Does your Cockapoo suffer from anxiety problems, big or small? Does it crawl into the smallest space available or become a shivering wreck with the mere approach of a storm or firework going off if so, will a thunder jacket work for you?
We have one for Luna during firework season, I think it helps, but I am not sure.
Thunder/Anxiety jacket and what it is
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Also referred to as a thunder shirt or anxiety coat, many dog owners swear by them to help their beloved dog through a time of fear and stress; they are not just for extreme stress or anxiety either, nor is it just for thunderstorms, as the name suggests.
Some of you may never have heard of a thunder jacket for dogs, so what is it exactly? A thunder jacket is a garment worn when a dog shows some form of stress or anxiety, whether from noise phobia, strange surroundings or a storm etc. It can be adjusted to fit snugly, giving the pet, cats, and dogs a feeling of security.
The thunder jacket and its uses
Unlike us mere humans, a dog senses a storm long before it arrives. This is because it picks up on the change in the barometric pressure, so if your Cockapoo is showing signs of anxiety and you are unsure why, check to see if you have a storm on the way.
Anxiety jackets are designed to make your dog feel secure and safe, worn just as a coat or jumper would be if it is possible, you should put it on before the dog becomes anxious; in other words, if you see a weather forecast telling you of storms ahead or know there is a firework display due to happen then get them settled into their jacket beforehand.
They are made with breathable material and designed to be close-fitting for light pressure and can be worn for prolonged periods. Still, it is generally recommended that you take it off for short breaks, about 10 minutes, every 1-2 hours, to avoid any irritation being caused.
Whether your Cockapoo suffers from noise phobia, fireworks, storms or separation disorder, you may find a thunder jacket for dogs is just what you have been looking for and could help ease any anxiety your dog or cat is feeling.
As with anything new to dogs, you must introduce the use of a thunder jacket for dogs gradually. Get them used to the idea first. Each time you show the jacket, give them a fuss, play with their favourite toy or provide them with a treat. This will get them to associate the jacket with something nice and help you on your way.
When you feel they are comfortable with the new thunder jacket, gradually start putting it on, maybe not even completely at first. The last thing you want to do is give your Cockapoo a bad experience the first time you try to get them to wear it.
Please note if you have an old or infirm Cockapoo or dog, you should always check with your vet before using anything new; this also applies to using a thunder jacket.
The thunder jacket and how it works
No matter what the reason is for the stress or anxiety, the thunder jacket for dogs works on the principle of wrapping your dog with comfortable and constant light pressure, not unlike a mother swaddling her newborn baby, giving them a feeling of being secure while calming and soothing them.
The even distribution of pressure across the animal’s back and sides act the same as a hug would for a person in distress; gentle and constant pressure is known to release endorphins, which promotes a feel-good factor within the cat or dog.
Even if they do not become fully relaxed, remember, the anxiety jacket may still be working and alleviating some of their anxiety; all dogs are different, making all levels of success different.
Does a thunder/anxiety jacket work for dogs?
There are no hard and fast answers to the question, I am afraid, as it seems to vary from animal to animal, but overall there is evidence that they do, with some dog owners saying they would not part with theirs and could not be without one when caring for their dog during stressful moments.
Look at it this way. It won’t harm dogs, so I say give it a go. You will never know until you try some, so many owners say it works for them, and some research that has been done states that after a few uses, up to 90% of dogs show some form of stress relief.
If you are unsure whether one would work for you, why not check out how to make your own? It is fast and easy to do, with plenty of videos and illustrations available online to show you how all you will need is durable, lightweight and breathable material.
Mike is the proud owner of a 7-year-old Cockapoo named Luna. He loves to share stories, tips and information about owning a Cockapoo. With over7 years of experience as an owner, Mike is passionate about helping others own and care for their dog.