Frequent Asked Questions - We are happy to answer them!
American Foxhound Mix
Male - Neutered
5 Years old
Sweet temperament, good with all other animals and people, athletic and alert.
How will Brewster get safely from Florida to the West?
In order to make this transition easier on Brewster, we will personally transport him wherever he needs to go.
I know lots of dogs who are afraid of thunder. What makes Brewster so special?
We've had many dogs over the years. And when it comes to thunder, we've had dogs who trembled, hid under the bed, in closets, or in the bathtub. We've had dogs who didn't care at all. We've also known dogs that have been helped with training and/or medication. We've tried just about every method you can name working with Brewster the last four years. We started with holistic and gentle methods, including essential oils, supplements, herbs, Rescue Remedy and the Thundershirt as well positive reinforcement. Then we started working with a Veterinary Behaviorist and moved through various prescription drugs. Nothing has worked well enough to give him a good quality of life during the rainy season. Dogs are excellent at linking events and it's come to the point that Brewster gets depressed on cloudy days. Rain gets him trembling as he anxiously waits for the thunder. When this weather pattern persists day after day, he becomes a shadow of the dog we have come to know during the winter. If it rains one day during the winter and the next day is sunny, he bounces right back.
Have you gotten more than one doctor's opinion?
We've worked with our local vet first, who've we've trusted with the care of our dogs for 18 years. Before moving onto Rx medication, we started working with a Board Certified Veterinary Behaviorist There are only 64 of these knowledgeable and specialized doctors in the United States. After working various protocols with her for 2+ years, she's told us that Brewster's phobia to rain and thunder is one of the most severe cases she's encountered. She has agreed that finding him a new home is a humane act on our part.
What type of home would he be happy in?
Our experience has taught us that a happy home can take many forms and that dogs adapt fairly well. That being said, these are some things that we believe would make Brewster happy and bring out the best in him and his new family.
- Lots of exercise! He will run with you, bike with you or play with other athletic dogs in a big, fenced in yard. He needs exercise to feel his best.
- Interaction with other dogs.
- Access to the outdoors most of the day. He loves the doggie door.
- A place to lie in the sun.
- People to interact with, but he's not clingy or needy.
- Riding in the car.
- Lots of love from a caring family.
Does Brewster have any other behaviors that we should be aware of?
In order to find Brewster the best home possible, we will be totally transparent with you and share everything we know. As with most phobic dogs, he also doesn't like being confined to small spaces. He will sleep in a crate but closing the door causes him to panic. He's fine being left in the house. If you need to board him while you are out of town, we'd suggest a dog sitter with a cage free environment.
It rains occasionally in our area, what would we need to do for Brewster?
That's the same situation we have here in South Florida during the winter. If the forecast is for all day rain, Brewster has a medication that mellows him out. He's apt to spend most of the day in his crate (he loves relaxing music). If it's a short spurt of heavy rain, he will get excited for a bit. Either way, if it's only an hour or a day of rain, once it's over he bounces back very quickly to his happy self. We've had daily rain with thunderstorms for almost 3 weeks straight, which is a whole other ballgame.
How can you bear to part with Brewster?
This is one of the most difficult decisions we've ever had to make. When we talked about it last summer, I couldn't even discuss it without crying. We agreed we'd give it three years and see how things progressed. Brewster had a wonderful winter this year, but when the rains started in May he immediately went back to his fearful behavior. We realized that we had to put his quality of life first. By finding him a happy home with much less rain and thunder, we will be doing just that. He's still a younger dog and we want to give him the best chance at a long, joyful life while mitigating his anxiety as much as possible. We love him and we've brought him a long way on his journey. It's clear that it's time to find him a new family that he can happily live with for the rest of his life.