Sunday, December 30, 2012

Diary of Lulu in a Thundershirt

This is Lulu.

She is so happy to be home to roll in her front lawn.

Lulu is wearing a Thundershirt. Why, you ask? Because Lulu has some problems:
  • She likes to bark at every dog she sees. A lot.
  • She likes to bark at every squirrel she sees.
  • She likes to bark at every cat she sees.
  • She likes to bark at every person who goes by on a bike, a scooter, a skateboard, a golfcart, or runs by.
  • She likes to bark at big trucks. Cars don't bother her though.
Lulu is in training and we are trying to deal with her issues. But my trainer let me borrow a Thundershirt for a week, and we are going to try it out and see if it helps.

What is a Thundershirt? The idea is to wrap the shirt around the dog, kind of like swaddling an infant. It's supposed to help the dog be less anxious, particularly by noise (like thunder. Hence the name).

While it does work for some pets (my trainer loves them), it doesn't work for all of them. Hence, the test.

So for the next week, Lulu and I are going to explore the Thundershirt, and see if it works for her.

Day 1:

My trainer put the Thundershirt on Lulu just before class. I don't know that I saw much change in her, but he said she was calmer. She did "settle down" reasonably well in front of class, so that is an improvement, whereas before we couldn't get her attention.

I brought her home and went to work. When I came home, I found her blanket on the floor in the living room -- far from the bedroom.

And Lulu's bed -- was hanging off my bed. And in the middle, was her Thundershirt.

I think what happened was the velcro on the shirt got stuck to the bed, and Lulu pulled it off to get free. So lesson to learn: if you get the Thundershirt, make sure the velcro is well-secured.

To read Day 2, go here.


  1. I never realized that Thundershirts were used for issues other than thunder & loud noises...will be interesting to see how the experiment proceeds

    1. It may not be a cure-all, but it's calming effect is what we are after. It's like when a doctor uses the side effect of a medication to treat an illness.


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