I received this communication from Marsha T. Wallace via our Tellington Training message boards on Yahoo. She reports an interesting and effective combination of Turtle TTouches and the body wrap for her severely thunderstorm-sensitive Dachshund Gracie. If your dog suffers from the same symptoms as Gracie, consider trying what Marsha has done.
My doxie Gracie used to have tremendous storm anxiety. She would start so early, even just with barometric pressure dropping, that my friends would call to see if Gracie was predicting rain (or snow). She used to pant, drool, shiver, pace and hide. Tried all sorts of things, including the face wrap, body wrap, music, melatonin, a thin coat with metallic threads on the underside. Only Xanax worked when she was bad. She also got BETTER when I started seeing Pam Wanveer work with her, but still sometimes Gracie would wake me up from sleeping with the bed feeling like it had “magic fingers.”
Then during our training with Debbie Potts you could see this otherwise cocky and confident dog who was a great “stuffie” substitite/practice dog, start to transform to something more gelatinous.
“Uh,oh” I thought, as the dark clouds rolled in.
Debbie calmly took Gracie and started doing “Turtle TTouches” –- simultaneous Abalone TTouches over both shoulders. Then she added the head wrap, which we since modified a bit. It was ..as you all surmised by now (or witnessed), magic.
Now she almost goes into a coma..it takes 5-10 minutes max.
So here are two pictures of Gracie, one as a thunderstorm was brewing, and another 10 minutes later when she was snoring, It started to rain, I donned her wraps while she was in her “dark” crate; Ten minutes later, she walked into the kitchen to see what I was eating. I carried her upstairs and put her on the bed as I dressed, and before I could take the wrap off….Gracie was asleep. She shifted during sleep so the body wrap is a little higher up on the chest than when she started. What you can’t see is how I crossed the wrap so that each ear was essentially loosely enclosed as the wrap criss crossed her head.
— Marsha T Wallace, MD
Chair, English Cocker Spaniel Club of America