How We Got Our Kooky Dog to Calm Down
This post was created in sponsorship with Pet Naturals. All opinions expressed here are my own.
Maxi turned 6 this year, and despite everyone we know saying oh don't worry. She'll calm down when she's older, I have decided to stop holding my breath. Maxi is a spirited little doggo. We know that she's part Rat Terrier, and I'm convinced that the other half is like... Sonic the Hedgehog. When Maxi sees an open field or yard she runs in circles until she slows down to a walk and then sleeps for a day and a half. She is an all or nothing kinda gal, much like her mama, and does not half-ass anything. If she's going to chase a squirrel, for instance, Maxi will chase that squirrel with such intention that she runs into something. She's weird and full of life and I just love her SO MUCH.
Maxi is also a rescue (if you're near Washington State, I can't recommend Emerald City Pet Rescue enough!), so sometimes that energy manifests as really nervous energy. We aren't sure what Maxi's life was like before she moved into the palace that she now rules with an iron first (read: our house), but ever since I brought her home she's been a bit skittish. She spooks easily and doesn't take particularly kindly to strangers. Can you blame her? While in theory these traits wouldn't be terrible, sometimes Maxi gets herself so worked up that she can't stop shaking. Something will set her off, like a weird sound outside or a large fly, and Maxi will shake and cry and burrow herself into something soft. It's quirky, yeah, but it's also heartbreaking to see her get so upset and not be able to calm herself down. We've tried everything. My brother even suggested that we leave Christmas music on for her. He claims that she likes it, but I'm convinced it only works because he has it turned up so loudly that she can't hear anything else. Not even her arch nemesis - the kids that go to the high school across the street from our house.
I was honestly stoked (perhaps the opposite of calm?) when Pet Naturals invited Maxi to try some of their Calming chews. I like to joke that she has such a big personality packed into such a tiny package that she can't help but be a little crazy sometimes. What is she supposed to do with ALL OF THIS PERSONALITY, you guys?! The chews are small enough for her tiny mouth which, when you have a dog that weighs less than a large burrito, is something important to consider. The first time we gave them to Maxi she gave it a sniff, looked at me, and inhaled it. We went to see my in-laws after (something that always gets Maxi riled up because she LOVES going to their house) and my MIL kept asking is she OK? She seems so calm! She's never like this when she comes over! Score.
We don't give Maxi Calming everyday, only when she really seems to be needing them. She tends to get really scared when anybody comes to our door, so we gave her a chew recently before friends came over for dinner. Maxi happily greeted them and then got on with her life - just the way a dog should be. No more incessant shaking, crying, or hiding. It was honestly a dream come true.
People often ask me if I'll continue using the products I've posted about once. YES. Absolutely. It's my intention to only work with brands that I really believe in. I'm thrilled that we found something that works for Maxi. It's a relief to see her act like... herself! You can find Pet Naturals Calming at your local Walmart or online at bit.ly/WalmartCalmingJar.