Posted in blog, life, Pet

Life Update

Hey everyone! I hope everyone is doing well and you are all safe!

I wanted to do a little life update right now because I haven’t really updated you guys about what is happening in my life for a while. The biggest change which I mentioned only slightly is I moved away from Arizona to Washington State. I have been here for almost two months and wow, am I in love. Honestly I have always wanted to live in the Pacific Northwest and now here I am! The weather is the best part in my opinion. Give me rain and clouds every day and I will be forever happy. 

If you have been reading my blog for a while, you have heard about my dog Wallaby. He is a mini pinscher, chihuahua mix who we adopted almost one year ago. He was unfortunately abused before we adopted him so he has pretty bad anxiety and separation anxiety. When we moved out here to Washington, I was worried that such a change would have upset him but I was pleasantly surprised that Wallaby absolutely loves it up here. He actually has a huge backyard to run around all day and he lives close to his dog cousins (my boyfriend’s family dogs) so he is never alone anymore. The only time he has had an anxiety attack since we moved to Washington was during fourth of July because of all the fireworks. It is so nice to know that Wallaby is happy and feels safe; he is my sweet boy and I just want him to always be happy!

We all are living in a stressful time right now because of the pandemic and social unrest. I know that for me, as someone who has depression and an anxiety disorder, my mental health has been struggling a bit. I like having control over everything, it is just part of my personality but of course, right now there is no way to have any control over what is happening to our world. Because of all of these stressors, my boyfriend and I decided to take a small weekend trip to Leavenworth, Washington. I was pleased that all of the shops and restaurants there required people to wear masks and there were hand sanitizer stations in every shop and throughout the city. It was so nice to go somewhere for a mini vacation to relax and not think about my current unemployment, social unrest, and it was hopeful to see everyone in Leavenworth working together to be safe. 

Leavenworth was a perfect little town that made you feel like you were in a small German town. Every shop and restaurant created this amazing environment that transported you out of the USA to rural Germany. If you ever have a chance to go to Leavenworth, do it! You will not regret it all. 

Posted in blog, Dog, lifestyle, Pet, Separation Anxiety

Wallaby, the Anxious Dog

In August, my boyfriend and I adopted a beautiful, sweet dog named Wallaby. The humane society said he was a chihuahua/australian cattle dog mix but honestly I think he is more of a mini pinscher than a cattle dog! Pretty quickly we realized that Wallaby suffered from separation anxiety. Having a dog with social anxiety and separation anxiety can be tough. Knowing that you have to leave your dog alone when going to work, school, etc can be rough when you know they have these problems. For me, not only do I feel guilty leaving him alone when I know he is upset, I also get upset thinking about what he might have gone through before we adopted him. We know a little about his past before us and when we adopted him, Wallaby had just recovered from a broken jaw. Whoever abandoned him had most likely broken his poor jaw. Literally writing that just made me start tearing up. He is the sweetest boy in the world who loves his humans more than anything and to think he suffered like that, crushes my heart.

Over the last 6 months, we have observed several triggers that will scare him. Some are obvious; loud sounds, crashing sounds, fireworks. Others are a little more random, like if I even touch a broom or mop, he instantly cowards and hides. Also if a strange man comes close to him, he will start to shake, cry, and bark. Luckily, the more time we take him out to meet people and other dogs, the more confident he is getting and the fears that he had are slowly disappearing. 

During the first visit with his vet after the adoption, we explained to the vet all the behaviors that Wallaby had whenever he realized we were leaving. As soon as he sees us get our keys or even put socks on, he will start to shake pretty severely, then comes the jumping. He will jump on us hoping we will stay or at least take him with us. He will start nibbling at our hands and clothing as well. At this point, we usually notice that he is aroused, which is apparently common for dogs with separation anxiety. The worst thing that happened because of his anxiety was severe damage to our bedroom door. He had started scratching underneath the door in order to try and reach us so every time we would get home, wood and paint chips would be everywhere! 

The vet made us feel better about this situation, she suggested several techniques and ideas to help with his anxiety. The main one was CBD. I had heard that it could help humans with anxiety but I had no idea it would work for dogs as well! She also suggested reading a book called Decoding Your Dog: Explaining Common Dog Behaviors and How to Prevent or Change Unwanted Ones by American College of Veterinary Behaviorists. I am so glad she suggested that book because it gave some many tricks and ideas to help a dog with this condition. We bought him so CBD oil and give it to him in the mornings and an hour before we leave him alone. It was been a miracle worker. We also started working on some techniques that were mentioned in the book suggested by the vet. 

We will have had Wallaby for 7 months come January 6th. Wallaby still suffers from separation anxiety but it’s nowhere as severe as it was when he first got him. He has stopped damaging the bedroom door and the shaking has calmed down. He still jumps on us when he knows we are leaving but as soon as we get him to sit and say settle to him, he calms down. Since we have been taking out to interact with people and other dogs to places like PetSmart and dog parks, he has come out of his shell and enjoys getting attention from strangers and meeting dogs. 

Wallaby’s anxiety will probably always be a problem but at this point with the CBD oil and techniques we have implemented, his anxiety is manageable. If your dog has anxiety, social or separation, I highly recommend talking to your vet about CBD and reading the book, Decoding Your Dog. Knowing he is getting better has been such a relief for us and him too.

CBD oil we use: https://hempbombs.com/product/pet-cbd-oil-125mg/

Book: https://www.amazon.com/dp/0544334604/ref=cm_sw_em_r_mt_dp_U_fLuaEbPRAY3XH