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How To Help Your Dog's Storm
Many dogs that fear storm
activity also fear other sharp percussive
noises, such as gunfire, exploding balloons, or low frequency sounds
from a sound system capable of rattling the windows. This is a
common dog behavior and fairly easy to correct.
storm noises originate outdoors, any attempts to simulate storm noises
or other loud sounds should originate there. But initially in
during dog training to test them use a routine which involves a single
hand clap followed
immediately by praise and introduction of some toy or other stimulus
the dog associates with happiness.
Dog owners should stage these performances repeatedly until the
dog acts happily
in response to loud noises, without the use of the above routine.
After this stage, it is still advisable to follow the same steps
required for dogs that do not respond to staged percussion.
dog trainers have tried using recordings of thunder, coupled with
strobe lights, without success. This is probably because of 2
factors unique to storms. First is the lack of barometric
pressure changes. Second is lack of the intense (to the dog)
percussive effects of low-volume thunder recordings.
If the dog does not respond to attempts at recreating storm sounds, the
solution becomes more difficult, as one cannot conjure up storms at
will. However, dog owners can watch the weather forecasts
make preparations at least 3-4 hours before a storm is due.
long lead time is necessary because many phobic dogs begin to show
anxiety as falling barometric pressure indicates impending
storms. In these situations, the training routine must be applied
at the first sign of anxiety in the dog, and then reapplied until the
dog shows upbeat behavior instead of the former anxiety, without any
need for the routine.
Sedatives: If the owner cannot be present to apply these procedures
before and during storms, sedatives and tranquilizers may be used to
reduce the dog's anxiety. However, without behavioral therapy,
such drugs have not been effective over the long term.
Desensitizing With Sound and Light: Though several authorities have
recommended playing low-level thunder recordings and gradually
increasing the volume as the dog accommodates to it, others in this
field have not been successful with this technique.
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How To Help Your Dog's