Monday, March 29, 2010

Anxiety From Thunderstorms, Hard to Console

A new study from Penn State University claims that you can not console your dog during a stressful event like a lightening storm for instance. According to the study, even if you hold your dog and try to console him, his body will still produce hormones to respond to the perceived danger. The "flight or fight"  response is a stress response caused by the release of adrenaline and cortisol. This speeds up their breathing rates, the heart rate and the blood pressure and metabolism. Normal, but it can be detrimental if it is something that goes on for a long time.

The study showed that it did not matter if the owner was holding their dog, at the time of stress, or not consoling him at all. The level of cortisol released was the same at a 207% increase from the norm.

Besides medication, for stress, scientist think that having more than one dog helps. Apparently, if you have several dogs, their cortisol levels are already at a higher level. And when there is a stressful situation, the dogs calm down quicker and get back to normal faster than if they are in a single dog household.

Source  : Science Daily

1 comment:

  1. When I think about the thunder and dog response, I recall that our dog and past dogs were all very afraid and try to hide in a dark corner somewhere to get away from it. And they are right, you can't do much to calm them down.