Is your dog more fearful or anxious than most? Do things like thunder, fireworks, car hooters, car rides and other loud noises send him into a frenzy of fear? And then you spend hours trying to get your little darling out from under the bed or he sits shivering in the corner.
These reactions are hard on the animal and just as hard on us because all we can really do is hold the animal in our arms until they calm down.
But you can’t always hold your animal for hours waiting for the thunderstorm to abate. What about separation anxiety? You won’t be there to soothe them so the problem will persist.
A very enterprising dog owner came up with an incredibly simple solution – one of those where we say, “Now why didn’t I think of that?”
It’s called a THUNDERSHIRT. It looks just like any coat one would buy for a dog or cat but this has body flaps that cross over to apply gently pressure to the dog. This pressure soothes and calms the dog much like the swaddling effect of a new baby.
There are different ways to achieve the same result if you prefer to make it yourself. Here are a few ideas:
DIY Thundershirt to help relieve anxiety this new year. (Saw this on FB; it actually works–for my dogs at least)??? pic.twitter.com/okaRxG9dqA
— Gelo of PAWS (@GeloOfPAWS) December 27, 2015
Use an old spandex top, small enough to apply gentle pressure to the dog’s body. Put the top on backwards so that the tail sticks out of the neck part. Sew a length of wide elastic to the bottom of the shirt to create a harness effect to go around the animal’s chest to prevent the shirt falling off.
Alternatively, use wide Ace bandage to create a half-wrap. Use the wider bandage for large dogs and narrower bandage for small dogs and cats.
Starting from the chest area, bring the bandage up around to cross over just above the shoulders at the back. Take it around to the belly and cross over bringing it up to the back. Wrap it around the belly again and tie it off on top. Please ensure that the bandage is not too tight. It must be firmly set but must allow for easy breathing. It is just the constant pressure that they need to feel to calm their nerves.
These measures only need to be in place until the animal has calmed down. Remove them when the danger of an anxiety attack has passed and you will be left with the beautifully calm and placid animal that you have come to love.