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I Broke My Greyhound


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This post is probably more of a behavior rant than anything else, please bear with me.

 

The past few days have not been Luna's best. This is our third summer together, and in past years, fireworks haven't bothered her in the least. This year, things were different. The big fireworks that the town put on didn't bother her at all, but the little ones that the neighbors were shooting off sent her into a frenzy. So, we went into my bedroom, I turned the ceiling fan on high, cranked up some soothing music, and rubbed her down with an ice cube, all of which seemed to help calm her down. I now know that I will have to look into some options and chat with her Vet to help her with her anxiety. And now she is terrified of going outside at night, and will run to hide in her crate when I tell her it's time to go out.

 

My family and I spent our holiday weekend at our cottage on a chain of lakes. In the past, Luna has loved the cottage. She loves wandering around the yard, checking out different smells in the woods, and heading down to our dock to relax by the lake. The first day we were there, despite my best efforts, a deer fly bit her belly and left a decent-sized bite. On top of having issues with the fireworks, she decided that she hated going outside in general, and took to hiding in my bedroom, only coming out when forced to take a potty break. It wasn't the end of the world, we all just left her alone and figured she'd come around, but she didn't. We drove back to my parents' house this morning (we've been visiting for the past month and will be here for a few more weeks). I thought she'd bounce back once we arrived here, but she didn't, and still has no desire to go outside, not even for a walk.

 

I am hoping that within a couple of days of getting back into a regular routine and going on our regular morning walks, she'll return to normal. I'm just amazed that one weekend managed to completely screw up everything for my poor hound.

Laura, mom to Luna (Boc's Duchess) and Nova (Atascocita Venus).
Forever in my heart, Phantom (Tequila Nights) and Zippy (Iruska Monte).

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One of our (elder) hounds is so highly sensitive to neighborhood fireworks that if we take any early evening walks (well before dark), but he hears a couple of small firecrackers from a distance, he's toast until September. We can only do early AM walks for a looong time thereafter. Hopefully Luna will recover much more quickly. Try to be patient, fear is a strong emotion for them.

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Treats. Lots of yummy, high value treats. And lots of your funnest, happiest voice. You'll need to counter what's in her mind now with positive experiences. Go back to thinking she's just home from the track and needs some extra help to get used to things.

 

Greyhounds can pass through this phase many times as they get settled in, as they encounter new experiences and people, as their world changes. Some are more sensitive than others and aren't as flexible when they have to deal with new things. FWIW, mine are just fine with fireworks in the distance, but even my most bomb-proof dog gets freaked by ones just down the block. It's too close, too loud and you can actually feel the concussion. It freaks ME out and I can't hear half as well as they can!

Chris - Mom to: Lilly, Felicity (DeLand), and Andi (Braska Pandora)

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Angels: Libby (Everlast), Dorie (Dog Gone Holly), Dude (TNJ VooDoo), Copper (Kid's Copper), Cash (GSI Payncash), Toni (LPH Cry Baby), Whiskey (KT's Phys Ed), Atom

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My last one was like that over neighbourhood fireworks. We get them in the UK on November 5th and because it's dark early they go on at random for ages and kinds seem to save them up for days after too. There was nothing I could do against either fireworks or thunder other than to allow her to go to the "safest place against storms in the house' which was, apparently, located under my computer table.

 

Peggy hasn't yet been worried about fireworks or storms (other than being outside in hail which makes her freak).

 

But they'll take up to six months to get over an 'issue' such as when Peggy was stung by a big wasp. She simply would not walk down round the corner where it happened on that side of the road for ages. Prey drive was what finally broke the spell, she saw a cat dart in there behind the bushes and just 'had' to investigate. I think there may be more stubbornness involved than actual fear.

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Time and patience. I'd follow your regular routine as best you can. I don't think you have to make a huge deal out of treats and whatnot. Just takes some days for them to learn that most of the time, nothing goes wrong.

Star aka Starz Ovation (Ronco x Oneco Maggie*, litter #48538), Coco aka Low Key (Kiowa Mon Manny x Party Hardy, litter # 59881), and mom in Illinois
We miss Reko Batman (Trouper Zeke x Marque Louisiana), 11/15/95-6/29/06, Rocco the thistledown whippet, 04/29/93-10/14/08, Reko Zema (Mo Kick x Reko Princess), 8/16/98-4/18/10, the most beautiful girl in the whole USA, my good egg Joseph aka Won by a Nose (Oneco Cufflink x Buy Back), 09/22/2003-03/01/2013, and our gentle sweet Gidget (Digitizer, Dodgem by Design x Sobe Mulberry), 1/29/2006-11/22/2014, gone much too soon. Never forgetting CJC's Buckshot, 1/2/07-10/25/10.

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Thank you all for your comments!

