According to the ASPCA, estimates of dogs in shelters averages about 3.3 million canines on any given day in the United States. One of the reasons dogs do not get selected for adoption is behaviors associated with fear and noise anxiety. Since we are passionate about helping solve noise anxiety in canines, we were thrilled to find a Sacramento shelter looking to address this situation so that more dogs get adopted. Shelter dogs benefit from a noise dampening approach in this California animal shelter!
What Dogs Experience In Standard Shelters
First, it’s important to know that all shelters do good work. They are struggling with so many things that are working against them – dwindling budgets coupled with an increase of animals that need them to care for them. Dogs come to shelters for a number of reasons, none of them good. Shelters are unfortunately, a volume-based business. Because of this most shelters are loud, busy, and to dogs, they are foreign places where they have lost any sense of freedom of choice. Dogs tend to be frightened in a shelter. Frightened from the noises, smells, dogs, and people.
Noises Can Be The Worse
Because dogs have a high hearing sensitivity (source) they can hear everything in a shelter. From the strangers that come and go to the shelter to the dogs barking and whining – these types of noises fill a dog with fear. And also as we know, dogs like humans respond differently to fear. Some can be aggressive and others can shut down. Either response will be problematic for a dog in need of a forever home.
Shelter Dogs Benefit From A Noise Dampening Approach
At Front Street Animal Shelter, they’ve studied the impact that noise has on shelter dogs. In one of the shelter’s buildings they added 64 sound-dampening panels to decrease the stress levels in their dogs. These panels have provided a 20 percent decrease in sound intensity – and for the dogs, this has made a world of difference. Front Street also advocates adding other strategies to mitigate noise-related stress, such as training the dogs to be quiet, taking them for walks and feeding them treats during visits.
Our Commitment To Shelter Dogs
CrittEar is committed to helping all dogs with noise anxiety, which can result in noise aggression. We have been approached by a number of shelters and will be analyzing them for a partnership. We believe our dog earplugs can best help shelter dogs when there is a well-funded and managed animal behavior program. This is because dogs will need training both pre- and post adoption from the shelter.
Tips To Care For Your Shelter Dog
If you have a new shelter dog in your family, first we say: congratulations! Second we want to give you tips that can help you with their noise anxiety.
- Know The Signs: Noise anxiety in dogs can show up in a variety of ways. Pacing, barking, panting, pawing, and hiding are some of the most common signs of noise anxiety.
- Manage Sounds: Try to keep loud and surprising noises to an absolute minimum. Shelter dogs do well with very soothing, spa-like music playing softly in the background.
- Introduce Sounds Slowly: It’s best to buffer noises around your dog, and we feel that the best way to do this is with our earplugs.
- Treats and Behavior Training: When working with your dog to learn to trust their new environment, and thus noises, use treats and always be positive.