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Thursday, July 1, 2021

How to help my dog be less anxious

Searching for ways to help your dog be less anxious?  Here we share with you how we help our dog be less anxious and some stories about our peanut too.    

Just a puppy cuddling in his bed

Peanut, peanut, peanut... he has been good and ornery around here... he has been following bumble bees around the yard.  I warned him he may get stung, but he does not listen.  We have these little flowers in our grass, oh I am sure they are a weed... they are the same flowers I used to pick as a kiddo to make bouquets for my mom... 

Well, the bumble bee was buzzing around pollinating all the glorious weeds in our yard... and peanut?  He was following each flower after the bee left sniffing the flower, moving on to the next one... and following that darn bee buzzing all around the yard.  It was like tag with peanut and the bee, following each other around the yard.  Luckily, he did not get stung, they must have decided to live in harmony together for now.

Playing in my yard

Have you seen the commercials for Luca by Disney?  Peanut here, watches it with such intensity.  When they were swimming around the ocean, he got up and gave a little bark.  Then just kept wagging his tail, but he would not take his eyes from the tv for the entire commercial.  He surprises us every now and then like he did when he watched Willie Spence on American Idol.  

Some shows or people really catch his attention and he will not look away until the commercial or song or whatever he is so enthralled with is complete.  We just never know what will catch his fancy...

You know we have been working on clearing out items from the other house.  He has not liked being home alone while we are working.  When we come home, he will ignore us... yes, when we walk in the door, he acts like, you are dead to me, do not even look my way... it's bad... separation anxiety... I had to bribe him with ice cream to let us back in his good graces... and he graciously accepted us again, but only for ice cream.

Eating my ice cream

This past weekend, I was not able to go over and he was in heaven.  Sometimes dust is not my friend and it will throw me into a sinus infection or upper respiratory infection, and I have been known to go into pneumonia if it persists.  I coughed, needed my inhaler several times this weekend, and I needed Benadryl.

When we were getting ready for bed on Saturday night we did our usual routine, but Mr. Vintage picked up the Beandryl for me and brought it up with some water.  I used my inhaler and peanut comes over and lays by me on the bed, when I took the Benadryl and Mr. Vintage handed it to me?  Peanut would not let him on the bed.  He barked and growled and laid beside me like nope, you cannot get in this bed.  She needs rest and does not feel well.  We laughed so hard, and then I think I coughed up a lung in the aftermath... but he would not let him in bed for love or money.  We are not sure what started it, but he finally relented and was like ok... you can come to bed, but be quiet.  

We found a smallish basketball that was my husband's and brought it home for peanut to play with.  Mr. Vintage throws the ball to him and he volleys it back to him.  We are not sure how he knows how to do these things, he just does.  Even potty training, he just knew... my mom has had bells on her backdoor for as long as I can remember.  Do you know he trained her that when he jingled the bells he wanted to go out?  Yes, it is typically the other way around, but what can we say?  He is a smart little nut. 

Playing with daddy

If you have never seen a goughnut and have a strong chewer, I highly recommend them.  He lets a lot of his anxiety out on his chew toys and this one is basically indestructible (trust us, we have gone through a lot of toys that usually last 5 minutes).  Just do not let him drop it on your foot.  They are heavy... Mr. Vintage decided to toss it over to peanut, not playing fetch with him, just to get his attention.  Sometimes we have to distract when he gets focused on barking... and do you know this stinker caught it?  It has become a thing here in the evenings between the two of them now.  

July 4th is coming up quick!  Peanut gets a lot of anxiety when the fireworks begin.  We have to hole up in the bedroom with loud fans on and hold him after he has had his anxiety medication.  He will wear himself and us out barking nonstop.  Do you have a pup that suffers from anxiety?  With the previous combination and his Thunder Shirt  we hope for the best.

When he would have his nails trimmed, he would leash out at anyone and everyone.  The vet suggested anxiety medication.  He would still have anxiety so they upped his dosage.  I was not fond of that since he was so tired, he could barely stand or walk.   

We do not like to medicate him and have worked with him over his two years being with us on his nail trims.  He no longer needs anxiety medication for this.  We give him lots of love so he knows we are here for him and will not let anything happen to him.  He wears his thunder shirt, has toys for strong chewers so he can get that aggression out a different way.  

Now he does not need the medication for his toenails, but the 4th?  We have gone back and forth on this year.  We think he will still need something so the combination of his Thunder Shirt, maybe his anxiety medication, toys, and lots of holding... we are hoping he will do better this year since we feel pretty educated now on a pup with anxiety and he knows he is safe here which means the world to us to know he trusts us.

Flip flopping my ears

It has been a long road with him, but totally worth it!  He is the heart of our little family and keeps life interesting around here.  We believe he was mistreated before he ended up here and hate that for him, but we hope he feels spoiled and loves being here with us.  

He still runs away when I get a new trash bag out every week, we wonder if he was put in one... and he hates loud noises, probably why the 4th is not a favorite of his, but we will make sure he has everything he needs to keep him grounded.  In the end, we think it is all of the love and attention he gets that helps him the most with his anxiety.  

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