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Dexter78
(@dexter78)
Good Member

Good evening everyone! I'm a lifelong dog lover and new member of this site from Georgia!!

My dog, Madison, is scared to death of fireworks. Storms are really bad here as she hates them. We voted and now fireworks are legal. All good for parties and such. But...

This year, since midnight 01 January my entire city is enjoying all of the many different types of fire pops!!! My dog is a mess. I have the Thunder Jacket... Nothing, she sheds handfuls of hair and continues shaking like crazy. She gets so upset sometimes,  she will not go outside until daytime... Any ideas with the 4th of July is coming soon. 

Any help will be greatly appreciated. 

Gen. Dexter

Quote
Posted : 28/06/2018 7:10 pm
Bryan
(@bryan)
Admin

Greetings and welcome @dexter78 Thank you for bringing up this important issue! I've moved this topic to the Pet Safety & Wellness section of the Community.

Please check out Red & Howling's July 4th safety video linked on the site here:

https://redandhowling.com/2017/07/04/fireworks-stink-for-pets/

Red & Howling and I were just discussing rounding up useful information from her research, as well as suggestions made by R&H devotees.  Stay tuned! 

I hope other community members will chime in on this timely and critical topic!

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Posted : 28/06/2018 8:11 pm
Dexter78 liked
Mad Murphy
(@mad-murphy)
Amazing Member

Oh I hate fireworks with a passion.

Murphy is fine with them and only jumps if they are really close or loud.. The Dutch let off things like small morter bombs at new years its awful. But my little velcro dog Remy was terrified and I wrote this about how he felt.

Shell shock.

As another explosion rang out overhead he pressed his body to the floor shaking in fear, his hidey hole was warm and snug but that didn’t keep out the noise of the explosions or the vibrations that quivered through the building.

He knew he couldn’t stay here forever but were else was there? Outside it was worse, out there it wasn’t just the noise. Out there were the smells of the gunpowder that stung his nostrils and made his eyes water.

The flashes of light went off all around and preceded each new barrage of explosions by just a millisecond, not long enough to take cover but just long enough to allow every muscle in his body to tense in fear as he stood paralysed expecting every explosion to be the one that hit him..

His heart pounded so hard he could hear it beat and it felt as if it was going to burst out through his ribs at any moment. He tried hard to breathe normally but as his body filled with terror that became impossible. The combination of shallow panic stricken breaths and his wild heart beat made him feel sick and dizzy but he knew he had to keep going and find a safe place, a nice dark place away from the noise and flashes that the explosions bought. He pressed himself against walls and hedgerows hoping to find some shelter or a place to hide but it was impossible.

After he had survived the first year he thought he would be ok and that it was all behind him but he was wrong. Year after year the explosions came and each time his fear was compounded, getting just a little worse each time. He really had no idea how much more of this he could take. Then, as yet another explosion filled the air above his head he felt the warm wet pool of urine form around his feet...

He looked up his eyes said it all.. I’m sorry, I just couldn’t help it..

Story of Remy aged 9 ...shell shocked by fireworks

 

Remy is no longer with us he passed away in Aug 2015 and one of the only comforts I had in loosing my little boy was that he would be free of his fear.

ReplyQuote
Posted : 29/06/2018 12:25 am
Kzu
 Kzu
(@kzu)
Fantastic Member

One of my friends' dogs is incredibly shy and anxious since she was adopted. When there are fireworks or thunderstorms, I bring Max over as he is unaffected by the loud noise. By reacting as if nothing is wrong can help reduce the stress in your dog. I hope that helps 🐶

ReplyQuote
Posted : 29/06/2018 8:23 am
ErinC liked
Red & Howling
(@redandhowling)
Obsessed Dog Lady Admin

 
@dexter78 I hope this information helps you and others with the impending fireworks.  Even though I've used melatonin with great success, I'm going to try the more benign L-theanine this weekend.  

I'm not a fan of pharmaceuticals, but my dog freaks out over fireworks and the stress on her body is horrible, so I asked my veterinarian (the wonderful Limehouse Veterinary Clinic of Holistic Medicine) and she immediately recommended trying melatonin.  For those of you who don't know, Melatonin is a hormone secreted by the pineal gland, it occurs naturally in the bodies of people AND our pets!  

I take melatonin on a regular basis to help me sleep, but melatonin for my dog?  As a supplement, it can help us and our canine companions relax, de-stress, and sleep. It may also help with certain medical conditions.  It helps with anxiety and some doctors use it for dogs who have cancer and Cushing's Disease.  It’s also used in the treatment of conditions such as epilepsy (administered at night it can help ward off seizures). 

A little more info from the experts: 

Dr. Marie Haynes, a veterinarian in Ottawa, Canada, says she’s also seen melatonin help dogs who have thunderstorm anxieties.  “We use it whenever we need some sort of calming effect,” she says.

Melatonin is sometimes given to dogs who suffer from anxiety, says Dr. Judy Morgan, a holistic veterinarian and author of several books, including “From Needles to Natural: Learning Holistic Pet Healing.”

