Just Labradors banner

1 - 15 of 15 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
13,489 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have resigned myself to the fact that Libby is not going to get over her fear of thunderstorms. I have tried everything the experts say. I've watched all the shows, read the articles, read the posts on here and nothing I try works. I know not to comfort her and reinforce her fear. I just let her go lay in the bathroom where she feels the most comfortable. But I just feel so bad for her. Lately, she's been changing her behavior though, and I think she's getting worse. She used to just run to the batchroom, but now she gets real clingy to us and doesn't want to leave our side, which is okay, but I don't want to comfort her. But I feel like a big meany. When I know it's going to storm I give her melatonin in a piece of cheese. I don't know if it helps or not, but it's worth a try. It seems like she starts getting anxious a couple hours before it even gets here. She's scared when it's windy, she's scared when it's raining, because she thinks it's going to thunder. How do you guys deal with it when you just can't get them over it. I've even tried putting one of my shirts over her, don't know if it helps or not.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,483 Posts
Eddie doesn't like loud noises of any sort - thunder, fireworks, loud voices - and goes into our bedroom and lies on the floor on my side of the bed when they occur. I don't know why this is a good place as there is a skylight right above him. However, he likes it there and we leave him there.

JJ, our 3YO Shih Tzu, gives me no choice but to pet him as he jumps up on me, and lies on me while the storm rages on. The other two, Windsor and Fanny could care less. Actually, Windsor is deaf so no worries there!

I understand the part about not feeding the fear but on the other hand, if I am sitting around watching TV, I am not going to ignore a dog who wants some loving in a time of fear. Especially when I am getting some loving in return!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13,489 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I know, I just feel bad for her. It's hard not to pet her. I like it better when she goes in the bathroom. I know that's her comfort zone.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
44,122 Posts
I know Melissa had the same issue with Kacey, I hope she sees this.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
44,122 Posts
I'm pretty sure Kacey is over it. Let me send her over here!! :)

Oh Meliiiiiiiiiiiiiisa!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,824 Posts
I know what you are dealing with, my Lexi is petrified of thunderstorms and fireworks. She is actually hiding next to my desk at the moment, as we will be getting a thunderstorm any time now. I can see the lightening off in the distance to the west of me.

I know you should not feed into their fear by giving them attention, but it breaks my heart to see her afraid. Normally she hides under the one end-table & I just leave her there.

Now fireworks on the other hand, I give her meds to help with those.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,889 Posts
I had a terrier that use to fear storms, and then as he got older, it was fireworks and anything that was loud. He could sense a storm hours before it hit. Even if the skys were blue at the moment. For him, we needed to drug him. If we didn't, he would throw himself into such fits...it was horrible. For him, he found relief in being out on the porch during the storm. Never understood that. It was like the storm was inside, and he needed to get away from it. We never found a cure for his fear either. Poor fella went to his grave still afraid.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,548 Posts
Kacey is not over it by any means, but she's better. I have no idea how she comforts herself when we're not home because we always expect to come home to a ransacked house on thunderstorm days and ~knock wood~ things have been fine.

BUT when we ARE home, she pants, she paces, at night she literally climbs onto my head in bed.... She will eventually settle, but a couple weeks ago I had bruises all over my arm where she walked all over me during a night-time storm.

I read so many things, tried actual tranquilizers from the vet, etc. Kacey has other personality quirks besides just the storm phobia and we give her a daily melatonin with her breakfast - well, only on the days we won't be home. It seems to have helped.

Also, I know all the rules about not comforting them, supposedly 'feeding the fear'. It never made one lick of difference in the way she responded. She's afraid. It doesn't matter whether I pet her or ignore her. So, why would I give her less affection during a thunderstorm than I would give her if she came up and sat at my feet on a sunny day? That's my philosophy. I don't go overboard with it. We just treat her like we normally would - normal pets and loving apply, rainy day or not.

So, I'm not much help. Melatonin is really all we've done. She's gotten a little better herself and I've learned to sleep with a 70 lb dog on my head. =)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,176 Posts
I feel bad for those poor pups. :( So far, knock on wood, Dozer does not seem affected by thunderstorms, and we have had a lot of them lately with more coming tonight and tomorrow. Cybil never had that fear either. My poor old Shep/DobeX Caleb was terrified though and he used to pant and pace and hide behind the living room lamp. Now that was a sight ... a 85lb+ dog hiding behind a skinny lamp. LOL
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,642 Posts
Duke will actually lean against you and shake. Freckles just pees while pacing leaving a line of pee behind.
My old Jake was so afraid his teeth would chatter so loud you could hear it. The Vet finally gave me a prescription to help him cope. I think I'm going to ask the Vet for another prescription for Duke and Freckles.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13,489 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Well, I guess Libby isn't as bad as some of you guy's poor pups. She doesn't pace or freak out. She just pants and goes and lays in the bathroom, trying to squeeze behind the toilet. I figure as long as she's lying there, it's better than freaking out running around the house. If she does try to stay close to me, I try to do what you said Melissa and treat her as I would any other time. Makes me wonder why some are afraid and some aren't? Willy could care less what it's doing.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,429 Posts
None of my dogs now are afraid, but I have had dogs in the past who were afraid of thunder and fireworks, so I know how heartbreaking it is to see them like that. There was nothing that would help. I even got the storm sound tapes to condition one of them - didn't work. I would take them in the basement where they couldn't hear, or drown out the noise with the TV turned up, but they still were afraid.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13,489 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
None of my dogs now are afraid, but I have had dogs in the past who were afraid of thunder and fireworks, so I know how heartbreaking it is to see them like that. There was nothing that would help. I even got the storm sound tapes to condition one of them - didn't work. I would take them in the basement where they couldn't hear, or drown out the noise with the TV turned up, but they still were afraid.
I do that too, but now I think Libby associates the basement with it too. We had toronados near us one day and actually had to go to the basement and she didn't want to leave the bathroom. I had to get a leash on her and force her. There was no way I was leaving her. I think that freaked her out too. I always leave the radio on loud when I leave in the morning in case there's a storm. I really don't think anything helps.
 
1 - 15 of 15 Posts
Top