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The geese are back and Meik is a wreak

April 6th, 2007, 09:42 AM
Since last year with Meiks gun shyness and the hunters around here firing all willy nilly at the geese, meik is traumatized.
He startles with loud noises and bolts:eek: He didnt forget that geese honking led to gunshots in the fall and is a nervous wreak right now.
What can I do to ease him through this? I dont want to make it worse by coddling him when he gets frigthened but I also cant stand to see im cower when geese fly by:sad:
Any suggestions?

jesse's mommy
April 6th, 2007, 06:30 PM
Poor Meik. :sad:

Have you tried rescue remedy?

April 6th, 2007, 09:39 PM
Do you think a desentitization technique like that used with dogs fearful of thunder would work ?

April 7th, 2007, 10:20 AM
is rescue remedy like sedating him?

and im not really sure about desensitization thing would work... but maybe HEY what if when the geese were honking i started playing really fun games with him? would that take his mind off them?

April 7th, 2007, 10:51 AM
No, Bach's are flower essences. You can read all about rescue remedy here:

The thing with desensitization and counter-conditioning (along the lines of what you are suggesting ~ changing the association with geese from fear to fun) is that with high-anxiety you usually have to deal with anxiety before you can introduce a new response behaviour.

April 7th, 2007, 10:56 AM
thanks mumx3, I'll read up on rescue remedy.
I'll try that for now.
Also, im going to look into desensitization, I really cant stand seeing him all fearful like that. Poor guy.:sad: the worst is, hunting season will roll around again prolly just as meik is learning that the geese arent something to be fearful of.:sad: :frustrated:

April 7th, 2007, 10:59 AM
Yup, but once you worked through the honking with desensitization training and counter-conditioning ~ you can introduce the gunshot sounds.

April 7th, 2007, 11:18 AM
K thanks a million !:thumbs up

April 10th, 2007, 09:22 PM
Is there any way you could get an audio tape of geese honking/gunshots? Then play the tape really low at first (lower than you are able to hear at first, dogs hearing is so sensitive) and play with the dog and feed him treats while the tape is playing. Then slowly increase the volume over the course of a few weeks. If at any time he is showing signs of stress, go back to the volume setting he can handle, and increase it even more slowly. Eventually (may take weeks, or even longer depending on how strong his negative feelings to the noises are) you should be able to play the tape full volume, as loud as the noises would be naturally. Make sure when you are outside you have treats or a favorite toy to counter condition.
The tape thing is what we do for thunderphobia, so it may be worth a try.

April 11th, 2007, 01:24 AM
Aww, poor Meik! I hope the rescue remedy works a little. Poor doggy!