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Discussion Starter #1
You know that wonderful moment when you've finally gotten to sleep after spending the entire week staying up studying for finals/writing papers and you're awoken by a huge thunder clap and 55 lbs of trembling, snarling australian shepherd on top of you? And for some reason I think I want another one of these haha? I must be crazy..

Good thing he looks so pathetic or it would be so tempting to toss him out the window right about now. One of these days maybe he'll believe me that the thunder is not going to eat us. But I guess for now I'm stuck staying up all night with my big scaredy dog crushing me until the loud scary storm goes away. Oh the joys of having a dog!
 

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I feel for you! Abbylynn started this last night with the thunder boomers!

I do not understand ... she was not afraid last year?

What are you doing for this? I am going to get a calming aid ... Abbylynn looked like she was about to have a seizure!
 

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My 16 week old pup has been through a couple thunder storms without any apparent reaction. I've given her a favorite treat during the first one.

Hopefully, she doesn't develop a fear of thunder. She has a little bit of Dachshund sharpness, so I could see this as a potential issue.
 

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Lord tell me about it.

Aleu is five, and has NEVER freaked out about storms. She's never had a bad reaction, never had a bad experience. We've been through floods and tornadoes.
Back in March, she suddenly developed a fear of storms. I woke up to a screaming panting pacing dog. Now every time it barely even drizzles she's on the freak out.
At this point I don't really know what to do. It hurts to know she's scared out of her mind and there's nothing I can do but be there for her, but I have to figure out something -.- I can't be here when I have to go back to work, and I can't be staying home constantly every time we have rain in the forecast.

Makes me wonder how they suddenly develop fears they've never had before >_>
 

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Yep I know the feeling. Kira is a afraid of thunder, she never used to be as a puppy, and I feel it had something to do with Blitz freaking out (as he always did with loud noises), because now that he is gone, Kira doesn't go darting under the bed anymore.

I have thought about a thundershirt for her, but have never gotten around to getting one.

The bulldogs could care less, except for the very loud booms at which they bark at it (probably telling the sky to shut up lol).
 

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Supposedly they do, and I have talk to some who use them, and they can't say enough good things about them.
 

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My mom's dog used to bark at the thunder (fear? Noise reactivity? IDK), until one time I was at their house during a thunderstorm, and I gave Shug a treat every time it thundered. So now she looks for treats instead of barking :p.

Thundershirts do seem to work, at least for some things, to some extent. They aren't miracles, but are helpful.
 

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I fashioned a homemade Thundershirt for Plume, stitching, cutting, trimming and pinning it together out of a too small stretchy under-top I had bought for myself. Too small for me and too large for Plume. So, I altered it for her to get her through the insanely loud Chinese New Year firecrackers/fireworks noise-fest that goes on for two to three weeks out of every year.

It seemed to help her through the worst of it. She jumped my legs onto my lap, buried her face into whatever part of me she could reach, kept the stretchy shirt on for an hour to two and them wiggled out of it.

Anyway, I do think Thundershirts can help, depending on dog, dog needs, dog personality, etc. Might be worth a try ...
 

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I have heard that dogs can develop thunder phobias throughout their lives, so you are not alone. I think it is most typical to pop up after maturity though.

So far, so good with my 2. Ozzie is terrified of most loud noises but thunder doesn't phase him. I don't get it, but I am not asking too many questions. I have a thunder shirt for him that I use if we are going to be walking in heavily populated/traffic areas. It seems to help, I think. Again, it is not a cure, but rather a tool.

My suggestion for thunder phobic dogs is to figure out where they are most comfortable. Is it in the dark? The basement? Their crate? In your lap? Get a thunder shirt and possibly some Rescue Remedy and/or DAP and some fantastic treats. Every time a storm starts up, I'd be treating them, if they'll eat.

My first dog, Tucker, was terrified of storms. This was before thunder shirts and remedies were available, so I would hunker down in the basement with him and that is where we would stay until the storm dried up. It is a tough thing to deal with, for sure.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Boomer has always been terrified of thunder/fireworks/high pitched beeping. I guess pretty much any loud, strange noise so this was nothing new for us. A couple weeks ago we were at the barn and the owners started cutting down trees... well lets just say I found the thing that will break his recall. Luckily he just ran to the car and hid under it until it was all over.

He has gotten much better with thunder though over the years. During the day as long as I can distract him with a tennis ball before the storm starts, he does pretty good. A lot of times now he will just be glued to my side during storms instead of hiding under beds/tables shaking from head to toe. At night though its different. Maybe because it wakes him up? He paces, climbs on top of me, growls, barks at it, shakes, and pants. Last night was especially loud thunder so he was worse than usual. I've never tried a thunder shirt before. I know some people who brought their dogs to be boarded would bring one for their dogs on fourth of July or if for storms and I don't know what these dogs usually act like but they were still pacing, whining, panting, and shaking.
 

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Thunder shirts will calm a dog if the phobea is not very bad. Ie the dog will stay near you but may shiver and salivate a little. The shirt works well for this level. I have a BC that now lies quitely durring a storm.
I have done some research on Dog Appeasement Pheromone (DAP) and am now doing more on Sargeants "Sentry HC Good Behaviour Pheromone Collar".
Again it may be a situation where it will only work on low level phobeas. The jury is out but I will get back if I find meaningfull results. If anyone has used these collars I am sure we would like to hear your feedback but not wanting to hijack this thread see my seperate post on "Pheromone Collars".
You also need to research the natural remedies as well as Chinese Herbs, all of which have varying levels of success with noise phobea.
 
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