Your pet is not just a dog. They’re your best friends who share in your joy and comfort you when you’re feeling down. So, when they’re feeling less than their usual cheerful selves, you need to do everything you can to help them bounce back.
Anxiety in dogs has become increasingly common, and if this is a condition your pet suffers from, you’re not alone. Fortunately, there are numerous ways you can alleviate the symptoms, and we’ve outlined some here!
Get Them Exercising
One of the best ways to help curb anxiety – for humans and pets – is by exercising. One of the reasons why pet’s manifest anxiety is that they are often left alone. While we’d all love to be around our pets 24/7, this isn’t always feasible.
To make sure that your pets don’t feel separation anxiety, create a daily exercise routine. This gives them something to look forward to and releases feel-good endorphins at the same time. If walking them yourselves isn’t an option, book them into a doggy daycare. They can spend the day playing with other dogs and getting plenty of exercise at the same time.
A tired, well-socialized dog will be far less prone to anxiety than one who has pent up energy and nowhere to release it.
Massage releases tension in muscles, which is a by-product of anxiety. The anxiety response is, in essence, a ‘fight-or-flight’ instinct. This means that when animals are faced with danger – in the case of a dog – all the systems in their body prepare to fight the threat or flee from it. However, the trigger doesn’t have to be a physical incident; dogs who suffer from separation anxiety can be just as tense.
To combat any feelings of tension, take your pet for a regular massage, or give them one yourself. TTouch therapy has proven to have amazing results and can help your dog relax.
According to the Whole Pet Vet, music positively impacts humans’ memory, emotional state, and even recovery time for physical injuries. Specific types of music, such as reggae, rock, and classical, can reduce anxiety in animals too.
So, if you see signs of anxiety in your pet, put some music on, and you’re sure to see a difference.
Time Out To Relax
Another great idea for boosting your pet’s mood is to treat them to a vacation. And by ‘vacation,’ we don’t mean sending them off to the Bahamas for a week!
Why not book them into a pet hotel where staff members will treat them like royalty, and they can spend some time away from a potentially stressful situation. Even better, choose an establishment with a pool so that they can take a dip and play with their friends in the sun.
Calming coats distribute equal pressure on a dog’s back and sides. This releases endorphins, which give them a sense of well-being. Stroking your dog’s back has the same effect.
These coats are great for winter as they will keep your furry friend nice and warm; however, in summer, look for an alternative remedy as a coat could make your dog quite uncomfortable.
If there’s one thing that makes anyone feel like a million dollars, it’s having their nails or hair done. This is as true for humans as it is for pets. So, if your dog is feeling a bit blue, why not book them into the groomers to have their coat cut or their nails clipped?
A well-known technique used to help animals out of an anxiety cycle is to make them concentrate on something other than the stimulus causing them stress.
Often, new environments or changes in a current situation triggers anxiety. If you’ve recently moved house or there’s been a change in the family dynamics, your dog may be feeling the effects. To counteract this, you can focus on providing mental stimulation to offer a distraction.
Whether it’s teaching them new tricks or playing with puzzle toys, breaking the cycle will give your furry friend time to adjust.
Essential oils have numerous healing properties, with many of them helping to calm you down. Pets can greatly benefit from essential oils. But be warned that some can be poisonous if they are ingested.
When you visit your vet, ask them what essential oils could be used to boost your pet’s mood. Or, if you prefer, take them to a doggie spa where qualified therapists will be able to apply the oils to your pet in the way that is best for them, and they will get a massage thrown in!
Natural Calming Remedies
If you’d like to calm your dog down naturally but need a little help, there are numerous over the counter remedies that are pet friendly. A wide variety of CBD oil products are available as well as other homeopathic tinctures that have a calming effect
Because they are natural, these remedies are much better for your pet’s system than clinical medications. They have a less harsh impact on the kidneys, and their side effects are limited.
Pheromones are the hormones that a mother secretes when she’s nursing her pups. When a puppy goes to its mother, they are the reason why it’s instantly calmed down. Pheromone scented collars and wipes have been developed to mimic this effect. They can be successfully used to treat anxiety in dogs, and sometimes all that’s needed is for your pet to have a quick sniff to feel less stressed.
For dogs of all sizes, anxiety can be a debilitating condition. However, as you can see, treating it doesn’t have to be traumatic or even require veterinary drugs. If your pet is experiencing any forms of anxiety, we encourage you to give some of these ideas a try!