Anxiety and ThunderEase Products

Happy Sunday! I’m hanging on to the last months of summer and squeezing every last drop out of the weekends that I can.

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That’s what you think it is. A Teton mug cozy.

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Made by my sister who is insanely crafty.

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Teton is a little unsure of what to think, but I think he’ll warm up to it. 😉

Today’s post is about anxiety. If your dog doesn’t suffer from anxiety and could care less about things like being away from you, thunder, or fireworks, you may not find this post interesting. But, if you’re one of the many who deals with anxiety, fear, and nervousness in your dog(s), hi. Let’s be friends. Because it’s a very real and stressful thing.

Teton was never an anxious puppy. He did great when we left him alone and didn’t seem to even notice thunder or fireworks. It wasn’t until he turned two that we noticed a fear of fireworks (we call ’em boom sticks) and since then it’s gotten worse each year. Now, at the age of eight, not only is he afraid of fireworks, he’s afraid of thunder, lightning, and whistles (even a referee’s whistle). (He even panics in the opening credits of Disney movies when fireworks shoot out over Sleeping Beauty’s castle.) While a bit harder to confirm, Teton also exhibits some anxiety when separated from us.

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You’re probably familiar with the ThunderShirt. We tried it for Teton a few years ago but it didn’t seem to help. Teton’s cousin, Henley Pretzel, has one that he wears regularly. Recognizing that things change over the years and sometimes the things that didn’t work before work now, I’ll probably order a new ThunderShirt for Teton at some point since his fear of thunder and fireworks has gotten so severe.

The point of me bringing up the ThunderShirt is this: a few months ago, the kind folks there sent me a box of goodies for Teton.

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We received four products from their line, but today I want to introduce you to two of them – the ThunderEase for Dogs Diffuser Kit and the ThunderEase Dog Calming Spray.

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The ThunderEase for Dogs Diffuser Kit is a home diffuser that you simply plug into the wall in the room where your dog spends most of his or her time. The diffuser is designed to keep your dog calm and to aid in easing anxiety caused by thing like fireworks, separation anxiety, and fearfulness.

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The diffuser replicates pheromones that a dog’s mother emitted when he or she was a puppy in order to provide a sense of security and comfort.

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Each diffuser contains a 30-day supply and is easily replaced with a refill once depleted.

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I mentioned earlier that we think Teton may have some separation anxiety. While hard to confirm, I believe this is the case because he scratches at the carpets and rugs excessively (sometimes pulling material up and causing slight damage) when we are away from the house. Since that’s not something we can always control, putting the ThunderEase Diffuser in the room he spends the most time in while we’re away was a no-brainer.

Has it helped? Again, this is something that’s hard to gauge completely, but we believe it has, since there is less evidence of scratching and digging at the rugs and carpet. At any rate, I’m not naive enough to think that there isn’t the potential for disruptive things to happen while we’re away from the house like thunder, neighborhood kids screaming while they play, other dogs barking outside, etc. Anything I can do to help Teton be less stressed if and when these things happen is something I’m all about! Plus, the ThunderEase Diffuser is so easy. Open the box, attach the refill bottle, plug it in, and you’re done!

To up the ante, I’ve been using the ThunderEase Calming Spray in conjunction with the diffuser.

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ThunderEase’s Calming Spray is comprised of the same pheromones that are in the diffuser, but the great part about the spray is that it’s portable! You can spray it directly on anything your dog comes in contact with like a ThunderShirt, collar, blanket, dog bed, or even your car.

I love both of these products from ThunderShirt’s ThunderEase line because they’re all-natural, affordable, and easy to implement in Teton’s life. For many dogs, medication is the only thing that will work and/or the best thing for them, but I’d like to exhaust all of my other options before we get to that point for Teton.

If your dog struggles with anxiety or fear, check these two products out. And, if you have something else that works, I’d love to know about it!

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Happy tails…

DISCLAIMER: HER DOG BLOG WAS SENT THIS PRODUCT IN EXCHANGE FOR OUR HONEST REVIEW AND NO COMPENSATION OTHER THAN THE PRODUCT WAS RECEIVED.
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Newman’s Own & Joint Snack Sticks

Happy Monday!

