Shasta Cove Dogs
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Thunderstorms!

We have had weeks of thunderstorms, with more to come. It has been a lively time on the Cove for our pups, one of fear and trembling, vigilance, and relief......and in Abbey's case: hard work!

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(Henry, Hank, Todd, and Emma find their place, as the thunder begins.)

Hank has never tolerated loud noises well and thunder is the worst for him. Though he has gotten a bit better over the years, he is an anxious and frightened thunderstormer. Through a long process we have learned he is best on medication, combined with gentle holding and loud cello music. And if we are able to anticipate the storm by an hour or two, that is better still. Emma has developed a fear of loud noises - every year she brings us a new facet to her personality - her 4th year it was fear of thunder, gunfire, etc. Her trembling lessens a bit if we sit with her and hold her tightly or let her nest into a pillow or blanket right next to, or often on top of, us.  Both Cody and Henry become very excited with each clap of thunder - they are not really frightened, tho very hyper and vigilant: noses to the air, eyes bright, waiting for the next one. As long as some part of us is touching some part of each of them, they are fine. After a 1/2 hour or so of vigilance they wear themselves out and fall asleep. If we loose our physical contact with either one of them, he awakens immediately and, again, becomes quite excited. Tuxedo does not like thunder at all and at the first sign, retreats quickly downstairs to bury himself in the puffy quilts of the guest room bed. When we go to check on him we can barely see him he has nested in so completely. As the storm progresses he will come upstairs and curl up next to us on our bed, trembling all the while. At the first hint of thunder, Jasper, literally flies (do his feet even touch the ground?) through the dog door and runs straight for the safety of his crate, where he stays, rather calmly, throughout. Sally becomes a bit anxious but as long as one of us is in her sights she will settle down, napping with one eye open in case we move. Abbey has a completely different response to thunder and lightning, or any kind of loud noise: she hurries out on the deck, nose to the air, ears back, tail tightly curled, and marches up and down, barking loudly until the noise subsides and her home is safe. We always thank her for keeping the thundergods at bay. Even in her illness and frailty she persists and succeeds in this wonderful endeavor. Protecting us all. Loudly.

One of the (MANY) things I love about dogs is that when the storm has passed and the thunder is gone, the residual effect is: 
tired dogs sleeping soundly. 
When they awake, all fear and trembling, hyper-vigilance and anxiety, is gone.
That was then, this is now.



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There are love dogs no one knows the name of.  Give your life to be one of them. - Rumi