Let’s face it, few things in life are better than having a pet dog in the house. Lovable rogues and loyal companions, they’re funny, friendly, and forever entertaining.
Nevertheless, dog ownership definitely has its challenges too.
Whether they’re chewing through treasured possessions or leaving dirty paw marks on freshly cleaned floors, it isn’t always a walk in the park. However, these kinds of irksome issues are nothing compared to seeing signs of anxiety in dogs that you own and love.
Regardless of their particular symptoms, it’s both awful to see them suffering and hard to know what to do! Even worse, this condition’s more common than you’d think. As many as 72.5% of pooches display signs of it.
Are you worried that your dog might be anxious and want to learn how to help them? You’re in the right place! Keep reading to discover all about canine anxiety and how to treat it.
10 Signs of Anxiety in Dogs
Recognizing canine anxiety is the crucial first step to treating it! With that in mind, here are 10 common signs that your pet pooch might be struggling with this condition.
Pet pooches that start pacing around the house could be feeling unsettled and uncertain. Whether they’re going back and forth or round and round, they might be feeling anxious.
2. Shivering and Shaking
One of the surest signs of canine anxiety is when they start trembling or shaking. Coupled with a general demeanor of concern, all that shivering’s a clear indication that they’re unhappy and need help.
3. Destructive Behaviour
Some anxious dogs take out their nervous energy on your house, furniture, and prized possessions. They’ll chew, dig, and destroy anything they can get their paws on. Needless to say, it’s one sing of separation anxiety in dogs that you can’t afford to last!
4. Non-Existent Appetite
Happy and healthy dogs aren’t known for being abstemious! With a never-ending appetite, they’d eat their way through the entire pantry if you let them. Just like humans, though, some dogs will lose their appetite and stop eating when they’re anxious.
5. Peeing and Pooping Inside
Has your dog started weeing or pooping indoors? Don’t worry, they haven’t forgotten their house training all of sudden! It may, however, signal that they’re scared and need reassuring.
6. Unusual Aggression
Like bullies in the schoolyard, dogs that show aggression may be feeling insecure and anxious. However, whether they growl, bark, or attack other dogs or people, this is one symptom you want to get sorted out ASAP.
7. Restless Behaviour
Most people who’ve experienced anxiety can relate to the sensation of restlessness it creates. It’s hard to stay still or be silent; you become fidgety, jumpy, and on edge. The same is true for some dogs!
8. Incessant Barking
There’s nothing unusual about a dog barking. It’s just what they do! However, something could be amiss if they start barking, don’t stop, and can’t be calmed down.
9. Running Away
Some dogs run away when they see a squirrel in the distance. But others do it because they’re anxious! Either way, you’ll want to take preventative measures (such as installing baby gates) to stop your dog escaping from the home.
For one reason or another, a few anxious dogs even display self-harming behavior. For instance, they might chew their paws, their tail, or start licking themselves non-stop.
How to Treat Anxiety in Dogs
Now we know the various signs of dog anxiety to look out for, let’s turn to the treatment options that are known to make a difference. Thankfully, there’s no shortage of tips and tools that can help! Here’s a selection of the best:
Visit the Vet
A sensible starting point is always to make an appointment with your vet. They have all the skills, experience, and relationship with your pet pooch to recommend the best way forward.
Even better, they’ll be able to do a thorough examination to see if any physiological issue could explain your dog’s symptoms. With that ruled out, the vet would be able to prescribe medication (if required) alongside sensible behavioral and environmental strategies.
Understand the Stimuli
Another important step is to work out what triggers your dog’s anxiety. With that insight in mind, you can then take remedial action to avoid it/them!
For example, imagine that your dog gets anxious when they’re left alone in a quiet house. To reduce their distress, you could leave a radio turned on while you’re out and/or hire a dog walker to swing by each day. With a temporary solution in place, you can then search for more permanent solutions, such as behavioral treatment and CBD oil for dogs with separation anxiety.
Exercise has an uncanny ability to lift anybody’s spirits, right? You get the heart working, blood flowing, and endorphins pumping. It makes intuitive sense, then, that exercising your dog as much as possible will help their anxiety!
As much as anything else, taking them on lots of walks and playing games in the garden will tire them out! Any nervous energy in their bodies will dissipate in the process. Of course, it’s also a way to spend more time with them, which provides an invaluable sense of love and security.
All dogs need lots of love, attention, and cuddles. Yet anxious dogs need even more of them! Aside from building the bond between you, all that physical touch and affection can help to soothe, reassure, and pacify their anxiety.
The best part? You’ll love it too! After all, there’s nothing better than cuddles with your fur-baby.
Remember This Information About Canine Anxiety
Life is always better with a dog to keep you company. Cute, loyal, and loving, it doesn’t take long for these adorable additions to the household to become cherished members of the family.
Unfortunately, many of our beloved canine companions suffer from anxiety these days. Even worse, it’s hard to know how to ease their distress.
That’s why we put this post together! With any luck, the signs of anxiety in dogs that we’ve highlighted above will help you recognize the issue and seek appropriate support for your pet pooch.
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