General Dosage Guidelines:
1 mg for dogs weighing less than 10 lbs
1.5 mg for dogs weighing between 10 to 25 lbs
3 mg for dogs weighing between 26 to 100 lbs
3 to 6 mg for dogs weighing over 100 lbs

(I use .5mg capsules by "Pure Encapsulations".  My vet said I can give Isabelle 3 mg (she weighs 50lbs), but Isabelle does well with just 1.5 mg for calming her anxiety.  I do not and would not use melatonin on a daily basis, but for high anxiety moments like fireworks it's a miracle.)
 
"For aging kitties who prowl the house all night and vocalize, consider low-dose melatonin, which is not only a sedative with a calming effect, but also an antioxidant. I also use rhodiola, chamomile and L-theanine with good results".—Dr. Karen Becker (healthypets.mercola.com)
 
CAUTIONS: Some brands of melatonin contain xylitol, which is very toxic to dogs and cats and can be deadly. Seek out the purest form of melatonin. There are some calming products made specifically for pets, but I prefer human-grade ingredients.
  
It’s best to discuss with the vet, the benefits of melatonin supplementation and inform the vet of other medication administered to pets, before starting any treatment. Caution should be exercised if there’s a pre-existing medical condition.  
 
"Melatonin is generally considered safe when used at the recommended dosage, although it should only be used under the supervision of your veterinarian. After all, it is a hormone and can interact with numerous processes in your dog or cat’s body, as well as with other medications. Because it regulates hormones, extended use may interfere with the actions of other hormones, so regular monitoring is advised if used for long periods of time."


 
If you're not sure you want to try Melatonin, then try L-Theanine!
It's wonderful for general anxiety, separation anxiety, and loud noises, like thunderstorms and fireworks.  It has also been known to help dogs with aggression towards strangers, other dogs, and children.  

L- theanine is an amino acid  (Suntheanine is the purest and  only source of synthetic L-theanine that I recommend and use).  I take it myself and it is wonderful for mild anxiety and stress).

Suntheanine  is incredibly safe and the side effects have not yet been reported officially in dogs and cats. 
Suntheanine has no known drug interactions, side effects or any limit of duration of administration. As opposed to some of the other relaxation promoting ingredients on the market, Suntheanine promotes relaxation safely, without causing drowsiness or impairing cognitive or motor function.

DOSAGE:  L-Theanine is effective at 50-200 mg  and its positive effects are exhibited within 30-40 minutes of consumption.

The key is to give L-Theanine BEFORE your pet's agitation from stressful situations starts to peak. That means giving it to your dog or cat about 30 minutes before the first  firework goes off or before the storm begins to rumble! 

CAUTIONSAgain, some brands of L-theanine contain xylitol, which is very toxic to dogs and cats and can be deadly.
 

 

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ReplyQuote
Posted : 29/06/2018 9:58 am
Bryan
(@bryan)
Admin

Gathering more tips and info others have left as comments on Red & Howling's FB post of the above video.  I've left out names to respect privacy - if any of these tips are yours and you'd like to add more, please feel free!

- "We usually have the central air on and turn up all the tvs, it doesn't totally drown out the sound, but it helps!"

- "We found a product called "Happy Traveler" that helped our boy last few years. It doesn't calm them as much as a prescription or melatonin but it was more gentle to his system and doesn't interfere with his medications.He paced and panted a lot less than on previous years. (Rescue Remedy didn't help him at all)"

- "I think CBD oil would work wonders! I have a friend who uses on her dog now for his restlessness at night. He also has kushings disease so she gives him melatonin and flax seed."

- "I use L-theanine for my girl who is terrified by fireworks and thunderstorms. It really works! Between that and the Thundershirt, she no longer drools, cries and vomits during these events. Zero side effects."

- A couple people mentioned Sileo

- "CBD Oil also works wonders."

- "Trying melatonin now on my 12 pound Chihuahua mix, Trixie, now -- to see if it works for the 4th of July. My vet has her take 25 mg of trazodone about 3 or 4 pm to get her calmed for fireworks and it works really well. But she does get very sleepy but that is preferable to her suffering the terror of fireworks. She's alert and active the next day."

- "I've had dogs in the past and always took care to keep them as safe and comfortable as possible. Darkened room, fan going, music.."

- "Lavender mist?"

- "ALL my dogs get both a 5mg melatonin capsule and a calming treat with the L-Theanine in it for the Fourth of July. I've not noticed them being groggy, but since we're all seniors... We just sleep in, anyway. It's worth having them be calm and relaxed when all heck breaks loose!"

 

 

Note: Putting this list together reminds me why we need this community - trying to find information like this in comments on previous social media posts is like trying to find a needle in a haystack - wow!  Here we can gather and discuss information in a much less scatterbrained, much more powerful way.  Searchable, organized, great people - Go Red & Howling Community!

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Posted : 29/06/2018 3:48 pm
Dexter78 liked
Bryan
(@bryan)
Admin

Well this is interesting...

Drones replace July 4th fireworks in western towns worried about wildfires.

https://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/news/2018/07/03/drones-replace-july-4th-fireworks-western-towns-worried-wildfires/752966002/

"Fireworks are a multisensory experience with sounds and colors and a thunderous finale people can feel in their chests, said Julie Heckman, executive director at the American Pyrotechnics Association.

