Dogs can be a lot like humans. They can get anxious in high-stress situations, and it can be hard for them to feel calm and relaxed without some support. If you have a dog that tends to get anxious, there are some steps that you can take to alleviate that anxiety. Here are some of the best ways to calm your dog so you can ensure that he stays happy and thriving.
A Thunder Shirt is a product that was developed to help ease anxiety in dogs. Dogs wear Thunder Shirts tight and snug around their body, which helps them feel like they are being swaddled, and in turn, gives them a sense of ease. Try putting a Thunder Shirt on your dog in a particularly stressful situation that often causes anxiety, like during fireworks, a thunderstorm, or when visitors are at your house. You may just find that it quickly makes your dog feel and act much calmer.
Dogs like to have small nooks and crannies that they can curl up in and hideaway. When a dog gets stressed or anxious, he may feel like naturally removing himself from whatever situation is causing him to be uncomfortable. Create a space that's only your dogs, that's out of the way of foot traffic or where people spend time. For example, a small out of the room utility room or laundry room might be a good space for your dog. Fill the room with objects that bring your dog comfort, like a bed, pillow, blankets, toys, and more. You can also try giving your dog a crate to go into. Crates mimic small caves or dens where dogs would sleep in the wild, and they're not constricting for your dog - they're actually very comforting. If you set up a specific space for your pet, you may find that he goes there automatically when he feels anxious and is able to soothe his own nerves.
Physical proximity to humans has been shown to calm a dog's anxiety. When your pet is feeling particularly anxious, hold him on your lap or close to your body. Or, try petting him. The touch from you may calm him down and you'll find that his symptoms of anxiety will ease up.
Vets are experts on dog health and behavior. Consult your vet about what you can do about your dog's anxiety, and he may have many helpful tips for handling it, including supplements your dog can take or preventative measures that you can take to limit the cause of the anxiousness in the first place. Vets may also be able to give your dog medications or treatments that will alleviate the discomfort of health conditions that make them feel worked up or anxious, like Apoquel, a dog medication that helps to reduce skin itching and other allergies that can get him worked up.
If your dog tends to get anxious, you're in luck. There are some easy steps you can take to soothe his nerves and ensure that he does not feel too distressed or uncomfortable. By taking measures to ensure that your dog feels calm and comfortable, you can increase his quality of life, and improve the quality of the time that you get to spend with him.
Lannie, writer for Allivet. Allivet provides affordable pet supplies and pet medications, all of which can be purchased online.