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Why can’t we have every Monday or Friday off? I really believe that we’d all be happier, healthier, and more productive in our personal and work lives. Am I right?!

Today’s review is on a new treat from the Newman’s Own Organics line, available on Chewy.com.

Teton has been enjoying the chicken-flavored Hip & Joint Snack Sticks all week and we’re very pleased with them! Here’s why…

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These treats come in a 5-ounce bag that’ll run you just $3.71. That’s awesome thing number one. Awesome thing number two is that they’re made of great ingredients like chicken, chickpeas, rosemary extract, turmeric, and of course glucosamine and chondroitin. (Read more about glucosamine and chondroitin in one of my previous posts here.)

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More awesome coming your way. They’re made in the United States, they’re free of corn, soy, and wheat, and they are super soft and easily broken making it a great treat for dogs of all ages.

Teton approves, as evidenced by him creepin’ on me as I took these photos.

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If you’ve never given your dog a supplement or treat for their hips and joints, I recommend it. Why? Why not? I, myself, take a glucosamine supplement so why wouldn’t I do the same for my little dude if it’s likely to help his hips and joints?

The Newman’s Own Organics Chicken Hip & Joint Snack Sticks are a great glucosamine and chondroitin treat to try because they’re made with great ingredients and won’t cost you an arm and a leg.

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Now, if you’re in the market for something for your dog-loving self, walk run to TJ Maxx if you have one near you because OMG look at these adorable bags I got there yesterday. ♥

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The tote was $4.99 and the zipper pouch was $2!!! I couldn’t not get them. I’m seriously always on the hunt for dog stuff for humans so please, please let me know if you find anything amazing! You can e-mail me directly at herdogblog@gmail.com!

Happy tails, y’all!

DISCLAIMER: HER DOG BLOG WAS SENT THIS PRODUCT IN EXCHANGE FOR OUR HONEST REVIEW AND NO COMPENSATION OTHER THAN THE PRODUCT WAS RECEIVED.

Anxiety and Your Chihuahua: A Henley Pretzel Post

Henley Pretzel gets nervous. He’s part chihuahua, what can we say? When nervous, he shakes, pants, and sings the song of his people.

Exhibit A:

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Henley’s triggers seem to be the usual things that make most dogs nervous: Fireworks, thunder, lightening, loud trucks, car rides, etc. For the 4th of July this year, Henley and cousin Teton went camping to get away from the fireworks. Henley enjoyed his first firework-free camping trip.

Exhibit B:

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Slug or adventure dog? Your pick. No middle ground.

When Henley gets nervous, we will always put on his Thundershirt (which we blogged about here), and basically hold him and pet him until he calms down.

Henley’s newest trigger is the portable air conditioner that hangs out in the bedroom at night. As best as we can tell, it’s not so much as having the air conditioner ON that bothers him, but it’s when we TURN it on when he’s in the room that makes him nervous. If it’s on when he enters the room, no big deal. Weird, right?)

In any event, putting him in his Thundershirt helps, but we were interested in what else we could do. I went over to my local Mud Bay store and the saleswoman recommended VetriScience Composure dog chews. I think they were about $15 for a 30 count at Mud Bay, but Chewy has them for $10! Score!

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The chews are made of natural ingredients and chicken liver flavored. For dogs up to 51 lbs, it says they can have one chew per day or as needed, although it is safe to double or triple the dose in high stress scenarios.

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Henley’s a 14-pounder, so last night, when I turned on the AC and he got nervous, we cut one of the chews in half for him. We didn’t know how it would affect him, so better to go on the small side to start. We also put on his Thundershirt, for good measure.

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It took about 15 minutes or so, but we saw a noticeable change in him! He stopped shaking and started breathing more normally and pretty soon was fast asleep for the rest of the night. And he was up like normal this morning, raring to go on our morning walk! We’ll definitely be using the VetriScience Composure chews again if we need to, while simultaneously trying to avoid triggering Henley’s anxiety in the first place.

The chews get ⅘ stars on Chewy and 4.8/5 stars on Amazon, so seems like other people have had success with VetriScience Composure chews, as well.

