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Everything posted by pansmom

  1. It sure is a higher dose per pound! I just looked it up. Vala is only 29 pounds and the vet gave her .25 mg pills - the regular starting human dose. But he said we were starting low... She has been super-sensitive to the low doses of everything else we've given her (tramadol, ace), but he said the alprazolam might not do anything at this dose so I might have to up it to get it to where it will work. Poor thing, she spent last night in the bathtub. Just got back from the pharmacy now. Yes, this will be WONDERFUL for fourth of July too. She stopped being scared of the faint rumbling noises on cl
  2. I'm so sorry about your dog. I know it's not good for her heart, especially right now. That's what I told the vet. Thankfully I have the Rx's now... getting them filled tomorrow.
  3. The way this is written, it sounds like they are always walked together. Are you sure Bear isn't the one getting nervous, and Meg isn't picking up on it and being a lot more expressive/neurotic about showing it (is he more of a leader, and she more of a follower?) Or are you getting nervous? BCs are really good at picking up on others' emotions (dog and human). My other advice would be to get dogs into the habit of downing so often they will listen even when over threshold and doing relaxation protocol work with them to teach them to relax when in a down. Then when they (or if it's just Meg) f
  4. Not to hijack... But finally talked to my regular vet tonight on the phone! LOVE HIM! He agrees with Dr. Overall about alprazolam (xanax) being more effective than acepromazine. Tomorrow we start clomipramine with alprazalom for bleed through and early periods of extreme distress! SO EXCITED TO HOPEFULLY GET SOME RELIEF FOR HER and hopefully be able to start some behavior modification! I am so sick of seeing her dig at wall plugs and the floor, running from hiding place to hiding place with every thunderbolt, I keep having to pick her up to abort frantic behavior and place her in a kennel or t
  5. My vet and all the vet techs love Vala and know her by name. But she loved strangers when I got her and every time I have taken her there (which has been quite frequently over the past nine months since we rescued her) I take care to be very positive about it and work with her and treat her in the waiting room and in the exam room. Muzzled!!?!? Not this dog. She wants nothing more than to please people. All the time.
  6. Ahhh. Vala is 17 1/2" tall, with 23" length and girth, weighing 29 pounds currently (but she's down a pound because she hasn't been feeling 100%). So I guess she's about the same size as Cressa, only longer. She gets a lot of "is that a border collie? She's small" comments. But most of the comments I get are in the vein of "they're great dogs!" or "Such a smart breed" or "she's so sweet." Nobody ever says anything bad about BCs when Vala's around. Possibly because she's sitting at their feet staring soulfully into their eyes willing them to pet her! (The only drive that's apparent around stra
  7. How big is Cressa? Height/weight? Just curious. My Vala always gets comments because she's small...
  8. I'm so glad Vala loves staying with my in-laws, and my in-laws like Vala staying with her. It's the only way I'd be able to go on vacation without being miserable worrying about her! I am so looking forward to going camping in a dog-friendly cabin as a family later this summer with my mother and father in-law, my brother-in-law and his wife, and all three doggies!
  9. I'll admit I've always used a regular leash too. Not because I think it's better, but because the leash attachment was expensive, and I never got around to buying it. Plus I have safety gear I bought to do roller skating with Pan as a puppy (the bike was a lot safer! never had an accident with it! Though I only tumbled once on skates--glad I had that gear). For the bike, I teach stop, wait, left, right, etc. just through repetition as we do it. My experience has been that border collies pick up on directional command repetition VERY quickly. Vala knows to stop at all the stop signs in our neig
  10. Well, I wish they would give me Xanax, and will ask next time, when I see my regular vet next week (this was an emergency visit so I had to see a subordinate). But I still don't think I'd want to give that every day all summer.
  11. Wow, I must say, Kant sounds like a first-class jerk! Thanks for posting all that about pregnancy. It will be good for me to think about, come November (my EDD), and helps me to remember how much dogs, probably especially BCs, can be tuned into our emotions. The other day, Vala barked for the first time EVER at a stranger who came to our door. She has always only ever wagged her tail and DESPERATELY wanted to get pet. But this day I knew who it was going to be, a Cox Communications field agent, because I had seen her walking the street, and we've had some real problems with our Cox s
  12. Well, the prescribing information that comes with the medicine says, and I quote, "Acepromazine is most commonly used to alleviate fear and anxiety." And it's all they were offering, so I said I'd try it--but because Dr. Overall didn't recommend it, I started at the TINIEST dose. Glad we did because it was very strong, and I don't like it. But not because her symptoms worsened. Because she seemed TOO sedate on it and for hours and hours afterwards. I don't want her high for 1/2 of every day, just because it rains and thunders from 4-6.
