Is This Pug Crazy?


Q: My wife and I have an adopted 6 or 7-year old female Pug.  Looking for a suggestion of a product like a calming collar or CBD oil or anything you think really might work. Daphne will not calm down and stop barking in the morning even after eating. She’s been waking us at 3 a.m. We try to wait until 6 a.m. to feed her.  Maybe even a shock collar is suggested if you suggest but I’d prefer not to resort to that.  Just bought a sentry brand calming collar but haven’t tried it yet.  Any suggestions would be really appreciated.

M.A., Cyberspace


A: No shock collars, please. Congratulations on the adoption, that’s great. Not sure how long you’ve had the Daphne but here’s the truth. I’ll offer some general advice, and you’ll say in a month how smart I am.

Sure, my advice may help. But what matters most is simply giving your new pal and opportunity to adjust.

Let me directly answer your product questions. CBD (cannabidiol, is a non-psychoactive chemical compound from the Cannabid sativa plant). There is indeed anecdotal evidence that CBD can work to diminish anxiety in dogs, but no published science – at least not yet – on that specific use for dogs. Also, individual products vary – so it’s a good idea to ask your veterinarian about a suggested product. Unfortunately, in some states veterinary professionals aren’t supposed to talk about CBD.

As for a calming collar, you are referring to a collar which emits a naturally occurring pheromone, and does indeed help dogs to feel more comfortable in their environments. CEVA Animal Health manufacturers both the Adaptil plug in diffuser and collar, and has science to back their products (so that is my personal preference regarding pheromone product to purchase).

Absolutely, Adaptil can really help dogs to transition into a new home.

But what’s really going on here? And that’s hard for me to say with the information offered. Is this an especially energetic and a bit up tight Pug? Maybe?

What happens at 3 a.m.? Does she go to the bathroom, and just bark for attention? It seems as though you’re waiting her out for a more reasonable hour which is a good idea. And indeed, unless she truly needs to go out, ignoring her is the way to go.

As for those zoomies and that barking, the behavior seems to happen after eating. It appears as if only wants to play. So, take a squeaky toy and toss it, repeatedly. Also, preemptively stuff treats (like low fat) peanut butter into a toy, such as a Kong toy. If she is busy trying to get to the delicious treat (and for Pugs, they have a long list of delicious treats) out of the toy – then she’s not wreaking havoc.

Now, if you suggest – and you know your dog best – that she’s anxious, and what’s going on is likely anxiety based, then get some hands-on help with a certified dog behavior consultant (

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Steve Dale is a certified animal behavior specialist who has been a trusted voice in the world of pet health for over 20 years. You have likely heard him on the radio, read him in print and online, and seen him speaking at events all over the world. His contributions to advancing pet wellness have earned him many an award and recognition around the globe.

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