Make sure you talk to your vet if you have any concerns about your pet ingesting anything new, if you have concerns!

Thanks for the guest post, Henley P.! 

Happy tails…

Ear Cleanliness + OmegaPet Ear Cleaner (+ a Coupon Code!)

Do you regularly clean your dog’s ears? Should you?

Sweet, Sleepy Teton

Sweet, sleepy Teton.

I’ve cleaned Teton’s ears since we first got him at 8 weeks old. Mind you, I only clean them once a month (after bath time) or unless the little dude is showing signs of irritation or excessive itching. He doesn’t like having his ears cleaned but he’s a good sport.

Teton’s ears have been cleaned with a handful of ear cleaning products ranging from generic pet store potions to fancy schmancy sprays and wipes. Wipes are generally the easiest but also the most expensive. Sprays completely freak him out (I wouldn’t really want something sprayed in my ears either, to be honest). That leaves liquids that can be applied to cotton balls or cloths, which seems to be the lesser of the evils (to Teton at least).

Regardless of whether your dog has had a history of ear infections, ear cleanliness is just as important for your dog as it is for you.

The ASPCA, in one of their articles on pet care, has the following to say regarding the care of your dog’s ears:

Because of the twisty, curvy design of a dog’s inner ears, it’s easy for parasites, bacteria and yeast to hide and thrive in them. This also means that any debris in the canal must work its way up to escape. Infections can result from trapped debris. Dogs with allergies are particularly vulnerable, as are those with floppy ears, like Cocker spaniels, basset hounds and poodles.

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They go on to suggest these simple ways to prevent infection:

Your dog’s regular grooming/maintenance routine should include regular ear checks. This is especially important for dogs who produce excessive earwax or have a lot of inner-ear hair:

  • If your dog’s inner ears appear dirty, clean them with a cotton ball dampened with mineral oil, hydrogen peroxide or a solution formulated specifically for this purpose. Inner-ear skin is delicate, so allow your vet to demonstrate the proper method for cleaning your dog’s ears.

  • Do not clean your dog’s ears so frequently or deeply as to cause irritation, and take care to NEVER insert anything into your dog’s ear canal.

  • If your dog sprouts hair from his ear canal, you or your groomer may have to tweeze it out every few weeks to prevent problematic mats and tangles from forming. Please discuss with your vet whether this is necessary for your dog.

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OmegaPet contacted me a few weeks ago and asked if I’d like to try a sample of their Dog Ear Cleaner. I always research products before saying “Yes!” and was happy with what I discovered when I looked into OmegaPet’s ear cleaner.

This product is alcohol-free and made from naturally sourced ingredients like coconut oil, palm oil, and citrus extracts. (It smells pretty good. I’d clean my ears with it. Just sayin’.)

In addition to a great ingredient list, OmegaPet’s Dog Ear Cleaner is backed by OmegaPet’s 60-day guarantee, so they stand firm behind the quality of their product.

The Dog Ear Cleaner is insanely simple to use.

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While you can squirt the liquid directly into your dog’s ears and soak it up with a cotton ball or cloth, I’ve found that doing this freaks Teton out so instead I put the solution on a cotton ball and clean his ears with that way. It works really well and takes just a few seconds.

Teton’s ears were super clean this time around so I don’t have a nasty, gag-inducing photo to share with you, but if you’ve ever cleaned that dark brown gunk out of your dog’s ears you know that a good ear cleaning product can be invaluable.

OmegaPet was generous enough to offer Her Dog Blog readers a coupon so that you can see for yourself how easy and beneficial it is to clean your dog’s ears. To order a bottle of their Dog Ear Cleaner, go to their page on Amazon.com and when prompted at checkout to enter a coupon code, type in HERDOG21.

Thanks for the ear cleaner, OmegePet! Teton is going to have the cleanest ears on the block.

Happy tails…

Pet Naturals Hip + Joint for Dogs

Happy Friday!

Happy Friday

My little buddy hasn’t left my side today. Not like I mind. 😉

You know how important glucosamine supplements and/or treats are to me. After all, I’ve posted about them three separate times.

