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Discussion Starter #1
Has anyone any experience using valium to treat anxiety/fear in dogs? Our area is due for the 17 year cicadas in May. This is supposed to be an unusually heavy infestation, lasting approx. 6 weeks. My problem: Spencer is DEATHLY afraid of flying/buzzing insects. If even one fly gets in the house, he flips out -- runs, hides, shakes, drools. He has even gotten physically sick in the past -- vomiting & diarrhea. I spoke with the vet today about it. He said there are various medications to try, but he felt Valium would have the best results with the least risk. We are still about 1 1/2 months from the cicada emergence, but I am gathering info, in order to make the best decision for Spencer. Thanks for any input.
Amy
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I'm with you Joan! ;)

Trudi, I did ask about Clomicalm & a few other similar meds I read about. He said these meds were more for behavior modification, usually prescribed for things like separation anxiety. Since Spencer's problem was going to be "short term," he did not think these meds were the best choice. I wanted to tell him I didn't think 6 weeks was "short term" with a drooling, shaking & terrified dog! ;) Besides, some of these meds take up to 6 weeks to become fully effective, which means he would have to start now & be medicated for 12 or more weeks. I hate to medicate him more than I have to.

People keep telling me to wait & see, maybe Spencer won't be as afraid as I think he will be. I just know how he acts when a fly gets near him, and these things are at least 10 times bigger & louder than flies. The way I see it, he is going to be 10 times more afraid! Poor boy, the cicadas only come every 17 years & he has had the misfortune of being born when he will get to experience them!

[ March 27, 2004, 05:31 PM: Message edited by: Sunny ]
 

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Poor guy. Is he more sensitive to the sight or the sound? If it's sound, you might be able to find some recordings to use to help desensitize him.
 

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Sunny,

I've actually thought about tranqs or ??? for Yogi. He's naturally shy and somewhat anxious, and when we have thunderstorms (which is all the time this time of year :(
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for the replies Betsy & Biscuit.

I had not thought of using a tape for desensitization, but I may try it. The sight of flies bother him too, but every little thing might help!

Biscuit, you are right about the length being a problem. There is just going to be no escape for 6 weeks. Even in the house, I think you will be able to hear them. Supposedly, they will be so loud that when outside, you will not be able to carry on a converstion in a normal tone of voice.

I am actually playing with the idea of leaving town if it gets too bad. I am a teacher, and school will be out about 2 weeks into cicada season. If medication does not help Spencer, I just might pack him & Sadie up and find a dog friendly hotel in a cicada free zone!
 

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I heard that we were in the 17 year cicada season. Those buggers are loud when there is just 1 or 2 around. I hadn't really considered what it would be like for Gus with, say, 100 around. :( He was outside a few weeks ago when there was a lone thunderboom. I never saw him scrabble around like he did then.

Betsy has the bug phobia too. She'll stare at the ceiling for DAYS if there had been a bug in the house for only a few minutes. And if you make a buzzing sound, she bolts out of the room like a bat out of hell.
 

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Tiny, I hope for Gus's sake you only have 100! I don't know why, but Cincinnati is supposed to be a cicada hotbed. A local professor who specializes in them (what does he do in between the 17 year periods? :roll: ) says the Cincinnati area will see about 5 BILLION of them. I remember the last time they were here, they literally piled up in corners & against walls and they were LOUD. At the time, they were not a concern to me. I was in college & dogless. Local news has run many stories on them. They have featured people who are planning a visit here just to see them. And of course there are clubs forming & parties being planned with all kinds of cicada dishes to eat -- YUCK! That's what I expect Sadie to do with them, eat like someone left a never ending box of bones open. That I do remember from the last time -- dogs feasted on them. Ewwww.
 

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Hmm... Last time it happened around here, I was 13 years old. I don't remember seeing or hearing an excessive amount of big bugs. And since I'm a bit of a bug-a-phobe myself, I probably would have noticed. :p

I know my county is one that is slated to have the big bug visit. Actually, my county has a few overlapping broods, so we are supposed to have another emergence in 9 years and yet another in 13 years. I don't remember a huge amount of cicadas when I was 17 or when I was 22, so maybe there just aren't a whole lot of them around here. Our soil is this thick red clay only a few inches down, so maybe cicada babies have trouble digging into it. Heck, that's fine by me. If I were a dog, I'd hide from those big bugs myself!
 

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Anyone from Hawaii that has trouble with their hound and those huge, buzzing, flying roaches?? They used to freak me out and can't imagine how a pup would react. My cats used to catch them and eat them GROSS!
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Now while I don't like the cicadas, the thought of flying roaches really freaks me out. Thank God we don't have that problem here!

Tiny, we'll have to compare notes about how many cicadas we have when they finally arrive. I bet the soil does make a difference. We don't have that red clay soil here. I also heard that the type & amount of trees has something to do with it. I don't think they feed much when they are here, but it has something to do with the females laying their eggs in the trees.
 
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