January 7, 2013

White Dog has been very patient the past few days with Quinn as we struggle to get him back in balance. He has been suffering from nightly manic episodes and almost a child's fear of the dark (or maybe it is nightmares). In any case we have left a small night light on in the office where he and Nuka generally sleep but that has not proven to be enough by itself.

So we have brought The Other White Dog up onto the bed to rest between us (much like a parent reassures their frightened child) to pet him and speak softly until he is calmer and lulled nearly to sleep. Steve then gently carries our boy to his favorite sleeping spot and lies on the floor with him until he truly falls into a deep sleep. It seems to work without further drugging him.

White Dog has never shared bed privileges with any of the WDA yet seems to understand. She shifts her usual position against my legs to give Quinn space and goes to sleep without a fuss. When Steve moves him, WD returns to our normal arrangement.

As my voice has returned I have developed a cough that comes in spasms, part of the recovery process I am hoping. But my bursts made our frightened boy more nervous last night as we cuddled together. WD sensing his distress actually moved so that she, too, could lie touching his flank. It felt very pack-like. I ended up sitting with my back against the headboard which lessened the coughing; Quinn lay next to me with his head in my lap; WD carved out a space between my legs.

It took about an hour but Quinn finally relaxed enough to be drowsy and Steve carried him to his sleep spot. Nuka took up watch, resettling with her back against Quinn's and there they spent a quiet remainder of the night with no further pacing.

Dr. Julia has suggested another tweak to his medication and perhaps the purchase of a Thundershirt for Quinn to wear at night to ward off the fear. The momma in me believes that no shirt will take the place of my arms around him, but the idea of uninterrupted sleep is making the experiment a serious consideration. On an intellectual level I am a bit skeptical because so many in this community have seen little success with the Thundershirt. I welcome your thoughts.


Jo's World said...

How big is The Mighty Quinn? Find him a snugly fitting Tee Shirt, or one that you can sew a good sized seam down the front, back and sides. One that belonged to Steve or Sue would make him feel at home and help him settle down, I think, , ,maybe. Just that it would hold him tight. Also others have recommended a Wide Ace bandage that starts at the neck, crosses under arms and wrap his chest and tummy area securely. I will try and find a web page for this last thing and send it on.Stella had a thunder shirt and it helped her very briefly, but was not worth the cost to us. It was useless in hot weather when we would get the storms.

Jo, Stella and Zkhat

Kari in Vegas said...

Poor Quinn. Sending my love

Stop on by for a visit

GOOSE said...

Oh poor Quinn. I hope you find a solution. I have never used a Thunder shirt so I can't say if it would help or not.

Jeanne Pursell said...

We understand your dilemma with the Thunder Shirt. Mama has been trying to decide whether to get one for LadyBug when she is paralyzed with fear over the thunder storms. It is a lot of money to put out if it does not work...and it doesn't on some dogs...but on some it does! Good luck and we hope that Quinn is feeling better and that you are able to get some rest! xoxo Chloe and LadyBug

Alien said...

Warm arms wrapped tight can do magic.


Amber DaWeenie said...

We're sending lots of PawHugs to Quinn.

As for the Thundershirt...the jury is still out on that one. We have two pack members (Rusty and Annie) who are very scared of rain or even the threat of rain. I've tried the shirt on both. It seems to help Rusty a bit but not sure if there's much change in Annie.

Brian said...

We all send our best purrs and gentle hugs to dear sweet Quinn.

Random Felines said...

Poor Quinn.....we hope that you can find a happy balance for him. :)

KB said...

The Thundershirt seems like it helps Shyla. I have her wear it when she's going to scary places in town. I also had her wear it the first time that she had to be separated from me at the vet... and it seemed like it helped. Of course, as a scientist, I know that I don't have a "control" - i.e., I cannot repeat exactly the same thing at the same time without the thundershirt to know whether it truly helped.

There's a study going on in my area looking a physiological stress indicators with and without the thundershirt in fear-prone dogs. It will be interesting to see how it turns out.

The other great thing is that it has a 30 day money-back guarantee. If you don't think it helped, you can return it within a month.

It seems worth a try to me!

I also give Shyla melatonin when we're heading to someplace scary but you probably don't want to add anything to Quinn's program without your vet's approval.

Hope that you're getting better!

Tweedles -- that's me said...

We are keeping our paws crossed for Quinn. There must be something to help.

Siku Marie, White Dog said...

Jo, Quinn is 35lbs. Steve's t-shirts are a bit big but last night we put his smallest one (from Jr HS, yes Steve is a hoarder)and rubberbanded fistfuls on the back where it would not affect his comfort.

KB, the money back guarantee makes trying the Thundershirt much more attractive in fact we went today but they were out of his size (more by Friday). So we are going to see.

But Alien, momma TOTALLY agrees that there is no magic more powerful than momma arms wrapped tight! So we will not be stopping that.