Being a dog owner is one of the most rewarding experiences a person can have, but it does not come without its share of hard-work. Dogs can be incredible friends, and they can be a continuous source of joy and love for us humans, but they can also feel stressed out and anxious as well. As dog owners, we must be sensitive to our canine companion’s stress levels. If your dog’s behavior is slightly-off, stress could be the reason. Dogs are highly sensitive animals and get stressed in foreign situations, or if they feel uncomfortable, or in pain. You may notice a decrease in appetite when stress is the issue, a more isolated personality, your dog might act a bit more lethargic – or in some cases, even more antsy if they feel stressed. Noted below are some of the best tips for lowering your dog’s stress level.
Being with your dog is one of the greatest ways you can help them find calm, and reduce their level of stress. An article by the BBC shows that a dog’s brain reacts intensely to their owner’s presence, so keep in mind when your dog looks stressed, your being with them can greatly ease whatever discord they might feel. Dogs are biologically pack animals, so being with familiar faces really helps them find a sense of calm and relaxation.
An anxious or stressed out dog might find comfort in a quick snack, or a bowl of good, natural food. There are many great dog-centric websites that list in-depth breakdowns of health concerns and personality traits of various breeds, even for the more obscure breeds. For example, check out this in-depth analysis of the Norwich Terrier, found by just searching the web. It is not the world’s most popular dog breed, but as this example shows, there is an exhaustive amount of information available on this breed, and we can access it faster and more efficiently than at any time in the past. The analysis linked covers everything from the basic physiology of the breed, to grooming tips, and even links exhaustively detailed descriptions of diseases that may harm the breed. The amount of information on this one lesser-known dog breed alone shows how incredibly useful the internet can be when we use it to understand our pet’s dietary/physical needs.
This goes back to the first point of the article. Your presence alone helps your dog. The BBC article went on to state that symbols of affection or approval (i.e. petting, speaking in a loving way) stimulates a dog’s brain in immense ways. So there really is a very positive neurological response from dogs when they are being shown love by their owners. And this is the key to calming an antsy dog down. Interaction. Dogs are social animals, they like to interact with life. Humans are the same. We feel bad when we have nobody to talk to, we crave affection just like our canine counterparts.
It is important to understand these above concepts if your dog seems to get stressed out a lot. Consult with your veterinarian about possible anti-anxiety medication for your dog if it becomes true issue for them. But on bigger note, be supportive of your dog, be mindful of their struggles. Their moods are largely built on your mood towards them. A little patience can go a long way!
- Travel junkie, Amber Kingsley, is a freelance writer living in Santa Monica, CA. Her art history background helps her hone in on topics that are of interest to readers. She is a dog enthusiast and loves spending time with her pomeranian, Agatha.