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Old 04-12-2010, 03:39 PM
 
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Hi I was wondering if anyone has a dog with anxiety. I have a older dog that was always anxious but now he is afraid of everything. We cant even cough and he gets up and shakes and has a panic attack. If anyone has a anxious dog what have you done to calm him down with medication. He follows us always and whines until we sit down with him then he will calm down. Thanks Mindyr
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Old 04-12-2010, 04:15 PM
 
Location: Land of debt and Corruption
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One of my sisters dogs had moderate-severe anxiety, especially separation anxiety issues. She had rescued him from a shelter, and over time as he became more comfortable in her home he slowly grew more trustful and relaxed.

I take it this is not a new pet though? Sudden changes in behavior like that might signal something else going on medically perhaps. Did any incident happen that might have caused him to become suddenly more fearful and anxious? I'm not sure, but maybe talk to your vet to rule out any medical issues. There are also anti-anxiety meds for dogs too you may want to inquire about if it isn't medically related.

Good luck getting to the bottom of it all.
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Old 04-12-2010, 04:38 PM
 
Location: Santa Barbara CA
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If it is a sudden change I too would have the vet check the dog out. Nonprescription things you can try are Rescue remedy you can find it at healthfood stores. The Dap diffuser that releases calming phermones available in pet stores. Both of these may take several weeks to notice a change as they are not instant fixes. An anxiety wrap which fits around a dog and calms them sort of like swaddling a baby in a blanket you can buy the wrap on line or there are websites that tell you how you can make a wrap at home. What ever you do do not baby the dog when it acts anxious as that rewards the behavior instead try to ignore it.
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Old 04-12-2010, 04:53 PM
 
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We have an older dog who is now experiencing anxiety whenever my dh is away (on a trip or even outside doing work). Sometimes, he even paces and pants a bit in the evening while dh is here.

Our vet suggested trying melatonin, and I admit I kind of rolled my eyes, but I had dh pick up a bottle from the health food store. Well, dh had to go out of town for a week, and as I dreaded, my old guy started the whole pacing panting thing, for quite a few hours. So that evening around 7pm, I gave him a tablet (1 mg) and honest to god, within 15 minutes he'd stopped pacing and panting, and within a half hour, he went to his dog bed and fell asleep. If I walked by, he'd lift his head, but then went back to rest. So it isn't like he is "out of it", he is just more calm.

He slept all the way through the night. It was nothing short of a miracle, although from my reading, it doesn't work as effectively on all dogs (some could get hyper instead). It worked so well that first night that it scared me, because his calm was so immediate. I've used it every night since, and it has been the same each night, so it wasn't just an accident or a coincidence. He quits the evening pace/pant, goes to his bed, and then later I bring him into the bedroom, and tuck him in on our bed and that is that. He is "himself" again, without the anxiety at least for the evening. It is a relief to him, to me, and my other dog, who gets anxious herself when he starts getting agitated.

Talk to your vet, but consider trying this. I am a big old skeptic about such things, but it has been a life saver so far and I didn't expect such a thing to help us. Good luck - anxiety is really tough on the dog and hard for us people to watch.

Last edited by sugarsugar; 04-12-2010 at 05:05 PM..
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Old 04-12-2010, 10:10 PM
 
Location: east of my daughter-north of my son
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Also look into the possibility that the dog might have what they call "doggy dementia". Our old dog started to become very anxious right after we moved. We thought it was the stress of moving. He was worse at night and it was so bad my husband and I took turns sleeping on the couch trying to keep him calm.

We finally took him to the vet looking for some kind of tranquilizer to calm him down. After asking tons of questions, she determined he had dementia. She put him on Anipryl and after some minor ajustments with the meds, he returned to his old self in about a month.

It was a miracle for us. He is now 20 and not in good health. He does have some moments where he seems to be a little lost, but basically he is still doing well mentally. Which is pretty good considering all his issues.

Good luck.
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Old 04-13-2010, 03:29 AM
 
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Thanks for mentioning the anipryl. I am going to ask my vet about it. While the melatonin is has resolved my guy's anxiety enough for him to sleep, it doesn't do anything for his doggie dementia which is increasing a bit now. He is a bit "lost" and confused at times - like when we come back from a walk outside, he walks up onto the porch and heads straight for the wall, waiting for it to open...I have to redirect him to door.

