Anxiety Shirt for Dogs
The new anxiety shirt for dogs, called
the "ThunderShirt", is a great canine anxiety treatment to help calm a dog with
thunder phobia or other issues that raise a dogs anxiety level.
The concept is very simple, for dogs
with thunder phobia (and other anxiety related issues) the Thundershirt’s patent-pending
design is a firm pressure wrap that applies a gentle, constant pressure on a
dog’s torso, helping to relieve canine anxiety.
According to some experts such as
Dr. Temple Grandin, pressure applied to large areas of the body has a calming
effect on the nervous system. Therapists who work with autistic children have
found that pressure applied to the child's body has a calming effect.
Using gentle pressure to relieve
anxiety has been a common practice for years.
* TTouch (see description below)
dog trainers use pressure wraps to address noise anxiety and a variety of other
* Veterinarians use pressure to relax
cattle when they are administering vaccinations.
* Some autistic people use pressure
to relieve their persistent anxiety
* People who work at taming wild
horses have been using a "wheat pressure box" for calming fearful
* Similar research with positive
results have been done with aggressive dogs using a "Grain Box". (see
I purchased the Thundershirts to
use as a test with my own two dogs, Hope & Shannon, who both have a fear
of Thunder. Prior to trying the Thundershirts, I had been using a combination
TTouch wraps, along with TTouches with success.
I found the Thundershirts very easy
to apply and covered more area than the wrap, which is essentiality an Ace bandage.
You could also use a combination of the Ace bandage w/ a T-shirt, along with
TTouches and still achieve positive results for your pet.
The Thundershirt allowed me to get
a snug fit around their torso's. It has been storming the last few days (Thanks
to Hurricane Bill in the Atlantic) and has been the perfect opportunity to test
out the product.
The first time I tried it, both Hope
and Shannon seemed reasonably calm during the storm, but the storm was not a
particularly loud one. Later that night, I awoke to louder booms with Shannon
pacing frantically and Hope looking for a corner to hide in.
I put their Thundershirts on and
did a few TTouches on them till they started to calm down. Within a few moments,
both had settled down and were no longer panting frantically. They were both
still concerned about the storm, but were able to remain calm and we all went
back to sleep.
The above illustration
shows the simple steps for putting it on. No pulling anything over the head
like a T-shirt or threading there legs through leg holes! The Thundershirt Anxiety
shirt is made of soft fleece, with velcro closures.
According to the manufacturer,
for most dogs, some improvement is achieved with the very first usage. For others,
three or four usages are needed before the desired results are achieved.
Based on my own experience
using the TTouch wraps, I did see a slight improvement after the first use and
have seen a steady improvement with each use. The Thundershirt anxiety shirt
for dogs seemed to really help them settle down.
||13' - 17"
||17" - 21"
||15 - 25 lbs
||21" - 26"
||20 - 50 lbs
||26" - 32"
||40 - 70 lbs
||32" - 40"
||Over 70 lbs
I would also recommend
getting a book on TTouch to help your dog with anxiety, as well as a host of
other behaviors, by using touches along with the Thundershirt. Even if your
dog does not have any major issues, it will help strengthen the bond between
you & your dog.
Thundershirt is so confident
in their product, they guarantee it! If for any reason Thundershirt isn’t
the right solution for your dog, return it within 45 days for a full refund
of your purchase price.
Wheat Pressure Box
A wheat pressure box is a stall in
which the horse stands and his body is covered with wheat. The box provides
a calming effect on horses of a fearful disposition and is used as part of their
training. The pressure of the wheat produces the calming effect, which then
allows the trainer to handle the horse while it is not fearful.
- Temple Grandin's "Animals
in Translation" speaks in the clear voice of a woman who emerged from the
other side of autism, bringing with her an extraordinary message about how animals
think and feel.
Grain Box for dog aggression
research has been done on dogs with aggression issues. Once the dog was in the
"grain box", the body was covered with a lightweight material (grain
product) to effect restraint and tactile pressure, which was followed by a repeat
exposure to the stimulus animal that would normally elicit an aggressive response
from the dog.
Results indicated decreased heart
rate and an increased heart period variability (HRV) during the intervention
as compared to the baseline. They concluded that tactile pressure and restraint
may be an important tool for behavioral modification in both humans and animals.
- Williams NG, Borchelt PL, et al.
2003. Ambulatory monitoring of cardiovascular responses during behavioral modification
of an aggressive dog. Biomed Sci Instrum.(39):214-9. )
Developed by internationally known
animal expert, Linda Tellington-Jones, TTouch is based on cooperation and understanding
rather than dominance. These revolutionary techniques promote optimal performance
and health without fear or force.
TTouch ™ - the Tellington-Touch
- is a method based on circular movements of the fingers and hands all over
the body. The intent of the TTouch is to activate the function of the cells
and awaken cellular intelligence - a little like "turning on the electric
lights of the body." The TTouch is done on the entire body, and each circular
TTouch is complete within itself. Therefore it is not necessary to understand
anatomy to be successful in speeding up the healing of injuries or ailments,
or changing undesirable habits or behavior.