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Anxiety/Panic Attacks

luckypenny
April 16th, 2008, 08:01 AM
After more than a year without, Lucky's back on his meds, this time Amitriptyline instead of the Clomicalm. I think last Friday was the calm before the storm :sad: . He's been having full-blown panic attacks, yesterday was the worst. All it took was for the wind to blow a couple of leaves past him and he totally lost control. We didn't even make it to the top of the street before I had to hold him tight for 10 minutes in order for him to calm enough before returning home.

Our vet was able to see us yesterday afternoon. I love this guy. He too adopted two dogs; one who had severe separation anxiety, and his most recent with fear anxiety. So he understands.

Anyhow, just thought I'd share in case there's anyone else out there who's in the same situation.

clm
April 16th, 2008, 10:02 AM
Poor Lucky. Is he always going to have to stay on meds for this do you think? Is it as hard for dogs to get off the meds as it is for people?

Cindy

pitgrrl
April 16th, 2008, 10:12 AM
That sucks. I hope the meds help him out.

I probably missed all the background on this, but is it specific stuff that triggers the anxiety, or just generally anxious phases/periods?

Kristin7
April 16th, 2008, 11:20 AM
poor Lucky :sad: I am not sure what has been tried or not, but something that has worked for me has been fish oil supplements. Since I started taking it, my anxiety attacks in the middle of the night have completely stopped and now I get ~8 hrs of sleep a night, as compared with 3 or 4. :sleepy: Do you give Lucky fish oil? If not, you may want to research it, who knows, could help, though sounds like your dog needs more heavy duty stuff. In humans, anyway, it can be as effective as Prozac.

rainbow
April 16th, 2008, 12:24 PM
Awwww.....poor Lucky :sad: and poor you. :grouphug:

Have you ever tried melatonin for him? .....

http://www.canine-epilepsy-guardian-angels.com/melatonin.htm

luckypenny
April 16th, 2008, 01:44 PM
Is he always going to have to stay on meds for this do you think? Is it as hard for dogs to get off the meds as it is for people?


I wouldn't want to use any meds long-term unless deemed absolutely necessary. We used the Clomicalm, for approx. 6 months, not long after we brought him home to help treat his severe s/a. In combination with re-conditioning, crate-training (took 3 months in all), a juggling of my work schedule, Penny joining our family 3 months later, and just generally settling in, it seemed to work. He still has some s/a but at least it's manageable now and we don't have to worry about his incessant howling, digging holes in my mattress, shredding my curtains and comforters, and ripping up ceramic tiles by the front door :eek:. He really has come a long way in those respects, thank dog :pray: .

This med is more of an anti-depressant/anti-anxiety type rather than something like Valium. We will only use the minimum amount required to help calm him enough to enable us to continue to help him with his issues. If weaned off the meds gradually over a period of 6-8 weeks, we shouldn't have any problems as we didn't with the Clomicalm.

Winston
April 16th, 2008, 01:55 PM
Hey LP II just wanted to say that I too take Amitrypaline. I was diagnosed with Fibermyalga last year. It is a very painful thing. I would wake up all the time in pain, not sleeping properly etc etc very stressful..Anyway, I take 1 10mg pill evry night and I have been feeling much better. I can honestly say I have it to be very helpful...Not sure if it will work the same in a dog? I certainly hope so! and can I say You are a wonderful Mom to help your dog in this way! as you know many people give up!!!

Cheers
Cindy

luckypenny
April 16th, 2008, 02:09 PM
... is it specific stuff that triggers the anxiety, or just generally anxious phases/periods?

Both specific and global. Specific stuff in the home, but not at all times. For example, on the rare occasion, I'll call him to me for a pat or a treat and he panics ie., backs into a corner cowering with his tail between his legs and showing his submissive smile. This was the norm when he first came home with us, then it nearly dissappeared entirely, and now it's increasing again. The one time I can guarantee a panic reacton is if visitors don't give him his space and try to pet or talk to him when they come into our home or when ppl meet him on the street.

