Posts Tagged: dog anxiety

Do this, not that for dog anxiety! 4th of July noise phobia

dog anxiety

Firework stands are popping up everywhere.  Loud noises, primarily thunderstorms and fireworks, cause lots of dog anxiety.  Dr. Anna Coffin will share tips to help keep your dog safe and a new medication she is using with success.

Do not ignore dog anxiety due to noise phobia as this only leads to worsening symptoms each time they go through a traumatic experience.  Dr. Anna Coffin shares some tips that can help soothe your dog’s soul and will share a new medication she has found helpful.[Tweet “Do not ignore dog anxiety due to noise phobia as this only leads to worsening symptoms “]

Don’t do this for dog anxiety!

  • Don’t punish your dog when it is scared.  This behavior reinforces that there is something to fear.
  • Don’t reassure your dog when it is scared.  This behavior rewards your dog’s behavior and may cause worsening of symptoms.
  • Don’t sedate your dog.  Sedation prevents your dog from being able to do anything about their fear but does nothing to remove the anxiety.  Dog anxiety can increase with use of these drugs.

Do this for dog anxiety!

  • Locate a safe place in your house where the noise of thunderstorms and fireworks will be less obvious.  An interior room without windows is preferred.
  • Train your dog to settle and focal on commands using rewards.  Doing this in your dog’s safe place can help reduce dog anxiety during a thunderstorm or fireworks show.
  • Provide toys and treats that will help distract your dog
  • Provide background noise, such as music, television or white noise, during these stressful times.  Rap music or any music with strong beats help block the outside noise.
  • Use behavior modification techniques to desensitize and counter condition your dog.  Behavior modification is the ideal way to treat noise phobia and relieve dog anxiety.
  • Reduce your dog’s anxiety by using a Thundershirt, Adaptil collar or anti-anxiety medication provided by your veterinarian.


Dr. Anna Coffin has seen several cases of dog’s escaping and injuring themselves due to anxiety.  Make sure your dog has permanent identification such as a collar with tags and microchip just in case they do escape.

Medication is necessary in many cases.  As stated previously, it’s important to use anti-anxiety medication instead of sedatives.  Dr. Anna Coffin currently prescribes trazodone.  Trazodone is an antidepressant that is used to treat anxiety and phobia disorders in dogs.  This drug differs from Valium and Xanax because it is not a controlled substance and has fewer side effects.  It is important to give any of these drugs at least an hour before desired effect so that the drug can be absorbed and active in your dog’s body when the noise begins.

border decoration
border decoration