Is Your Dog Stressed Out? [Video]

July 21st, 2017 by Daniel Mudrick

Dogs may seem happy-go-lucky most of the time, but they can get stressed and anxious just like their humans. Short-term stress serves an evolutionary purpose… but long-term stress isn’t good for anybody!

If your dog is often stressed out and overwhelmed, it can lead to health complications down the road. Not to mention, it’s an unpleasant experience for your pup the whole time they’re feeling that way. As pet parents, we want to do our best to reduce the stress our pets feel and make their lives as carefree and joyful as possible.

Signs Your Dog Is Stressed

The first step in helping your dog is knowing when they are stressed.

Here are some common stress indicators you can watch out for:

  • Shallow panting
  • Nose/lip licking
  • Sweaty paws
  • Excessive shedding
  • Raised heartrate
  • Excess drooling
  • Decreased appetite
  • Increased sleeping
  • May get hyperactive
  • May cower or hide behind you
  • May act out in an aggressive manner (barking, lunging)
  • Upset with noises – fireworks, thunder, etc.
  • Separation anxiety – upset when family leaves the house

This is an excellent video that talks about these signs and what you can do:

How Can I Help My Dog Be Less Stressed?

Chronic stress in dogs can stem from a variety of triggers, from changes in housing or routine to loud noises like fireworks. Often, you can’t simply take the dog out of the situation or make the circumstances go away.

If that’s the case, here are some tips for soothing your scared pup:

  • Give them something that smells like you
  • Hide treats around the house for them to discover throughout the day
  • Make sure your dog gets enough regular exercise and mental stimulation
  • Use a calming medication-free ThunderShirt
  • As the video mentions, try to create a positive association with the situation so they won’t be as stressed next time
  • Get pet behaviour counselling for personalized advice (Dr. Mudrick has a lot of success with families with stressed dogs)
  • Then talk to your vet about anti-anxiety treatments

Reducing or eliminating your dog’s stress is the best way forward for everyone involved. Your family will be happier and safer around a calm dog and your pup will live free of chronic anxiety!

Clarkson Village Animal Hospital is dedicated to using fear-free techniques to help pets feel relaxed. Book your appointment with us today!

Fighting like cats and dogs? Get our step-by-step guide: How to Introduce Cats and Dogs So They’ll Get Along!

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About Daniel Mudrick

I'm the owner and founder of Clarkson Village Animal Hospital, a state-of-the-art veterinary hospital that's open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Clarkson Village Animal Hospital has always been a dream of mine, and by caring for one patient at a time, the hospital has continued to grow. During those rare times when I'm not at the hospital, I'm at yoga, hiking, gardening, and spending time with my family. I also enjoy reading to stay current on the most recent advances in veterinary medicine.

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