His vet agrees with me that it's more of a global anxiety. He's just a very wound up and jumpy kind of guy. We can deal with it and live with it, but when he goes full loco because of birds tweeting, leaves blowing, or he suddenly behaves on leash as if I'm about to beat him silly :confused: , etc., I think we need a little extra help :o .

luckypenny
April 16th, 2008, 02:16 PM
I am not sure what has been tried or not, but something that has worked for me has been fish oil supplements. Since I started taking it, my anxiety attacks in the middle of the night have completely stopped and now I get ~8 hrs of sleep a night, as compared with 3 or 4. :sleepy: Do you give Lucky fish oil?

We don't give him fish oil supplements only because he's fed RAW and raw fish on a regular basis. I'm so glad it's worked for you :thumbs up . We used it with our older son when we decided to forego the Ritalin and look for more 'natural' ways to help him when his pediatrician and teachers said he had ADHD :rolleyes: as a young boy.

luckypenny
April 16th, 2008, 02:21 PM
Have you ever tried melatonin for him? .....
http://www.canine-epilepsy-guardian-angels.com/melatonin.htm

That was an interesting read Rainbow. Thank you. I looked at the link and then looked up additional info on it. If I'm not mistaken, I think he's already getting some through several of the herbs I add to the dogs' diets, (and brain :yuck: ). I'll certainly be looking into it more carefully.

rainbow
April 16th, 2008, 02:32 PM
That was an interesting read Rainbow. Thank you. I looked at the link and then looked up additional info on it. If I'm not mistaken, I think he's already getting some through several of the herbs I add to the dogs' diets, (and brain :yuck: ). I'll certainly be looking into it more carefully.

Do you think that it's in high enough concentrations in the herbs he's already getting?

luckypenny
April 16th, 2008, 02:33 PM
Hey LP II just wanted to say that I too take Amitrypaline. I was diagnosed with Fibermyalga last year. It is a very painful thing. I would wake up all the time in pain, not sleeping properly etc etc very stressful..Anyway, I take 1 10mg pill evry night and I have been feeling much better. I can honestly say I have it to be very helpful...Not sure if it will work the same in a dog? I certainly hope so! and can I say You are a wonderful Mom to help your dog in this way! as you know many people give up!!!

I was prescribed something similar several years ago to help cope with severe pain associated with osteo-arthritis of the spine. I'm relieved and happy it's working for you. I couldn't deal with the side-effects :o . Not all ppl experience them, I know, but I couldn't continue.

Funny how an anti-depressant is often prescribed for pain relief as well. I initially thought my doctor or pharmacist had made a mistake when I researched it.

luckypenny
April 16th, 2008, 02:44 PM
I don't know Rainbow, I'm trying to do the math now :laughing: . Care to help out cuz I'm having a bit of trouble :o :D ?

http://www.dietaryfiberfood.com/melatonin-natural-sources.php

Amongst other herbs, they get St. Johnís Wort (flower), Feverfew (don't know which leaf though), approx. 1/4 tsp each per week. They also get 1-2 tsp of flaxseed oil (though not Penny), 1 tsp of raw ginger, and maybe 3/4 of a banana per week as well.

I'm not quite sure how to do the calculations :o.

Oh, I found on another site that walnuts are a rich natural source of melatonin as well. I don't know if that would be ok to feed the dogs with once in a while though.

rainbow
April 16th, 2008, 02:52 PM
HA HA......sorry but I'm not good at the calculations either. :D

Does Lucky need those supplements for other things? Or can you stop them and try the melatonin to see if it works since it does have a 80% succes rate.

