Migraine Alert Dogs: How they Can Help Migraine Sufferers

Migraine alert dogs alert patients if they are initially having the onset of a migraine. Those who suffer from migraines know how difficult these headaches are and how important it is to get quick relief. While a lot of people can easily spot the early signs of a headache, a migraine may not always have obvious signs. This results in the patient having a serious migraine with poor response to medications. This is where a service dog for migraines can be quite helpful. The dog picks up on the occurrence of a migraine during the early stages to help get the patient treated before the condition gets out of control.

What to Expect Before a Migraine

A lot of people who suffer from migraines go through the prodrome phase that can take place 48 hours before the pain symptoms start. During this stage, a sufferer experiences symptoms related to the changes in the nervous system such as digestive upsets such as constipation and diarrhea, hyperactivity or fatigue, mood swings, and difficulty focusing. A migraine alert dog is trained to support subtle changes in a person’s behaviour that might not be obvios to the person.

How the Dog Alerts Help

Dogs are known for their sensitive perception, from knowing when their owners are about to arrive home to when they are sad. The perception of the dog and their natural bond with owners allow them to swing into action if they sense something is not right with their owner. The sense of smell of a dog helps them notice changes in a person’s changes that may not be noticeable to the latter. Dogs trained for migraine therapy will know what to do to get a patient’s attention. They will stare at the patient or stick very closely, circle around the patient, give the patient a nudge or lick them, or bark to get their attention.

Although the majority of pets are perceptive about changes with their owners, regular dogs may not be able to alert their owners in the way a migraine therapy dog does. Also, it is important to consider the temperament of a dog when determining their ability to be used for this kind of therapy. But, a lot of dogs pick up on their owner’s migraines naturally.

As with other dogs, migraine alert dogs require some responsibility. Those who tend to have strange food cravings, frequently go to the bathroom the day or before your migraine attack, or get sleepy right before a migraine might benefit from having a migraine alert dog.