Horrible RV ride... anxiety/help?!

JacksonsMom

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#1
Sooo we drove the RV to Florida over the course of 2 days... Think we prob did about 7-8 hours of driving each day.

Jackson was a NERVOUS WRECK nearly the entire time. He's fine in a car for long distances, he's fine in the RV when it's not moving, and actually he's been fine in the RV for short trips (2-3 hour drives) in the past, he would always take 30 mins to calm down and then be ok, but this trip he was miserable... panting obsessively, pacing, wouldn't sit still, shaking... just horrible. It wasn't until the last hour he finally gave in and laid down on my lap.

I tried the back bedroom and closed the door thinking he would lay on the bed. I think it was worse. Tried leashing him with me on the couch so he couldn't move. He would only ever lay still for about 5 mins at a time usually.

I think it was the noise more than anything, we were going fairly fast all the way down 95 and the bumps were terrible for 50% of the drive so every little bump we went over seems much bigger in the RV plus it's just loud in the RV. So I think more than anything it was the bumps causing the stress. He would finally lay down and be calm on smoother roads and then the minute we went over a bridge or anything loud... he would panic again.

I ordered Rescue Remedy and these https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001AT9B8M/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1 to ship to our FL address for the ride home next Monday, but no idea if they'll actually help. I heard good things about RR.

Was going to maybe purchase a car seat at the local petsmart or walmart if they have them, he does like his car seat a lot but I didn't bring it due to lack of space. He can't be confined to a crate or anything, makes it 10x worse.

He's having a blast while we're here and is not stressed at all but I'm worried about suffering him through the long ride home again. :(
 

Southpaw

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#3
I was gonna suggest a thundershirt too. Lavender oil helps with Cajun (a dab behind each ear). You can try ALL THE THINGS at the same time too lol.

Will he take food when he's like that? Could you work on some fun training to get him in a different state of mind?
 

Beanie

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#4
I haven't had much luck with RR and I ordered those supplements for Payton to try and chill him out at trials, just to take the edge off, but they didn't do anything. I haven't tried them on Pepper although I still have some, I guess I should give that a shot. Nothing seems to touch Payton.

My sister used to Ace Happy and Kota for car rides because they would panic and Happy would whine non-stop, she just told me this weekend that Ace just made them sleep the entire way. I know there was discussion recently in the health forum about Ace and an alternative but I can't remember what the alternative med was...
 

JacksonsMom

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I was gonna suggest a thundershirt too. Lavender oil helps with Cajun (a dab behind each ear). You can try ALL THE THINGS at the same time too lol.

Will he take food when he's like that? Could you work on some fun training to get him in a different state of mind?
That's what amazed me... Jax is a FOOD HOUND, I can even get him to take cheese or chicken etc during thunder storms which he hates, but he wouldn't even take a chicken nugget I had OR Cheese so he was beyond stressed. I could try a thundershirt, but I remember trying it in the past for thunder storms and it didn't do much. I'm definitely going to be just like trying anything I can possibly find that won't hurt him LOL. I'll prob do a petsmart stop and just buy ALLTHEDRUGS and sprays hahaha. Thanks tho I'll try lavaender oil.
 

JacksonsMom

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I haven't had much luck with RR and I ordered those supplements for Payton to try and chill him out at trials, just to take the edge off, but they didn't do anything. I haven't tried them on Pepper although I still have some, I guess I should give that a shot. Nothing seems to touch Payton.

My sister used to Ace Happy and Kota for car rides because they would panic and Happy would whine non-stop, she just told me this weekend that Ace just made them sleep the entire way. I know there was discussion recently in the health forum about Ace and an alternative but I can't remember what the alternative med was...
thanks, I'll look into Ace and try and find the alternative too!
 

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#7

JacksonsMom

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Hmm I wonder if my vet would be able to get a prescription for this though, I dont know if it would get here on time from MD to FL.

Edit duh I just thought of something. I wonder if they could call in a prescription to a regular pharmacy here like a Walgreens that I could pick up. Don't know if vets do that kind of stuff though.
 