Congrats on your old guy reaching age 20 - mine is only 15, but for an 80# dog, he made it far longer than any other large guy we've had. It would be wonderful to have 20 years with him, but he has other health issues, and I am never certain what each day will bring.

ETA: have you noticed any side effects? My old guy used to have seizures, but has been free of them for the last 3 years, and I need to be careful.
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Old 04-13-2010, 01:21 PM
 
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Thanks everyone, its not something that is sudden. He has been like this forever. Except now he is worse. We have a 5 year old so when ever she runs around or goes near him he panics. She cant even cough and he starts to shake and then as soon as she is gone in the other room he is fine. It is starting to get crazy here though beause I cant make my daughter just sit in a coner and be quiet all the time. I will talk to the vet about a tranquilzer or maybe prozac.
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Old 04-13-2010, 02:05 PM
 
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I wonder if this 'thundershirt' would help - have never tried it and dont personally know anyone who has but have read on other lists that it can work (I have no connection w/ the company and have no financial interest in it whatsoever)
Dog Anxiety Treatment | Cures Noise Anxiety In Dogs | Thundershirt.com

Also, there's a plug-in device you can usually find in a big dog store or online that's supp. to emit calming 'rays' (for lack of a better word), pheramones (sp) - you'd put it in the room where the dog is most often (not behind furniture) - that might be worth checking out too.

Just a few suggestions - good luck.
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Old 04-13-2010, 06:11 PM
 
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I read about this product today in a magazine that my labs veteranarian's office. Don't know if it would help your dog or not:

The Anxiety Wrap™ - End Thunderstorm Fear - A Product that helps Dogs & Cats overcome their fears and anxieties using the gentle technique of Maintained Pressure

Also, have you heard of T-Touch? I hadn't until today either.

What is TTouch®? - Tellington TTouch Training™
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Old 04-16-2010, 09:09 PM
 
Location: east of my daughter-north of my son
1,928 posts, read 3,109,579 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sugarsugar View Post
Thanks for mentioning the anipryl. I am going to ask my vet about it. While the melatonin is has resolved my guy's anxiety enough for him to sleep, it doesn't do anything for his doggie dementia which is increasing a bit now. He is a bit "lost" and confused at times - like when we come back from a walk outside, he walks up onto the porch and heads straight for the wall, waiting for it to open...I have to redirect him to door.

Congrats on your old guy reaching age 20 - mine is only 15, but for an 80# dog, he made it far longer than any other large guy we've had. It would be wonderful to have 20 years with him, but he has other health issues, and I am never certain what each day will bring.

ETA: have you noticed any side effects? My old guy used to have seizures, but has been free of them for the last 3 years, and I need to be careful.
Sorry to take so long to respond about the seizures. I was trying to make sure of something with my husband but we work different hours to it's been tough to get my question in!

My dog has had three seizures since he has been on the Anipryl. (He's been on it for three years.) At least that is what they appear to be. The vet hasn't seen him have one so she assumes it is a seizure or perhaps he is having mini-strokes. Now he did have one before we moved and wasn't on the Anipryl. But it was after he suffered a neck injury after falling off the couch when he was sleeping. (He just rolled over and fell off.) His injury was quite severe with swelling and his vet at the time didn't think he would survive or if he did he would be paralyzed. But she pumped him full of steroids for days and he somehow survived without too many issues. His gait has been somewhat "tilted" and he can't climb up or down stairs anymore and of course no more getting up on furniture.

It's been hard for our vet to tell if itthe seizures are from the anipryl, the neck injury, or as I said strokes. And they have not occurred close together. Very spread out.

And we haven't noticed any other side effects from the Anipryl. Not to be vague, there could be , but with his age and health issues it's tough to tell. But nothing stands out.

Sorry this very helpful. But as you know, your vet can be helpful as to whether it could affect your dog.

Congrats to you too. 15 isn't bad at all! My husband and I have talked about it and we now think Ben started having issues about that age with confusion but it didn't really get bad until after our move.

It's tough to see them like this, but we are grateful the Anipryl worked for him. And wouldn't it be wonderful if they could find the "magic pill" for humas dealing with dementia? Amazing how they can help dogs. It is a miracle drug.

Best of luck with your pup!
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