 

We had a loud storm blow through this morning, which she roached right through. It's interesting to me that a storm doesn't bother her one bit, but fireworks send her into panic. Today was a little better, and although she still spent most of her day sleeping in her crate, she did at least decide to greet my parents this morning. Luna won't eat or take treats outside, she has always preferred to be in her own space, but I've been trying to make her time outside as happy and upbeat as possible. She won't leave the yard and still runs back to the house as soon as she's done with her business, but I will keep working with her as slowly as it takes. My poor girl, I wish there was an easy button that I could press to make all of her fears disappear and return her to her usual goofy self.

Laura, mom to Luna (Boc's Duchess) and Nova (Atascocita Venus).
Forever in my heart, Phantom (Tequila Nights) and Zippy (Iruska Monte).

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I'm in Stafford, are you close to me at all? Maybe dumb idea, but do you think another greyhound, who is basically bomb-proof ( except for tallish grass) would help her get over some of her fears? I'd be happy to bring Harper over sometime to provide "leadership" A little fun playtime in the yard, walks with another grey?

Missing my sweet girl Scout. My snuggler, my chow-hound, my kissy girl.
It never thunders at the Bridge, and your food bowl is ALWAYS filled.

So strange not living in Atty World. I was a love struck handmaiden to your every whim.

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I'm in Stafford, are you close to me at all? Maybe dumb idea, but do you think another greyhound, who is basically bomb-proof ( except for tallish grass) would help her get over some of her fears? I'd be happy to bring Harper over sometime to provide "leadership" A little fun playtime in the yard, walks with another grey?

 

I love this idea. We're in Farmville, so unfortunately, not very close. We're in Wisconsin visiting family and friends now, and will be for a few more weeks. Luna is what I always describe as a recovering spook. Sometimes she's such a nut that I almost forget she was ever that way, but then we hit a set-back, and I'm brought back to what things were like for the first couple of months. Ideally, sometime soon, I want to adopt another hound, one that is self-assured and can bring her some leadership. But, right now I have been applying to dozens of jobs in hopes of relocation, and I want to make sure I am settled and have steady housing before that can happen, so I'm quite stuck in this situation for the time being.

Laura, mom to Luna (Boc's Duchess) and Nova (Atascocita Venus).
Forever in my heart, Phantom (Tequila Nights) and Zippy (Iruska Monte).

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Might check the gpawisconsin.org forum and see if there's anyone in your area who can supply a buddy for a walk or two :) .

Star aka Starz Ovation (Ronco x Oneco Maggie*, litter #48538), Coco aka Low Key (Kiowa Mon Manny x Party Hardy, litter # 59881), and mom in Illinois
We miss Reko Batman (Trouper Zeke x Marque Louisiana), 11/15/95-6/29/06, Rocco the thistledown whippet, 04/29/93-10/14/08, Reko Zema (Mo Kick x Reko Princess), 8/16/98-4/18/10, the most beautiful girl in the whole USA, my good egg Joseph aka Won by a Nose (Oneco Cufflink x Buy Back), 09/22/2003-03/01/2013, and our gentle sweet Gidget (Digitizer, Dodgem by Design x Sobe Mulberry), 1/29/2006-11/22/2014, gone much too soon. Never forgetting CJC's Buckshot, 1/2/07-10/25/10.

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Just an update on my pup. This morning she woke up and decided that all was good and well again. She ran down the stairs to sneak-attack my dad while he was getting ready for work, and then proceeded to herd me out the door so we could go for a nice long walk. She looked happy to be out walking, and no longer looked around like the sky was falling, nor did she try to just quick pee then run back to the house. She was back to eating vigorously and wagging her tail when someone would walk into the room where she was napping this morning. What the heck, she's like a whole new dog! I'm so glad that she's acting like herself again, and it certainly takes some worry off of my shoulders. Now I'll just have to work on finding some preventative measures to make sure this doesn't happen all over again next year.

Laura, mom to Luna (Boc's Duchess) and Nova (Atascocita Venus).
Forever in my heart, Phantom (Tequila Nights) and Zippy (Iruska Monte).

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No solutions found here yet, just commiserating. Both my girls turn into quivering, drooly messes from the first neighborhood firecracker. So, this has been a 5-night ordeal. They don't eat right, they are afraid to go out at night...etc. We are all kept up late into the night dealing with this. The whole nine yards. And then just when they are back to normal, it's time for New Year's!!! I have found that a combo of ACE that the vet gave me, plus some essential oil aromatherapy, have helped a lot.

(I only actually drugged them once, on the 4th). i was at my wit's end and ready to murder the people in my neighborhood.

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Guest DeniseL

Miami is the same way. He will probably be off for a month now after the 4th. Last night I had to lure him out to the potty spot with chicken and it took me a half hour almost....he just is terrified and freezes up...

Edited by DeniseL
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