "terrified of thunderstorms golden retriever" benadryl. I have learned from watching Dog Whisperer that the best thing to do is be "totally calm" around the terrified dog and do not coddle them - ignore their "terrors and shaking" - you just reinforce their behavior - especially if you pat them or talk soothing to them during the storm. I've tried it the last two times we had storms and she's getting much better at not "reacting" - she has torn stuff up in the past - she now is "self-soothing" by sitting in the corner of the room - doing much less panting, etc.


While hard, the "tough love" thing works. My dog, a min pin, used to be very scared of thunder. It was so bad that she would associate any flashing light, like a camera flash or lights on the television, with being scared. She used to sit and shake until she was panting too. And of course we were sitting there petting her and saying "it's OK", which made it worse. Finally I decided to send her away if she acted like that. I would send her to her kennel. (Kennel is kept open all the time and when we tell her to go there she does and lays down. We rarely close the gate on it). Eventually, she learned that if she wanted to be next to us when she was scared, she had to be calm. Last night, we had a storm and she came and sat next to me. She was on edge but was not tense or shaking. She eventually went to sleep next to me. It took a few years and alot of broken hearts, but it worked. Good luck, hope you find something that works.


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Posted: 07/28/06 02:09pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Kfancii wrote:

Now...can someone please tell me how to keep him from sitting on me while I'm trying to sleep at night when we have a storm?? [emoticon] LOL


If you figure this out, please let me know. Hailey tries to get as close to me as possible but no matter how close she gets it's never close enough so she ends up laying on me!

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Posted: 07/28/06 02:16pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

HD Riders wrote:

Kfancii wrote:

Now...can someone please tell me how to keep him from sitting on me while I'm trying to sleep at night when we have a storm?? [emoticon] LOL


If you figure this out, please let me know. Hailey tries to get as close to me as possible but no matter how close she gets it's never close enough so she ends up laying on me!


So far the only answer I have come up with is to get out of bed and move to the couch! [emoticon]

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Posted: 07/28/06 05:39pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Well there is something you can try.

Our last furchild (passed away now, sob) was real uncertain about thunder and wanted reassurance. This was a nuscence, so I tried the following, which seemed to cure his fears completely. I put on a bathing suit and we went and walked and ran and played in the rain with the thunder booming all around. When it went boom I laughed and cheered. We both got wet, and some muddy, but after that he had no problem with thunder at all. He was a very smart German Shepherd, so don't know if it would work with all breeds.


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Posted: 07/28/06 06:27pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The best thing is to leave them alone and let them deal with it. You will do nothing but upset them more. I had a Boston that was the same way. Do not give them anything to calm them. The storm will be over by the time anything takes effect.





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