  13. After about three uses, we've decided we don't like it. It makes her wayyyy too loopy even at the smallest possible dose (for a cat under ten pounds--she weighs 30)... On the medicine, which is listed on the veterinary label that came with it as having anxiety reducing properties, she does seem less anxious (no panting, no shaking, and she even came out and watched movies with us on the couch one night when she was on it) but she's a rag doll for hours afterwards and I don't want to give her something that strong every night--which is how often it rains here, summers. So we're back to Benadryl
  14. Try using two balls. Throw the ball short at first. Then once he picks it up and drops it, throw the other ball. While he is gone getting the other ball, grab the first. This is the only way I could teach Vala (a definite hoarder and collector!) to fetch because she hates the part where she gives the ball up. But once she saw that when you drop the first ball the second goes flying, she started to like dropping it better. AND she started bringing it closer to me because she was anticipating the part where I let the ball fly (thrill of the chase! ) She still sometimes goes and gets the ball and
  15. Having trouble keeping Vala quiet... it's storm season here in Louisiana. She had a terrible day! She hasn't eaten much at all, and she threw up a bunch of phlegm in the morning (immune-system processed dead heartworm, I've always guessed), then had a fit of panicking and trying-to-dig when it started storming in the afternoon, which the Benadryl didn't help a bit... It's going to storm in the afternoon all summer. I think part of the problem may be she's stir crazy, so I took her for a short walk this evening, but I also took her to the vet and the prescribed acepromazine, which Dr. Overall s
  16. Wow, thanks for that, Alaska. I'm going to print it out and show it to my vet. Vala has an appointment on Monday to be given the saline solution that kills any remaining larvae... Maybe we can strategize about the thunderphobia then. I hope the OP reads this too! I love Dr. Overall. ETA: I have been careful not to coddle her in the past, when she was anxious during storms, but I had almost forgotten these past couple of days since she's been both panicked and sick. It was helpful to read this reminder. Maybe it'll be helpful for the OP too. Now I remember why I'm not supposed to pet her at
  17. It's Vala. But she does seem better! I couldn't take it at my desk anymore (I'm pregnant and my chair is NOT comfortable, it was killing my back), so I'm writing in a more comfortable spot. But she's followed me here, and though she's hunkered down, flattened out at my side, at least she's listening to commands not to dig and staying still and trying to sleep. She's definitely lower threshold, more like anxious, instead of panicked. P.S. I love all your dogs' names!
  18. I had to call my vet today because it's storming again and she was freaking out, and they told me to give her Benadryl, to keep her quiet, right now while she can't get excited. She does seem quieter right now. She's actually sleeping through mild thunder rolling, but only in the cubby beneath my large built-in desk, and only while I'm sitting at it, so she feels doubly safe, protected by both me and furniture. Has anyone else ever had a vet suggest Benadryl?
  19. Gosh, strange that you should ask this right now. I am up with Vala, who's been dealing with a weirdly worse-than-ever case of thunderphobia for the last hour. It was like she couldn't find a safe spot: she kept going intermittently between her kennel, the bathroom, and jumping up with us on the bed. Problem is right now she's not supposed to be this active. But I don't want to lock her somewhere and go to sleep because I'm afraid she'll hurt the house or herself. Her frantic-ness may have something to do with the fact that she's pushing day ten after her heartworm treatment and is on meds. Cu
  20. Yes, I have told him, several times, that I think he is showing the exact bias you describe (that humans and animals are so different). The thing is, he is an atheist who believes in evolution. So I really don't know why he would have that bias, except perhaps that he always seems to err on the side of skepticism (as seen with his atheism--says the agnostic). But yes, he likes Kant (whom I haven't read, so don't understand the significance, even though he may have told me--care to explain?). I am like you and focus on evolutionary/behavioral similarities between humans and other animals.
  21. I read the original study on rats laughing a while back during a long discussion with DH, who was a philosophy major in undergrad and quite skeptical, about how/whether dogs experience positive emotions like happiness. I said they clearly did; he said there was no proof, that I was anthropomorphizing. So I read that whole article about the original study. While I thought it was interesting that they could select for the chirping behavior and make it increase in offspring by breeding selected rats and while I did think they proved that the genetically-selected chirpy rats were much more likely
  22. Great post. I loved the bit about Ted Bundy and THAT (sheesh, poor Dan, and poor ewe) and the part about Peg and useless creatures... I laughed. I am fond of useless creatures too. Good luck with that languishing book. I've got one up there right now (not a dog book, I write lit/commercial fiction) that my agent is trying to sell, and several friends who've published 4, 5, even 10 books at this point are getting projects sent back with notes that say, "Not quite ready I don't think, can you fix x." I think it's the market, more than the books, that is languishing right now. But I expect th
  23. Oops! Here is a link to the relaxation protocol: http://www.dogscouts.org/Protocol_for_relaxation.html.
  24. Isn't Dr. Karen Overall's relaxation protocol supposed to help with this too? It involves a mat or dog bed you name, teach the dog to go to on command, and then practice rewarding calm relaxed behavior in that spot. Then after you've established a pattern of rewarding calm relaxed behavior in that spot, when the dog is being overactive, you simply say "go to your mat" and the dog relaxes. I like Kristine's idea too... It basically does the same thing. Another thing that works is tossing tiny treats randomly/intermittently when the dog is being calm... dog learns ooh, when I am calm and lying d
  25. So alert, at the ready, and eager to please! The look in those eyes! And that expression! I think he's going to be a grateful, good dog. Not to mention handsome. I'm not showing his pic to Vala; she might develop a crush.
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