Can Pig Perfume Calm Down Hyperactive Dogs?

Dog research suggests that pig perfume can calm down hyperactive dogs.

Texas Tech scientist  John McGlone formulated “Boar Mate” and “Stop That”, which are pig perfumes that may just help hyperactive dogs calm down. According to the research, using the perfume on dogs may just help stop them from doing unwanted behaviors such as excessive barking, frantic jumping and more.

McGlone, who works in Texas Tech’s Animal and Food Sciences department of the College of Agriculture and Natural Sciences, came up with the formula after he decided to find ways to stop his Cairn Terrier Toto from barking too much.  He was amazed by the results after just one spritz of the pig perfume.

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“One of the most difficult problems is that dogs bark a lot, and it’s one of the top reasons they are given back to shelters or pounds,” he wrote in a press release.

 

Pheromone from Pigs Help Calm Down Dogs

The key ingredient that makes the pig perfume effective in calming dog is called androstenone, which is a steroid and pheromone produced by male pigs. Thisis released in the male pig’s saliva and fat. It is what female pigs in heat find attractive. So that means a dog sprayed with the Pig Perfume should keep away from female pigs that are in heat. McGlone said androstenone smells pungent, but it can have an effect on mammal behavior.

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Read: Bulldog Behavior and Temperament: How to Keep Your Canine Companion in Check

Testing Pig Pheromone on Dogs

Together with his colleagues, McGlone tested the product on four different groups of dogs, who bark incessantly, in separate kennels.The group wanted to know not only if the pheromone affects the dogs, but if the spritzing startles the dogs as well.

  • The first group of dogs only had a person with another dog stand in front of their kennel to make them bark. No spray or perfume was used. Only 3 out of 12 dogs (25%) stopped barking.
  • The second group of barking dogs was then sprayed with a placebo that only made a startling spritz noise. In this group, only 4 out of 9 dogs (44%) stopped barking.
  • The third group of barking dogs was sprayed using a noisy spritz that contained a lower concentration of androstenone in isopropyl alcohol. In the group, 7 out of 9 dogs (78%) stopped barking.
  • The last group of barking dogs was sprayed with a higher concentration of androstenone in isopropyl alcohol using a noisy spritzer. A total of 6 out of 6 dogs or 100% of the dogs stopped barking.

“We sprayed it in their nose or toward their head while they were barking…barking and jumping, running back and forth,” McGlone said. “This whole behavior stopped. You could almost see them thinking, ‘What was that?’”

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The product also had no effects on the heart rate of the dogs. With the findings, the researchers were led to believe that androstenoneis an intermone, which is a “pheromone in one species and has a behavioral effect in another species, but we do not know if it is a pheromone (naturally produced) in the other species.”

Aside from its effects on dog and pigs, the pheromone seems to have an effect on cats too.

“It’s best used as a training tool rather than a circus act to stop animals from doing what they’re doing,”McGlone said.

 

Source: Discovery News

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