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Dr. Deb
Dr. Deb, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog
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Experience:  I have been a practicing veterinarian for over 30 years.
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I had a staffie from a rescue about 6 months ago. She suffered

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I had a staffie from a rescue about 6 months ago. She suffered with terrible anxiety and it has taken alot of hard work to gain her trust. Her behaviour became excellent. Unfortunately 2 weeks ago for no apparent reason, her behaviour has reverted back to when i first had her. She wont go for walks, is constantly shaking, keeps jumping on the settee and literally trying to sit on my head. She is following me everywhere and is sometimes refusing treats and her food. Im at my whits end and really need some advice. I have taken her to the vets who prescribed her antibiotics incase of an infection but this has mad no difference.I am on a very low income and cannot afford to keepmaking trips to the vets.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Shantal-Mod replied 3 years ago.
Hello,

I've been working hard to find a Professional to assist you with your question, but sometimes finding the right Professional can take a little longer than expected.

I wonder whether you're ok with continuing to wait for an answer. If you are, please let me know and I will continue my search. If not, feel free to let me know and I will cancel this question for you.

Thank you!

Shantal
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


Yes, please would you carry on looking for an answer, as i need help with this situation


 


Regards


Tracey

Expert:  Shantal-Mod replied 3 years ago.
Hello Tracey,

Thank you for your patience, we will continue to look for a Professional to assist you.

Thank you,

Shantal
Expert:  Dr. Deb replied 3 years ago.
Hi, I'm Dr. Deb and I'll do my best to assist you. I'm sorry that it's taken so long for someone to respond to you and I'm sorry for this problem with Dotty.

It sounds like there could be either a medical or a behavioral explanation for the recent change that you describe:

1. I wouldn't expect an infection to trigger her reactions but I have seen some dogs with hypertension behave as you describe. It should be easy enough for your vet to check her blood pressure to determine if it is high. We often either treat with these dogs with Enalapril and/or Amlodipine.
Unfortuantely, primary hypertension is fairly uncommon in dogs; it's usually secondary to some underlying disease such as kidney issues, diabetes, Cushing's disease, hypothyroid disease, cardiac issues among others.
We can treat hypertension with drugs but until and unless the underlying cause is found and treated as well, drugs will only partially help with the problem.
So, if blood work hasn't been done on Dotty, then this is something to consider although I do understand your financial situation may make this difficult to do.

2. When it comes to rescue dogs, they often are damaged in ways that we can't even imagine, which I'm sure you know. And, while it may not always be easy to know what might trigger an anxiety attack, this can be a common phenomenon for some rescue dogs. It doesn't seem logical to us but then fears and anxieties rarely are.
Ways in which you can try to reduce her anxieties might be with products such as DAP which comes in a collar and a diffuser. This is a natural pheremone which is designed to install a sense of calm and reduce anxiety....somewhat similar to Rescue Remdy (although I personally have rarely found this product to be effective).
Simiarly some owners don't find DAP to work either but it should be easy enough to try it and see.
There is a similar oral product called Composure Chews which may also help in reducing anxiety.
A Thundershirt (LINK) can also help some of these highly anxious dogs. It's available on the internet and in pet stores here in the States.
Some of these dogs actually need anti-anxiety drugs such as Xanax to help with their anxiety issues when they are really intense.

3. She's very young to have something like a brain mass as an explanation for her change in behavior but I include it to be complete ...and not to alarm you.


I hope this helps and that Dotty's anxieties can be reduced or eliminated. I know how distressing this must be for you both.






Dr. Deb, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 9449
Experience: I have been a practicing veterinarian for over 30 years.
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