Dogs can be scared of a variety of nonsensical (and sensical) things, some of which may defy reason (though others, like the Veterinarian are perfectly understandable). My dog, a neurotic yet lovable Bichon, has some puzzling albeit humorous anxieties. Here’s a quick compilation of a few of the things that Dingo fears:
Driving in the car when it’s raining. Or snowing. Like the true old lady that she is, she does not enjoy driving in inclement weather. She’s also scared of windshield wipers. The two may be linked but they are definitely two distinct and separate fears.
My son’s farts. I kid you not, if my son farts, she runs out of the room scared (sometimes I do too but not due to the noise!).
Driving through tunnels (bridges are okay).
Driving on the highway. She’s fine in the car as long as we maintain a speed below approximately 60MPH.
The groomer. She also has an intense dislike of having her paws touched. This likely exacerbates her fear of the groomer. The poor groomers definitely think she’s the devil. I can tell by the looks of disapproval that they try to mask when I drop her off. I don’t blame them for this at all. I’m well aware that she’s their worst nightmare. They earn every penny they charge me.
The Vet (that’s a given). The only dog I’ve ever known to not fear the Vet was a big, dumb Lab who didn’t mind going because they showered him with copious amounts of treats.
Baths. Ironically, Dingo loves the water but she hates to be bathed, showered, or sprayed down with the hose. I can’t really blame her, though my fiancé seems to think it odd… But I TOTALLY get it. All types of water are not created equal.
Fire. She’s also scared of smoke. If we are camping and have a fire going or if the fire pit we use in the summer in our yard is ablaze she won’t come closer than 20 feet to the flames. Self preservation at its finest.
The fire alarm/carbon monoxide detector when they go off. Inconsolable for this.
Fireworks. Thunder. Loud, booming noises with no known cause are usually followed by heavy panting and shaking.
Abrupt yelling or clapping, specifically at the TV during a football game. This is a minor fear. She’ll look up and move away from the offender but will not shake or pant for this one. She’s very brave.
The sound The Beats Pill (by Dr Dre!) makes when you turn it on. This may have something to do with my fiancé waving it above her head to get a reaction out of her but I digress…
None of these fears are so severe that they limit my dog’s quality of life so for the most part, we just deal. However, there are some natural herbal remedies that seem to really help calm her down for long car rides or trips to the Vet. There’s a number on the market so for additional information on what would be best for your dog I would suggest contacting Diane Dewberry of The Healthy Animal: http://www.thehealthyanimal.com/
Now I want to hear from you! What is your dog scared of? Anything funny or humorous? Or maybe it’s something that’s causing you issues and you’de like some suggestions on how to deal with it. We are here to help (or laugh along with you). Finally, if you’re dog is a complete “basketcase” (that’s the technical term) and you are in need of serious training or guidance, please feel to email me directly for a private and confidential behavioral assessment: firstname.lastname@example.org. I am not a trainer, but I can point you in the right direction.