Posts tagged ‘dog anxiety’

Friday tip of the day – Stopping a Dog from Chewing

A dog’s mouth is the canine equivalent of our hands; it’s what dogs use to pick up and examine things, evaluate their potential use, and transport them from one place to another. Chewing lets a dog know what something feels like, how it tastes, and whether it’s good to eat. It’s a natural part of dog behavior: You can no more train a dog to stop chewing completely than you can train him to stop breathing. Chewing is also an important part of the pup’s development. Just
like babies, puppies chew in part to soothe sore gums during teething. It can take up to a year for a pup’s adult teeth to come in, so this is another instance where you’ll need lots of patience to teach your dog what he can chew and what he can’t.
Naturally, your dog will be attracted to anything with your scent on it, so be sure to put away shoes, socks, and other items you’ve handled that you don’t want destroyed.  If you don’t, the odds are they’ll be gnawed into oblivion.  Never give a dog
old shoes or clothing to chew on. Shoes especially will retain your scent. In fact, never give your dog anything as a chew toy that is the same as something you don’t want him to chew; he won’t be able to tell the difference between the old boot you gave him to gnaw and your new hiking boots.

Make those toys you want your dog to chew (and he should have a number of them) as appealing as possible. If he seems to be going exclusively for things with your scent on them, put chew toys in the laundry hamper for a day or two before giving them to your dog. Rubbing something tasty on the outside of rubber balls or other toys or stuffing treats inside of hollow toys can encourage the dog to select those items to chew on his own. In general, be sure you’re giving him the message clearly from the beginning. Give him the appropriate toys to chew, and praise him for chewing them. Always keep a chew toy within reach (even carry one with you). If you see your dog working on something you don’t want him to chew, quickly remove the item and replace it with a toy, then immediately praise him for chewing the correct item. There a million things in your home you don’t want him to chew; it’s much easier to teach him to recognize the handful of items he can chew.

If you want to give your dog bones to chew on, stick to large knucklebones or thigh bones. Before you hand them out, sterilize bones by boiling them for half an hour. Never give small bones or bones that could splinter easily, such as chicken or turkey bones.

Some dogs remain very active chewers all their lives. Destructive chewing is especially common in dogs who spend a lot of time alone, since it’s a way of working off boredom or anxiety. “Home alone” dogs need to have lots of different toys, which should be rotated to keep things interesting. When you’re home with the dog, be sure he gets lots of exercise and quality time
with you.

Thanks to the Animal Planet web-site for posting this article.

December 7, 2012 at 10:47 am 1 comment

4th of July and the Thundershirt

With the 4th of July approaching, my thoughts have been on all the dogs and cats who are frightened of the loud noises the fireworks make.  I’ve been seeing articles about these Thundershirts and, after reading reviews and articles about them, feel that I should spread the word.  This sounds like a great alternative to medicating your pet during these stressful times.

What is Thundershirt?

As seen on TV, Thundershirt is an affordable, drug-free solution for anxiety problems in dogs and cats. Thundershirt uses gentle, constant pressure on your pet’s torso (just like a constant hug) to help calm your pet. Unlike most anxiety calming products, Thundershirt does not contain any pheromones or drugs; thereby, leaving your pet calm but not lethargic. Thundershirt is great for dogs and cats with fear of thunder or fireworks (or any loud noise), separation anxiety, travel anxiety, crate anxiety, grooming, litter box problems, barking problems, hyperactivity, leash pulling, and even as a general training tool.

For: Dogs & Cats

Helps calm your dog’s or cat’s anxiety during stressful situations
Drug-free and easy-to-use
Recommended and used by veterinarians and trainers
Over 80% of dog owners report improvement in their dog’s noise anxieties when using Thundershirt

Great for dogs and cats with many anxiety issues, such as: fear of loud noises, separation anxiety, litter box problems, travel anxiety, crate anxiety, and more

How it works:
Thundershirt uses pressure to relieve anxiety. Experts believe that pressure has a calming effect on the nervous system and have been using pressure techniques for years on both animals and humans. Like acupuncture and acupressure does for people, applying pressure to dogs and cats has been proven to help calm them in stressful situations. In fact, 80% of dog owners who tried Thundershirt for a variety of anxiety problems noticed improvement in their dogs. Veterinarians and dog trainers use and recommend Thundershirt for anxiety too.

In severe cases of separation anxiety, it is recommended to use Thundershirt in conjunction with a training program.

Before or during a stressful situation, place Thundershirt gently on your pet’s back and fasten the chest and torso straps

Instructions for dogs:

1.) Place the Thundershirt on your dogs back and wrap the short wrap under the torso

2.) Wrap the long flap under the torso and secure with fasteners onto the Short Flap. You should be able to easily slide your fingers between the Thundershirt and your dog’s torso.

3.) Wrap the Top Flap down onto the Long Flap and secure with fasteners. Adjust to improve the snug fit and keep Thundershirt securely in place.

4.) Wrap the Neck Straps around the front of the dog and secure with fasteners. You should be able to easily slide your fingers under the Neck Straps and should not feel restricting around your dog’s neck.

Instructions for cats:

1.) Place the Thundershirt on your cats back and lightly wrap the Neck Straps around the front of the cat and secure with fasteners. Should be able to easily slide two fingers inside Neck Straps.

2.) Wrap the Long Flap under the torso and secure with fasteners onto the Short Flap. Make a comfortable, snug fit.

3.) Wrap the Top Flap down onto the Long Flap and secure with fasteners. Adjust to improve the snug fit and keep Thundershirt securely in place.

Tip: If your pet seems nervous or anxious when he or she sees the Thundershirt, try putting it on the ground and giving your dog or cat a little food, using Thundershirt as a plate. This trick often works because many pets become more comfortable with and trusting of anything that they associate with food.

Note: The fasteners make Thundershirt adjustable for many different body shapes.

You can find the Thundershirt by clicking on

June 30, 2012 at 4:30 pm 1 comment