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Old 06-15-2008, 11:52 PM
 
Location: Southwest Pa
1,440 posts, read 3,702,196 times
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We've a Shih-Tzu who suffers from the same problem, a nervous ninny when a storm rolls through. The other two we have couldn't care less. Some research gave us the answer.

When dogs are puppies they go through a fear imprint period. Basically, what scares them during this time period will scare them forever. It happens roughly around the eight to eleven week old mark.
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Old 06-16-2008, 12:33 AM
 
Location: West Virginia
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That why it is so inportant to make sure your puppy is sociolized ...early imprinting!
Check to see how your dog reacts to noise..while playing clang pots together in the same room. Well here are ways you can help you dog over come the fears..........

BCSPCA - Reducing Fear in Dogs (http://www.spca.bc.ca/Animalbehaviour/fear.asp - broken link)

*Animals in Mind*
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Old 06-16-2008, 07:57 AM
 
Location: Florida
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you know whats funny our guy doesn't run, hide or anything that is usual fear behavior. he sits under our chairs or close to us and touches us w/ a paw or two. If we aren't home he sits in the closet but I guess he has enough confidence in us to still hang out in the scary storms if we are home. We dont comment much when this happens but we sometimes laugh.

Play and running trumps all fears it seems.

Cody use to be scared of fireworks....until my hub played a war movie every day starting at very low volume and he slowly increased volume. We would play games during this and he got use to it. Guess we would have to do it everyday to make more of an imprint.
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Old 06-16-2008, 11:02 AM
 
Location: West Virginia
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That was a great way to get him used to loud noise. Now before your baby is born get him use to baby sounds!
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Old 06-16-2008, 02:29 PM
 
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Katie1 and Bazzwell, both interesting, helpful sites. I have the opposite problem (thank God!) with my little dog. When there's thunder and very heavy rain, he either sleeps through it, or runs about the house barking at the thunder, and literally struts around.

Kelly3120, that is exactly what I did with my dog, when he was a pup and there was an unfamiliar sound. We made everything into a game....I'm sure it helped that he always got a treat afterwards, too !!
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Old 06-16-2008, 04:17 PM
 
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Maybe some dogs are more sensitive to noise than others. I know my shy dog, who had been abandoned in the wild as a puppy, would hide in the closet or under the bed with thunder, whereas the beagle sleeps through it.
The dog I grew up with, a terrier/border collie, used to streak across the yard in a second, then there'd be a huge clap of thunder. I never knew why he ran or what purpose it served.
I've seen dogs jump at the sound of a sneeze.
Seems it's best just to make sure the dog has a safe place, like a corner/closet/whatever to go in a storm, and never leave them outside during same. (My shy dog also jumped into the TV cabinet).
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Old 06-16-2008, 11:03 PM
 
Location: Jax
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bazzwell View Post
When dogs are puppies they go through a fear imprint period. Basically, what scares them during this time period will scare them forever. It happens roughly around the eight to eleven week old mark.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Katie1 View Post
That why it is so inportant to make sure your puppy is sociolized ...early imprinting!
If you are the guardian of your dog during this phase of his/her life, then you can take extra care with this development phase.

We don't all have that opportunity though . My younger dog was very fearful of just about everything when we first found her. She still has a lot of fears, but we're working through them. I doubt she'll ever be as fear-free as my older dog (I had that one since she was a tiny pup), but she's come a long way. I just don't push her and I don't make a big deal out of her fears .
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Old 06-17-2008, 03:00 PM
 
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Yes, I agree. I was fortunate enough to get my dog at (what I later learned) was too young an age - five weeks. I was her first "mom". So, in that sense it was much easier to make games out of thunder, fire-truck sirens, etc. I know that when I get another dog, it will be an older one (a rescue), so things may not go so smoothly. You're right, don't make a big deal out of things, and dont push a dog who's scared.

I just think it's wonderful that we have this site, and that there are people on here who care so much for their animals and freely share such important information.
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