Back to Work Blues for Jessie
Jessie is a senior Jack Russell Terrier who was developing 'night terrors' and heightened anxiety. It is very common for older pets to develop anxiety related conditions as their senses begin to fade, amongst other things (more info on this here.)
However Jessie's anxiety was a little more specific. See, Jessie's human mum had recently had time off work and was recovering from an injury; when it was time to start going back to the work routine Jessie was not coping with the changes. After having a thorough physical examination and blood work, it was found that Jessie was also experiencing some arthritic pain. X-rays confirmed osteoarthritis was the cause, so then Jessie received some orthopaedic manipulations ('Doggy chiro') from Dr Colin to get her body ship-shape.
When she was still displaying signs of anxiety despite being physically well, it was time to delve into a behaviour consult. Jessie’s mum provided us with a completed behaviour questionnaire and after a 45-minute consultation, we were able to establish a time-line of events. It was ascertained that Jessie was not only uncomfortable with mum no longer being around the house all-day every day, but that the particularly bad thunderstorm and firework season of the last few months was giving her an association of night time with loud noises (you can read more about this here.)
Through behavioural modification therapy, some routine adjustments and the assistance of anxiety relieving medications, Jessie no longer shivers and trembles when it begins to get dark. She can now sleep in her own bed again most nights and even braved the Australia Day fireworks without much fuss! How lovely for Jessie that she no longer has to suffer her night terrors and generalised anxiety.