Zuke’s Hip Action

Trader Joe’s Glucosamine Chondroitin for Dogs

NuVet Labs NuJoint Plus

While any good glucosamine supplement or treat has quality ingredients that provide support for your dog’s joints, I’m generally more apt to give Teton his glucosamine in treat form since it’s more exciting for him. (It’s the perfect morning treat!)

Zuke’s Hip Action has been our go-to treat for a while but I bounce between brands from time to time to see what T likes best.

I was recently contacted by Pet Naturals of Vermont, who asked if Teton would like to try their Hip + Joint treats.

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Pet Naturals of Vermont is a division of a family-owned company that’s been around since 1972.

Pet Naturals® of Vermont is a leader in the pet health industry as an innovative company driven by a mission to improve the lives of companion animals with natural alternatives to drug and chemical therapies. Pet Naturals® offers highly successful solutions for common pet health concerns with products made from natural ingredients in the form of a tasty reward. Pet Naturals® specializes in producing condition specific formulas that are complete and properly balanced with powerful ingredients for optimum health.

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Pet Naturals Hip + Joint formula has high levels of glucosamine, chondroitin, MSM, and a host of other goodies that aid in the support of healthy joints, bones, and tissue.

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  • Glucosamine supports joints and aids in mobility and flexibility.

  • Chondroitin supports the proper structure and function of of healthy connective tissues and joints.

  • MSM is a source of sulfur, which helps maintain connective tissue function.

(source)

Giving your dog Hip + Joint on a daily basis provides joint support that may increase his or her quality of life by preventing joint, bone, and tissue problems.

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Each bag (starting at $7.69 on Chewy.com) contains 45 bone-shaped chews. (Or, if you have an extra large dog there’s a bag that has 60!) If your dog is 25 lbs or less, he/she should have 1 chew per day. If he/she is between 25 and 75 lbs (which is where Teton lands), it’s 2-3 chews per day. And if your dog is over 75 lbs, he/she get 4-6 chews per day.

If your dog should get more than one chew per day, Pet Naturals recommends dividing them up between morning and evening.

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Your dog is sure to gobble these little gems up since they’re made with chicken liver and fish oil.

Teton is a pretty active dog. Along with his daily walk and weekly dog park romps, we often take him hiking or running with us. Last weekend we went on a 10.5 mile hike that had some pretty legit elevation gain. He hiked like it was nobody’s business and, while he was wiped out afterward, didn’t exhibit any signs of soreness.

We want Teton to hike, run, play, and snowshoe with us for as long as possible so Pet Naturals Hip + Joint treats are staying in our daily treat regimen.

Thanks to Pet Naturals of Vermont for sending these chews our way. Teton’s joints thank you, as well! 😉

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Mooooooom! Stop embarrassing me!!!

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Happy tails…

NuVet Labs Review & Giveaway

*This giveaway is now closed.*

I’ve got a pretty rad giveaway for you guys today!

You know that I’m a fan of glucosamine supplements. I used to give Teton a supplement from Trader Joe’s but a few years ago we switched to Zuke’s Hip Action and then more recently to Cloud Star’s Dynamo Dog Hip & Joint (no review on that one yet but we’ve been pleased thus far!).

Glucosamine supplements, when given regularly, may benefit your dog by doing the following:

1) Reducing the risk of osteoarthritis

2) Reducing the risk of joint degeneration

3) Aiding in the reduction of joint inflammation

4) Reducing the risk of cartilage degeneration

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NuVet Labs is a company dedicated to manufacturing the best canine and feline nutritional supplements on the market so I was excited to be contacted by them to host this giveaway.

A couple of weeks ago, NuVet Labs sent me their NuJoint Plus formula for Teton to test.

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NuJoint Plus boasts a makeup of 250 mg of glucosamine and 125 mg of chondroitin and is flavored with chicken liver. Oh, yeah. Chicken liver.

This is what Teton did the first time I opened the bottle.

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I haven’t had any problems getting him to take these. 😉

Teton isn’t a very large dog at 42 lbs, but he’s pretty active and the way I see it, why not at least try to prevent joint problems if there are tons of great options out there to do so?