Drone shows, on the other hand, mostly feature a low buzzing, somewhat like a swarm of bumble bees."

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ReplyQuote
Posted : 03/07/2018 6:26 pm
Dexter78, filothemaltesegirl, Kzu and 1 people liked
ErinC
(@erinc)
Good Member
Posted by: Bryan

Well this is interesting...

Drones replace July 4th fireworks in western towns worried about wildfires.

https://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/news/2018/07/03/drones-replace-july-4th-fireworks-western-towns-worried-wildfires/752966002/

"Fireworks are a multisensory experience with sounds and colors and a thunderous finale people can feel in their chests, said Julie Heckman, executive director at the American Pyrotechnics Association.

Drone shows, on the other hand, mostly feature a low buzzing, somewhat like a swarm of bumble bees."

Now THIS is something that I would love to see take off in other places, too! We're in Massachusetts, USA, and private fireworks are illegal here. Of course, that doesn't seem to stop anyone. Fortunately my dogs are totally fine with them (phew!).

ReplyQuote
Posted : 03/07/2018 8:43 pm
Dexter78 liked
Bryan
(@bryan)
Admin

Sharing the new GIF here too  🤩 

https://gph.is/2IRNixK

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ReplyQuote
Posted : 04/07/2018 10:53 am
Bryan
(@bryan)
Admin

Melatonin one way to keep dogs calm during fireworks displays

http://www.wfmz.com/news/lehigh-valley/melatonin-one-way-to-keep-dogs-calm-during-fireworks-displays/762820616

Quoted from above article (they mention a video going viral, which is probably Red & Howling's video which has had nearly 8 million views on FB)

For some dog owners the Fourth of July holiday is no walk in the park.

“She normally just starts out by shaking a lot and then she'll start panting and pacing,” said dog owner Leah Haltrecht.

Haltrect says her dog, Shayna, hates the loud booms from fireworks and she's not alone, her neighbor’s dog Cooper hates it, too.

“Usually when he hears those loud booms he goes running, he'll go from window to window where he hears where it's coming from and he just starts barking and barking and barking,” said Cooper’s owner Barb Micucci.

So, 69 News started to do some research on how to calm these canines and found a post going viral on Facebook. It's from an animal clinic in Las Vegas recommending pet owners give their animals Melatonin, a natural sleep aid used for humans.

“It is safe and for some animals it can really calm them down,” said Dr. Abby Worton, a veterinarian at North Saucon Animal Hospital.

Worton says melatonin is a great option for anxious pups and that the dosage depends on size. Dogs who weigh 26 to 100 pounds would need three milligrams, dogs that weight 10 to 25 would need 1.5 milligrams, and little ones less than 10 pounds would take one milligram.

Worton says pet owners can also try putting animals in a quiet room during the fireworks and adding a fan or some other kind of noise-blocker may help, too.

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ReplyQuote
Posted : 04/07/2018 10:59 am
Dexter78 liked
filothemaltesegirl
(@filothemaltesegirl)
Outstanding Member

The drone thing sounds and looks super cool, Bryan! What a great idea! 

Here in Brazil the big holiday with fireworks is new year's eve. I've actually lost a dog to that when I was a child and my family was traveling and the dog was being looked after by someone else and got so scared that she tried to escape through a gate and something horrible happened. I can't even bring myself to tell this story because it is so sad that it makes me tear up. The weirdest thing was that I dreamt it would happen before we got the news. It was horrible! I will never leave a pet away from my family in a situation like this again (even tho the person loved the dog and it was a freak accident. You always feel like you wouldn't let it happen had it been you 😔)

So far Filó is ok with loud noises, especially if we are indoors because our flat is super quiet. But lately, when we are out on walks, she will suddenly jump at a noise made by a bus or truck (we live on a busy street) 😯 I worry this will turn into something bigger... 

Claud (Filó's human)
IG: @filothemaltesegirl

ReplyQuote
Posted : 04/07/2018 5:05 pm
Dexter78 liked
Dexter78
(@dexter78)
Good Member

Excellent information, thank you everyone. We're now in a bunker...I think my neighbors might be explosive experts!! We will be up until 0200, like last night.. It even rained and they never stopped. Thank you for your time and kindness to help

Gen. Dexter

ReplyQuote
Posted : 04/07/2018 7:04 pm
Dexter78
(@dexter78)
Good Member

Thank you. Good luck. We are still under cover. 

Gen. Dexter

ReplyQuote
Posted : 04/07/2018 7:05 pm
Dexter78
(@dexter78)
Good Member

It's storming now and they are still going!! Here comes the lightning and thunderstorm... Back into the storm bucket now. She's at least stopped sweating and panting!!! 

Gen. Dexter

ReplyQuote
Posted : 04/07/2018 7:09 pm
Dexter78
(@dexter78)
Good Member

Thank you, Bryan. This is going to behind one of my favorite sites. This is a great group and great pet people. Thanks for all your help and research!!!! 

Gen. Dexter

ReplyQuote
Posted : 04/07/2018 7:13 pm
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