This tab is for all the dog lovers out there! We will frequently update articles about different breeds, fun facts, serious problems, and other interesting topics!
How They Work:
With its patent-pending design, Thundershirt's gentle, constant pressure has a dramatic calming effect for most dogs if they are anxious, fearful or over-excited. Based on surveys completed by over two thousand customers, over 80% of dogs show significant improvement in symptoms when using Thundershirt. Thundershirt is already helping tens of thousands of dogs around the world, and is recommended by thousands of veterinarians and dog trainers.
As for WHY Thundershirt's gentle pressure works to calm a dog, experts such as Dr. Temple Grandin believe that pressure has a calming effect on the nervous system. Using pressure to relieve anxiety has been a common practice for years. For example:
- Touch dog trainers use pressure to address a wide variety of anxieties.
- Veterinarians use pressure to relax cattle when they are administering vaccinations.
- People with autism use pressure to relieve their persistent anxiety.
- Children with certain behavioral problems use pressure shirts and weighted vests to relax and focus.
- Parents use swaddling to calm an inconsolable newborn infant.
How To Use Thundershirt
Thundershirt is an excellent treatment for most types of dog anxiety and fear issues. For many anxieties, we recommend just putting on a Thundershirt and observing the results (No training!). You very well may see significant improvement for noise, crate, travel, barking and others with absolutely no training. For more complicated anxiety cases, we recommend using Thundershirt as part of a behavior modification program.
One thing is for certain, for a very large percentage of dogs, Thundershirt's gentle, constant pressure has a terrific calming effect. This has obvious benefits for most types of anxiety. But Thundershirt is also a very useful tool for managing excitability or hyperactivity with strangers, on the leash, or in a training environment. Thundershirt's calming effect helps a dog to focus (or refocus) her energies in a more constructive direction, allowing training to be more effective.
Click on a subject from the list below for more detailed instructions for how best to use Thundershirt for various issues. Or visit our FAQ for answers to the most common questions. Or visit our new Thundershirt Training Center to learn more about how trainers are using Thundershirts with their clients. See below for more about the Training Center.
Before putting Thundershirt on your dog for the first time, we recommend offering a small amount of food to your dog using the Thundershirt as a "plate". Dogs typically become more comfortable and trusting of something that "brings" them food or anything that they associate with food. So this is an easy little trick to quickly create a positive association with Thundershirt for your dog.
Thundershirt has been developed to be very easy to put on. Just lay it over your dog's back and secure with the chest and torso straps. The Velcro fasteners make Thundershirt very adjustable to many different body shapes. See the illustrations and video for more information about how to put Thundershirt on. Or click here for the instructions included in the packaging.
Place the Thundershirt on your dog's back and wrap the Short Flap under the torso.Step 2
Wrap the Long Flap under the torso and secure with Velcro onto the short flap. Make a comfortable, but snug, fit. You should be able to easily slide your fingers between the Thundershirt and your dog's torso.Step 3
Wrap the Top Flap down onto the Long Flap and secure with Velcro. Adjust to improve the snug fit and keep Thundershirt securely in place.Step 4
Wrap the Chest Straps around the front of the dog and secure with Velcro. You should be able to easily slide your fingers under the Chest Straps and should not feel restricting around your dogs neck.
Dog Breeds - The History
Scientists have debated over the history and evolution of the domestic dog for hundreds of years. DogArticles.org gives you a summary of the most widespread and popular theories involed with the origin of the domestic dog.
Dogs today come in all shapes and sizes, this is believed to be a consequence of a vital point in evolution, that happened over 15,000 years ago - The Taming of the Grey Wolf. Scientists now believe that every dog breed is a descendant of the "Canis Lupus" - the "Grey Wolf".
It is believed that because humans and wolves were both hunters, they would have known of each others existance. Humans could easily have come across an abandoned wolf cub and taken it with them. As this wolf grew older it would be less fearful of humans and therefore be semi-tamed. A semi-tamed wolf would have been highly valued by a group of humans, they would have benefited greatly from the wolfs hunting senses, and warning defences.
As the process of taming wolves was repeated the humans would have started to unknowingly selectively breed. They would not keep the wolves which showed aggressiveness towards them, they would have kept and then breed from the wolves with the most loyal and useful traits. Different groups of humans would have needed different traits in their wolves for their specific needs; size, coat length, hunting and retrieving ability of different animals, and guarding ability would have been some traits involved with the selective breeding process.
As time passed and more civilisations developed, the trading of dogs began, at this point the origins of many more dog breeds began.
Today all recognized dog breeds are placed in one of seven dog breed groups:
Hounds - Breeds originally used for hunting either by scent or by sight. The scent hounds include the Beagle and Bloodhound and the sight hounds such breeds as the Whippet and Greyhound.
Working Dogs - Over the centuries these dogs were selectively bred to become guards and search and rescue dogs.
Terrier - Dogs originally bred and used for hunting vermin. 'Terrier' comes from the Latin word Terra, meaning earth. This hardy collection of dogs were selectively bred to be extremely brave and tough, and to pursue fox, badger, rat and many more, above and below ground.
Gundogs - Dogs that were originally trained to find live game and/or to retrieve game that had been shot and wounded. This group is divided into 4 categories - Retriever, Spaniels, Hunt/Point/Retrieve and Setters although many of the breeds are capable of doing the same work as the other sub-groups.
Pastoral - Herding dogs that are associated with working cattle, sheep, reindeer and other cloven footed animals. Usually this type of canine has a weatherproof double coat to protect it from the elements when working in severe conditions.
Utility - This group consists of miscellaneous breeds of dog mainly of a non-sporting origin. The name "Utility" basically means fitness for a purpose and this group consists of an extremely mixed and varied bunch, most breeds having been selectively bred to perform a specific function not included in the sporting and working categories.
Toy - Small companion or lap dogs. Many of the Toy breeds were bred for this capacity although some have been placed into this category due to their size.