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With any supplement, I tend to be cautious at first and I’m sure to do lots of research before giving it to my little guy. I researched NuJoint thoroughly and was pleased to read that they manufacture their products in a human-grade pharmaceutical laboratory with human-grade ingredients. they also offer a 60-day, 100% satisfaction guarantee. Love that!

Now, to the good stuff.

NuVet Labs was kind enough to send one bottle of their NuJoint Plus and an additional bottle of their NuVet Plus multivitamin for one lucky reader!

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Check out the deets on their NuVet Plus multivitamin by clicking here.

This little bundle of goodness is valued at a $111 retail.

To enter the NuVet Labs giveaway, leave a comment below describing your dog’s favorite exercise. Does your dog go for long runs with you? Do you have a skateboarding bulldog? Anyone else have a dog that loves snowshoeing with them like Teton does?

For a second entry, “Like” Her Dog Blog on Facebook and leave a second separate comment letting me know.

This giveaway (open to US residents only) will close next Sunday, 3/30, at midnight. I’ll randomly select a winner this weekend.

Thanks to NuVet Labs for sponsoring this giveaway. As with all sponsored giveaways and reviews, I received this product free of charge. All opinions are my own.

Good luck and happy tails!

Dr. Harvey’s Relax Herbal Supplement

My little buddy doesn’t much care for the vet.

We just barely reach the vet’s office parking lot and he’s whining and yawning (a sign of stress) non-stop. Poor guy. I can’t say that I blame him, though. If someone stuck a thermometer up my butt every time I went to the doctor I think I’d be pretty stressed out, too.

The last time Teton was at the vet was a few weeks ago. It was a particularly stressful visit for him because, in addition to checking out all the regular stuff (temperature included), there was a lot of extra attention paid to his eye, which I thought was infected at the time (it wasn’t). He didn’t like having a bright light shone in his eye or fingers that didn’t belong to me pulling it apart to see if it was inflamed. But, when all was said and done, he did ok.

I knew Teton would be stressed out for the remainder of the day (his appointment was in the morning) because that’s just how he is, so when we got home from the vet I gave him a new calming supplement that Chewy.com sent us a while back. I’d been saving it for a particularly stressful time so this was the perfect opportunity to test the product and hopefully ease some of Teton’s anxiety.

For the record, Chewy.com didn’t ask me to review this product. They simply sent it my way as a kind gesture after I’d mentioned it in a previous blog post. Thanks, Chewy!

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Dr. Harvey’s Relax and Stress Herbal Dog Supplement

Dr. Harvey’s Relax Supplement is a powder that can be easily mixed into wet food or sprinkled onto dry food. It has a relatively short ingredient list and is free of preservatives, dyes and/or synthetic ingredients, salt, sugar, wheat, and corn.

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Teton only eats once a day, and that’s between 4:30 and 5:30 PM, so since I gave him the Dr. Harvey’s supplement earlier in the day, I chose to mix it into wet food. He only gets wet food every once and a while, so I knew it would be a special treat and that he’d be less likely to reject the supplement if it tasted or smelled strange.

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Taste of the Wild, in my opinion, makes some of the best wet food out there.

Turns out I probably could have spoon fed the supplement to Teton because it smelled delicious to him. His little sniffer started moving at hyper-speed immediately after I opened the jar.

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For Teton’s weight, Dr. Harvey’s recommends 2 scoops, so that’s approximately what I used. Well, Teton was pretty stressed, so I may have used 2 heaping scoops. 🙂

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Teton lapped this little concoction up in a matter of seconds. He loved it.

And, no kidding, after just 20 minutes, he was doing this.

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And continued to do so for the rest of the day.

To be completely honest, I was pretty skeptical of a calming supplement. There are a lot of a factors that could have contributed to Teton being relaxed and sleepy after his vet appointment but I wholeheartedly believe that Dr. Harvey’s Stress and Relax Herbal Dog Supplement works.

You can find Dr. Harvey’s Stress and Relax Herbal Dog Supplement at Chewy.com along with other products from Dr. Harvey’s. At just $10.17 for an 8-oz tin (my guess is that it will last us at least 6-8 months depending on number of stressful events), it’s very affordable compared to other calming products on the market.

If you give any of Dr. Harvey’s products a try, let me know how they work for your dog!

Happy tails…