Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Poor corgi girl

Poor ickle Winnie. I've tried everything I could think of to make staying in the school kennels easier for her- stuffed Kongs every day, her own bed from home, Comfort Zone (Dog Appeasing Pheromone) spray, Rescue Remedy and Borage flower essences, taking her out every hour, and covering her kennel so she wouldn't have to see the scary fan in the window...

... and her anxiety just keeps getting worse. Although she doesn't have accidents in the kennel anymore, and doesn't usually bark when I leave now, she's just been replacing those with other anxious behaviors. Today was the last straw- she didn't want to go visit any of her favorite people when we arrived at school, and for the first time, she planted her feet at the entrance to the kennel building and refused to walk in on her own. Then, when I came to get her at lunch, her Kong was untouched, and there was a puddle on the kennel floor. I thought she'd peed, but I looked closer and realized that it was drool- she'd been panting all morning from being so upset.

So today I finally called her vet and told him that behavioral modification wasn't working, and wanted to know what to try next. We decided to put her on a drug therapy program of Clomicalm and Alprazolam (Xanax). Clomicalm is a long-acting drug that's used for dogs with separation anxiety, and that probably won't start working for at least 2 weeks, possibly not for a whole month. The Xanax is the same stuff they give people to handle stressful situations, like for people who are afraid of planes before they have to go on a plane flight. That one is short-acting and works within about 20 minutes. Hopefully what will happen is that the drugs will allow Win to stay calm enough in stressful situations that she'll learn how to deal with the stress on her own. Then we can wean her off and she'll be our normal happy puppy all the time :-) Wish us luck!


Sam Tsang said...

how is she doing now? is she still on medication? let us know how she turns out. Come join us at

Chris Schommer said...

Much much better! She went off in May and she has been since able to get her self back under control easier, and get triggered less. It doesn't always work, but for her it sure did.