experience with prozac and trazodone

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experience with prozac and trazodone

This is a discussion on experience with prozac and trazodone within the Dog Training and Behavior forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Dogs category; Our female Wheaten, Zoey, just turned one and we have noticed a gradual increase in her anxiety levels. She has more triggers and her threshold ...

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Old 02-18-2019, 02:46 PM
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experience with prozac and trazodone

Our female Wheaten, Zoey, just turned one and we have noticed a gradual increase in her anxiety levels. She has more triggers and her threshold has become shorter. For example:
-she used to bark at school busses, then she began lunging back toward the house, pulling her leash frantically, when she heard a bus, then hiding in her crate when I went to get her leash during the middle of the day (still OK at night).
-She didn't like to be brushed (even though we paired this with a high value treat), so she would wiggle and fuss, then she'd run away or nip at our hands (never a true bite), then she would hide in the crate when she saw the brush and comb, now she hides when she sees me walk toward the laundry room and turn at the spot where we keep the brush and comb!
-She has always struggled at the (very patient!) groomer and last time she had to stop half way because Zoey was so anxious. Only got her legs done, so she looks like she has a giant head!! Groomer commented that she sees these behaviors mostly in rescue dogs, not in dogs like Zoey, who we've had since she was 10 weeks old.

Last week she started cowering and crying for no apparent reason, just out of the blue. Wouldn't let us approach or touch her, would not take a treat; she paced frantically then just stood and looked down for a few minutes. Took her to the vet who found nothing unusual in the exam (except that Zoey whined and cried the entire time) and blood work was perfect. Vet gave us Trazadone to try for the weekend. After 2 doses we saw great improvement...no more sudden crying, sleeping all night, playing fetch, offering behaviors for treats, even let me brush her for 10 minutes while she licked peanut butter from a plate. Vet wants to start 10 mg prozac, and keep Trazadone 50mg 2xs daily for about 3 more weeks. Then stop the trazadone and see how she responds to the prozac.

I am looking for others who had had experience with these drugs. My goal is to switch her to prozac for maintenance and keep the Trazadone around for more stress-inducing situations, like going to the groomer. If this medication can help her focus and put her in a better position to learn, maybe we can someday take a walk and NOT SEE our house, or hold it together when a school bus passes us.
Thanks!!
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Old 02-18-2019, 03:07 PM
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10 mg might be a bit low of a dose for a Wheaten. It's a good starting point to taper on, but you'll probably have to increase to at least 20 mg later on.

My boy was previously on both Prozac (fluoxetine) and trazodone. They were helpful! But the trazodone made him too sleepy so we went off that, and then his vet behaviorist switched him to Paxil (paroxetine) instead of the Prozac. Now he takes 20 mg paroxetine (he's a 28 lb Cocker mix) and Clonidine as needed. I've also started adding probiotics to his food that are supposed to help.

I've seen pretty good results. I'm hoping to get him back into training this spring to work on his reactivity but I think we'll make good progress now that his meds seem to be where they need to be.

As a tip, go for the generic if you can (so fluoxetine instead of Prozac) and see if you can get the pills filled at a pharmacy. I get Chisum's paroxetine filled at Hy-Vee for about $3.50/month.
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Old 02-18-2019, 06:57 PM
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My dog has been on sertraline (generic of Zoloft) for almost three years now for severe separation anxiety. I'm his third home. His first and longest home gave him to a friend at age thirteen months when they were moving. Second home gave him to a shelter after two months. He wound up in two shelters due to space and sat for a month. So anxious they had to keep him on a whole different floor. Couldn't get through twenty minutes of obedience class before they had to leave.

Three months after I got him, I moved apartments. As soon as he saw the packing and moving boxes he went crazy. Followed me so close I literally was tripping over him. I couldn't go to work he almost jumped through the third floor window. Took out two window acs and broke the screens. Had to leave him in my car with the AC on all day until I could get him into doggy daycare. He destroyed my last apartment.

Trazodone is a sleep medication so it sedates them. My friend's dog has severe anxiety and is scared of noises, he is up all night afraid of the sound of her refrigerator. Now that they have a newborn it's worse. Medications are helping him, I think it's Prozac.

Another dog at the park goes crazy with fear at the sound of the trains, which go by a lot, he starts howling and running and they have to leave. He started medication recently which I think is helpful.

Since my dog can now be home alone nine or ten hours a day with no problems and is overweight I'm very slowly starting to reduce the sertraline. He's still very clingy so I'm going slow. He follows me around and has to "guard" me whenever I take a shower. I tried leaving the door to the bathroom open and telling him to stay, while lying down in the hall right outside, but once I was actually in the shower, he snuck back to his spot right outside the tub. When I initially told him to go, he tried to get in the shower while it was on, and he hates baths and water.
So maybe I'll keep him at the current dose after all.
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Old 02-18-2019, 08:25 PM
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My dog developed EPI at 2 YO and started being very reactive with other dogs. She also developed anxiety at which time she would shake, hide behind furniture, pace at night - but it is not dementia. We really have no answer for her anxiety. It was very sad.

We tried many things: a trainer, extra training, Thundershirt, Rescue Remedy. Nothing worked very well. So we tried Prozac. She was a zombie within a few days, so I quickly stopped it. I had read about trazadone working for some dogs, so my vet agreed to try. It worked beautifully. She takes 1/2 of a 50 mg. pill every evening. She weighs 32 lbs. I see no negative side effects and she is monitored for liver and kidney function, which has been fine. It was a good move for her. She's been taking it for about 4 years now - she is 13.5, slowing down with arthritis a lot, but still enjoying walks and short bursts of playtime.

Hope you find the right meds.
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