I wouldn't feed the walnuts as they are considered moderately toxic as they can cause gastroenteritis.

rainbow
April 16th, 2008, 02:58 PM
:lightbulb: You could give her the melatonin at a lesser dose than is recommended. :shrug:

luckypenny
April 16th, 2008, 03:04 PM
I mix the herbs in with their lightly steamed veggies, blend, and freeze in ice cube trays. They get all sorts of herbs :o, more of a supplement than for any one thing in particular. Other than Calendula...Penny gets to enjoy a tea for her mildly yeasty ears and a tonic that I apply to them. I just started with this so I hope we'll see an improvement soon. I don't believe I give enough of other herbs to have any therapeutic effects. I'll definately be looking into it further within the next few days.

luckypenny
April 16th, 2008, 03:11 PM
:lightbulb: You could give her the melatonin at a lesser dose than is recommended. :shrug:

You mean "him" :D ?

The recommended doses vary according to the sites I've seen so far, from .5 to 3mg :shrug: .

I was thinking...(ouch! LOL)... melatonin is produced in the pineal gland and in the gastrointestinal tract. How do I know for certain he's not producing enough? And in some countries, it's available by prescription only. In others, it's not permitted at all :shrug: . I think I need to look into it more before deciding to try it :o , just to be certain.

Do you know anyone who's used it personally?

rainbow
April 16th, 2008, 03:24 PM
Ooooops :o Sorry Lucky ......there is no question about your manhood. :D

Do you get the Whole Dog Journal? .....

The April 2000 issue of The Whole Dog Journal has a comprehensive five page article on remedies that do not use drugs. The May 2000 issue has a complete article on melatonin and other holistic phobia remedies. To purchase a copy, contact The Whole Dog Journal at (800) 424-7887 or customer_service@belvoir.com. This is an excellent publication that does not accept any advertising.

That quote was from this website....

http://www.ygrr.org/doginfo/behavior-phobia.html

They also list some other homeopathic remedies and flower essences as well as other options.

luckypenny
April 16th, 2008, 03:31 PM
I do get it (it's only been 3 months since I've subscribed though). I'll order the back issue asap to get that info.

rainbow
April 16th, 2008, 03:36 PM
Maybe you can get some answers to your questions from that first site I posted. :shrug:

Their email address is EpilepsyAnswers at aol dot com

pitgrrl
April 16th, 2008, 05:11 PM
You mean "him" :D ?

The recommended doses vary according to the sites I've seen so far, from .5 to 3mg :shrug: .

I was thinking...(ouch! LOL)... melatonin is produced in the pineal gland and in the gastrointestinal tract. How do I know for certain he's not producing enough? And in some countries, it's available by prescription only. In others, it's not permitted at all :shrug: . I think I need to look into it more before deciding to try it :o , just to be certain.

Do you know anyone who's used it personally?

It is available in Canada though. You can get it at the Provigo :laughing:

I tried it with Streets and basically saw zero effect, but I've heard that many have great success with it :shrug:

rainbow
April 19th, 2008, 12:49 PM
LP, how is Lucky doing? :fingerscr :goodvibes:

luckypenny
April 19th, 2008, 01:01 PM
Don't know if the meds could possibly work this fast but he is a little more relaxed. He does seem to be dreaming alot though...his facial expressions keep changing while he's napping and he kicks his legs often while asleep.

Funny, as he's more relaxed, so are the girls. They're all more responsive to us when they're highly aroused (usually when there's a dog in the park next door). Dh and I are taking the re-conditioning exercises to the max now. :fingerscr we see continued improvement.

rainbow
April 19th, 2008, 01:33 PM
The dreaming, etc. is probably a side effect of the amitriptyline. According to this website the onset of effect is 1-6 weeks though ....


http://www.cpt-training.com/Article_4.asp

luckypenny
April 19th, 2008, 01:40 PM
Easy to understand article Rainbow. Thank you :) .

Lethargy is stated as one of the side effects so that's what I've probably mistaken his being more relaxed with :o . Although I wouldn't say he's very lethagic, he is lazing around more than usual :shrug: .