Your dog is a highly-sensitive, emotional creature with lots of feelings! Unfortunately, this includes difficult feelings like anxiety. When your fur baby is feeling nervous, there are various ways you can help soothe her nervous system and bring her back to a calm and happy state. At Anasazi Animal Clinic in Gilbert, we want to assist you in giving your furry friend her best life—physically and emotionally! Read on to learn about five tips for calming anxiety in dogs.
1. Keep It Moving
In the same way a daily run or walk can help a human keep anxiety at bay, regular exercise also helps regulate your dog’s nervous system. While dogs need daily exercise for their optimal physical health, they also need it for their mental health! Regular exercise—outdoor and indoor—can do wonders for even the most anxious of dogs. Make sure to keep your furry friend moving!
2. Create a Safe Den
Humans often need to retreat to a safe space when anxiety levels run high, and your dog is no different. If you have the space, create a small area in your home away from any hustle and bustle. Stock this area with your dog’s bed or favorite blanket, her toys and any other of her favorite comforting items. This cozy sanctuary can give your anxious fur baby the feeling of retreating to a safe den where she can calm down and relax.
3. Stay Calm
When your dog is anxious, it’s perfectly normal to feel concern for her. Dogs are very sensitive creatures who easily pick up on the energy around them. Staying calm can help your dog return to a calm state.
4. Silence is Golden
Many dogs have anxiety that is triggered by sounds. If your dog is sensitive to loud or sporadic noises, doing what you can to create a quiet environment for her can make a world of difference. Make her safe den in an interior part of your living space, away from the noises of the outside world. Sometimes, calming sounds can drown out anxiety-inducing sporadic noises. You can leave music or the TV on when you leave your dog at home, so that there is steady, predictable noise to soothe her.
5. Work With A Trainer
Many trainers specialize in working with anxious dogs. Trainers can apply various techniques to desensitize dogs to anxiety-inducing triggers (like loud noises), while offering positive reinforcement (like praise and treats). Working with a trainer can help you gain some tips and tricks for soothing your fur baby when she’s feeling nervous. You can also begin working with a trainer to manage anxiety early—when your dog is a tiny puppy. This may curb the onset of anxious behaviors when she is older.
Questions or concerns about your dog’s anxiety?
Contact Anasazi Animal Clinic in Gilbert today to discuss more tips, tricks, and solutions to calming anxiety in dogs—so you and your fur baby can live your best lives together!