More Fireworks? UGH!
It’s that time again! While Labor Day usually doesn’t have as many fireworks as Fourth of July or New Year’s, it’s still an issue for those of us that have dogs with extreme fear and anxiety from fireworks and also live in states that have lax fireworks laws. (Boooooo!)
As I discussed in my July post, I believe that medicating a dog should not be the first option you consider. Many dogs have some anxiety, but it’s not severe and can be addressed without medication. There are various options you should consider prior to medicating.
Play and Exercise are Important!
Make sure they get plenty of play and exercise in the late afternoon before the fireworks begin. Don’t forget to give your dog their favorite toy with treats, cream cheese or peanut butter (without xylitol), like the Carrot, Snoop, Nook or Raspberry from Dezi & Roo to keep their minds occupied. Try sticking them in the freezer for a few hours and the peanut butter and cream cheese will last a bit longer.
Essential oils can also be very helpful for anxiety in some dogs. Make sure you check out Jamie Kasarda, The Holistic Pet Mentor. Jamie focuses on natural health care options and offers pet care mentoring sessions to meet your pet’s specific needs.
I’ve always thought that Riedi had a pretty severe anxiety, but after I read the book “Marley & Me”, I realized that he is only about a 7 out of 10. I’ve even noticed that as he has gotten older, his hearing may not be what it used to be so his anxiety isn’t quite as bad. That could also be his selective hearing!
His Thundershirt has worked pretty well, so I try to put it on him whenever there is bad weather or fireworks, however there are still times he just gets wound up and won’t settle down.
One of the more commonly known prescriptions used for noise anxiety in dogs is Acepromazine, often referred to as Ace. It can actually make your pet’s phobia and anxiety worse. Your dog may look relaxed, but they are actually terrified inside. It’s sort of like giving your dog a roofie, they know what’s going on, but can’t react to it. Not fun, huh?!? This is not a medication I would give any of my MuttButs for anxiety.
Have you heard of SILEO®?
If Riedi’s Thundershirt doesn’t do the trick, I’ll be using SILEO® this weekend.
According to their website:
SILEO® (dexmedetomidine oromucosal gel) is the first and only FDA-approved treatment indicated for the treatment of canine noise aversion. SILEO® is designed for easy, at-home administration by the pet owner.
It has to be prescribed by your veterinarian and for those that have tried it, many have had success. Therese Kopiwoda of The Social Media Hound has used Sileo® with her dog, Jed, and was pleased with the results. She even did a Periscope about how well he was responding (or not responding to the fireworks!).
“My border collie, Jed, is extremely anxious during fireworks and storms. We tried Sileo® for the July 4th weekend and this is the most relaxed Jed has ever been during fireworks! I am glad I discussed it with his vet and will be using it again.”
In preparation for this weekend, I got Sileo® from Riedi’s veterinarian. Better safe than sorry! I was pleased to find out that not only can you give it to your dog prior to any fireworks starting if you know your dog will react, but you can also give it to them after they show signs of anxiety.
Sileo® is a gel in a syringe that you apply between their cheek and gum. It is dosed based on weight and this syringe will be about two doses for Riedi, who is 50 pounds. I purchased it for about $38, which is well worth it to end my babies suffering!
If your dog suffers from severe noise anxiety and you have exhausted other options, talk to your veterinarian about Sileo® to see if your dog could benefit from it. It sounds like it can be a life changer for the Riedi’s, Jed’s and Marley’s out there.
This post is not to be considered medical advice, please contact your veterinarian to discuss your pet’s individual needs. I was not compensated for this post, but provided the information because I believe anxiety is a serious problem for many dog parents.
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