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Southpaw

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#9
Hmm I wonder if my vet would be able to get a prescription for this though, I dont know if it would get here on time from MD to FL.
We get clients that call us from out of state (usually folks who head south for the winter), and for something like this we'd have no problem calling a prescription into a pharmacy or something as long as they're current on their annual exam.

Unfortunately some of it can be trial and error. I'm not a huge fan of ace on its own, just because the dog is still anxious, they're just too sedate to do anything about it. Alprazolam would probably be the next most common option but my only personal experience with that is with Cajun, and I don't feel like it takes the edge off for her (if anything it might actually make her more weird and sensitive). You can combine those 2 meds so you have some sedation and the anti-anxiety effects, which is what I used to have to do for trimming Cajun's nails, and it worked well for that.
 
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#11
Personally I've come to prefer trazodone to alprazolam, I think it works more consistently. Alprazolam is great for individual dogs when it works, but IME it's really hit or miss for Dogs with a captital D.
 

SpringerLover

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When I brought Bailey to the Veterinary Behaviorist she said the two most recommended meds for this type of situation were trazadone (already mentioned) and clonidine. My dog takes Clonidine as needed and I really like the results. We have started using it at work as well for very specific cases.
 

JacksonsMom

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#13
Can maybe drowning out the noise help?
I tried to eliminate all rattling noises (things in the sink, oven, microwave etc when driving) or anything that was making noise as best as I could but it's kind of like being in a shaky bus lol. The only thing I could think of is somehow getting him ear muffs of sorts but I doubt he would keep them on lol.
 

JacksonsMom

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Personally I've come to prefer trazodone to alprazolam, I think it works more consistently. Alprazolam is great for individual dogs when it works, but IME it's really hit or miss for Dogs with a captital D.
Darn, wish I would have seen this before I called. Our vet is calling him in alprazolam to the local Walgreens.

I was going to use that in conjuction with the Rescue Remedy (no idea if that'll do anything, but I figure it's worth a shot).

I was going to give him a dose of alprazolam the night before we leave, just to make sure there's no negative effects.

I think I'd feel bad calling back up to vets again since I believe she already called in the rx. So crossing my fingers it works!

Do you think for Jackson though that Alprazolam won't do anything? Arghhh tough decision. I just want him to be decently comfortable on the drive home.
 
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#15
Just try the alprazolam. There's absolutely nothing wrong with it, I just feel that it is somewhat inconsistent across dogs - some dogs respond great, others not at all. While I can pretty much count on trazodone to work in almost every dog.
 

JacksonsMom

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Just try the alprazolam. There's absolutely nothing wrong with it, I just feel that it is somewhat inconsistent across dogs - some dogs respond great, others not at all. While I can pretty much count on trazodone to work in almost every dog.
Thanks so much!
 

pinkspore

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#18
I know there exist little hood things groomers use to muffle the dryer for noise-sensitive dogs. It's not earmuffs, more like a baclava or snood that goes around their ears. Something like that might help him with the noise.
 

JacksonsMom

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#19
Can you put him in a crate, and cover it?
I think he would literally have a heart attack if I did this :p But I wish.

So we just started our journey back home and we're only 30 mins into it, gave him .05 mg of the alprazolam plus four drops of Rescue Remedy on a treat and rubbed it in his ears.

He's a *little* bit calmer, not so much pacing, but still a lot of panting, little bit of shaking. I gave it to him about 45 mins before we drove off. I'm either hoping things get better after a few hours or just... nothing works on my dog. lol... but like I said, I would say I see a little improvement. I was hoping it would take the edge off a bit more.
 

JessLough

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#20
I think he would literally have a heart attack if I did this :p But I wish.

So we just started our journey back home and we're only 30 mins into it, gave him .05 mg of the alprazolam plus four drops of Rescue Remedy on a treat and rubbed it in his ears.

He's a *little* bit calmer, not so much pacing, but still a lot of panting, little bit of shaking. I gave it to him about 45 mins before we drove off. I'm either hoping things get better after a few hours or just... nothing works on my dog. lol... but like I said, I would say I see a little improvement. I was hoping it would take the edge off a bit more.
Glad you're seeing a little improvement, at least!

If it doesn't work, I wouldn't say nothing works on him, though. I mean, you've tried rescue remedy and one medication :p
 

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