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Product Review – Thundershirt

Thundershirt is a product for dogs that promises much and delivers even more.  It is a shirt for dogs that is used to help an overexcited or anxiety ridden dog.  It claims to help a dog who gets frightened of thunder storms separation anxiety, excessive barking, over anxious when guests come to visit, and an overall hyperactive dog that has not responded to any other treatment.

For us, Sasha had severe separation anxiety, was hyper active and used to shiver and shake and hide during thunder storms.  She used to whimper and whine and would pace, pant and bark and chew when we would leave her alone for any longer than 10 minutes.

Thundershirt comes in sizes xxsmall to xx large.  They should fit snugly, they are made of stretchy cotton material with velcro for keeping it on your dog.

I will say that this shirt has been a miracle.  Sasha does not get upset when we leave, during storms she stays calm (and has even fallen asleep, I am sharing pictures).  She does not whimper and whine anymore.  She hardly barks and she is an all round happier, playful dog.

If your dog is suffering, think about using this product.  If you are using it when there is a storm, try to put it on about a half hour before the storm starts.  It usually helps to keep it on for that amount of time.

Here is a video list that explains much better than I can about what the Thundershirt does.  They even released a Thundershirt for cats.

Final Verdict: If your dog has anxiety of any kind and needs something to help them, rather than put them on medication, try this product.  It is wonderful and I can’t imagine not having this and using it.  It is for sale on wag.com .  Try it and I am sure you won’t be disappointed.

Sasha before the storm, feeling anxious, then Sasha during the storm.  It was thundering like crazy and she was sound asleep:

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Good Dog Neighbor Etiquette

Recently, neighbors moved in with a new dog. I thought it might be great to come over and meet them with our dog, Sasha.

The family seemed nice, a husband and wife and two young children, and a Husky dog that is three years old.

The family went out that night and all was quiet for about ten minutes, and then it started. Barking, and more barking and went on for about 4 hours, until the family returned. I thought nothing of it, since it was a new home and the dog was trying to adjust to new surroundings.

Then it continued each day, all day, every day. The amount of time they are gone to work the dog barks. In the house, the dog barks, outside of the house, the dog barks. I am surprised that the dog hasn’t gone hoarse yet!

This got me to thinking whether there are articles about neighborhood dog etiquette and what to do about it.

Of course, I found a great article and have since gone over to talk to the family and gave them a copy of the article. I know it might seem harsh, but I don’t want to live with headaches daily and listening to a dog bark for many MANY hours each day.

Not only does that article discuss barking, it gives great information about dogs wandering and good dog park manners.

Hopefully the family won’t be offended and we can get back to living with our dogs in the neighborhood, happily and in peace.

What Do Different Dog Barks Mean?

If you have a dog, we all have heard them bark from time to time.  Sometimes it is a long and loud incessant bark, other times a short, staccato type bark, and other times it is a longing low bark.  Do you know what each one means?

Dogs bark for various reasons, sometimes it’s because they are bored, other times they have been left outside alone for too long and want to be back in with their “pack” (or people).  Dogs are pack animals, they like the company of others for the most part.

Dogs sometimes bark because there is a stranger invading their territory (usually a lot of loud short barks and sometimes a showing of the teeth or growling).  Usually if it is a person invading the territory, they will back off lest they may be attacked.

A dog will also bark when they want to play.  Usually Sasha will bark more high pitched and short barks.  This also leads to her going down into a submissive bow and then she’s ready to go play!

Some people will train a dog to bark to signal when they need to go out to and do their business.

After a while, once you have had your dog for a while, you will figure out what their bark means.  Almost like when a child cries, you quickly will know and understand what your child is crying for.

In the mean time, here is an interactive quiz from NOVA to see if you understand what each bark means.  If you click on the link that says “LAUNCH INTERACTIVE” (right beside the picture of the dog growling), you can listen to the bark and then choose which bark you think it means.  Have fun and learn at the same time!

 

Rave – Thundershirt!

Does your dog suffer separation anxiety?  Does your dog hate crate training or traveling or thunderstorms?  Do they pull on the leash so much that you don’t like going for walks?  I have a solution for you….Thundershirt!

Sasha has been severely abused and suffers from anxiety of all sorts and we were worried that she was not living a happy and healthy life.  I had no idea what I was going to do and had read tons of books and saw the vet.  Then I did some research on the net and found a site selling a Thundershirt.

If you check out the website, you will see that it is made of t shirt material, with some velcro at certain pressure points on the dog.  When you place it on them correctly, the dog goes from being wild and anxiety-ridden to calm, cool and some even will fall asleep with it on.

It was never an option for me to take Sasha back to the shelter after we discovered all her issues at home.  I consider my fur babies members of the family, and I would never return a member of the family to some place like a shelter.  The shirt has helped her immensely.  I cannot sing the praises enough of this shirt.

Case in point: Sasha would have a whining and barking fit and a puppy meltdown anytime my husband and I would get ready to leave for date night or shopping or what have you.  She would whine and cry, bark and follow us everywhere frantically trying to make sure we wouldn’t leave.  It was almost impossible to leave her for more than a half hour at a time.  She would bark and whine in her crate as we were leaving and we didn’t want our neighbors to have to put up with the noise.

Fast forward to a month later, we bought the shirt and were skeptical at first.  Then came time for us to go grocery shopping.  My husband called her over and she was whining and crying and was quite distressed, he finally got her to sit down.  We both held our breaths as he put the shirt on a HALF HOUR before we were ready to leave.  Honest to goodness, within a minute, Sasha was standing calmly, looking at us, not whining or barking or crying!  She went and laid down on the floor and started to chew on a bully stick and left us alone to finish getting ready.  She didn’t follow us everywhere, she wasn’t distressed anymore, she was just calm.  My jaw dropped because I couldn’t believe that she was the same dog.

Once we were ready, we called her over to her crate and she went inside the crate without any issues, she just walked right in!  I was in awe that this shirt could change her that quickly.

We put the bone in the crate with her and left the house.  No whining or barking whatsoever.  We left her for the first time for 2 hours and came back home to a happy, calm and tail wagging doggie.   I was so excited that we were able to finally find something that would help calm her.

It helps to calm her during thunderstorms and even when we are walking, she doesn’t pull on the leash.  It truly is an amazing product.

It is totally drug free (I am NOT into giving pills to solve a problem with a human, nor an animal.  Many vets will push pills such as Prozac to calm a dog, but I do not plan on ever doing that.  If you do, that’s totally your business, but it’s not my practice to do so).

What we make sure to do is to have Sasha wear it when she is doing stuff she really likes such as eating or going for a walk so that she doesn’t associate the Thundershirt with us leaving all the time.  We also put it on her at least a HALF HOUR before we are leaving so that she gets used to it and can calm down completely before we leave.

Usually, we will make sure that she has had a walk shortly before putting it on when we leave and also, make sure you take your dog outside to do their business before leaving them for any amount of time.  We always make sure she goes pee at least before we go anywhere.

Check out the Thundershirt website and watch the videos of the dogs before and after putting the Thundershirt on.  It is amazing the difference in behavior.

Sasha has become a calmer, happier dog since we started using the Thundershirt.  If you have a dog that suffers anxiety, leash pulling, difficulty with traveling, I highly recommend buying a shirt.  Yes it is $39.95, but that is a small price to pay for a lifetime of puppy happiness.  Think of the vet bills it will save, and how cheap that is compared to putting your dog on pills for the rest of their life.  Prozac for life is NOT cheap.  Try the Thundershirt, your dog will thank you!