How Do You Know Your Dog Is Stressed And What Can You Do About It?
Oh to live a dog’s life…no worries, no cares…
What might surprise you is that just like people, dogs can experience stress in their lives – the difference is you won’t ever hear them tell you they are stressed, but they can be stressed nevertheless. In fact, it’s more common than you may think.
Although Fido can’t verbally tell you of his stress, there are signs and indications that will give you a heads up that he is experiencing anxiety. Stress in dogs is more common than you may think, and some types of stress can actually affect their health if it’s not recognized and dealt with.
What are the signs your dog is feeling stressed?
- Loss of appetite – This is a sign that is very obvious and common. Because dogs typically love to eat, you will probably notice it right away. Obviously, skipping a meal here or there isn’t anything to worry about, but when when it becomes the norm rather than the exception, you know something serious is going on. If it goes on too long, not only will your dog lose weight, but it could mean that the stress is caused by a health issue, and you should have him examined by your vet.
- Increased shedding – Most dogs shed to a certain degree, but when they are feeling anxious, their shedding will increase.
- Excessive panting – If your dog is panting after he has been exercising, is hot, or excited, there is no cause for alarm. But if he is panting or taking shallow breaths, and none of the above mentioned situations have occured, he could be showing signs of stress.
- Body posture changes – Your dog has a “normal”, for him, way of carrying his body…but when he is feeling scared or stressed, his posture may change to cowering, tail tucked or putting more weight on his rear legs. But when this changed posture becomes constant, there could be more to it than meets the eye…something is bothering him.
- Being untypically destructive – This may be a sign that your pup is trying to alleviate his own stress.
- Clinging to you and continuously whining – The fact that your dog feels the need to be in constant contact with you or has become very whiny, when it appears nothing is wrong, indicates his need for reassurance due to something that is bothering him or he is fearful of.
- Potty accidents around the house – If your dog has been fully trained for a long time and and begins having consistent accidents, not only could it be an indicator of stress, but could also indicate a health issue (which is a type of stress), and your pup should be checked over by your vet.
- Sleeping more than usual – You basically know your dog’s sleeping patterns, so if they change and he is sleeping more and/or acting lethargic, you can be pretty sure that something is bothering him or making him feel anxious.
- Shaking or pacing – It’s fairly typical for small dog breeds to shake, but stress can cause all dogs to shake or pace nervously.
How can you help your best friend?
- Make sure your pooch is getting enough exercise – exercise is a great way to reduce stress in both humans and dogs. Be sure a lot of his exercise includes you…
- Whenever there are fireworks or a lot of commotion, provide your pup with a place he can go to feel safe, along with a favorite toy and a blanket he can cuddle up in.
- Watch for the things that trigger your dog’s anxiety so can eliminate or minimize them…a strange animal or human visitor, thunder storms, crowds of people, too much commotion and yelling.
If your dog’s anxiety continues after all your efforts to calm him, it’s a good time to make a visit to your vet to have him checked for any health issues.
At BowWow Fun Towne, we take your dog’s safety and health seriously, and have strict guidelines for our canine guests to have the proper vaccinations
Dogs are our business, and our friends, and we understand how important your dog is to you.
We are experts in dog day care – We are have a Puppy Preschool that would be great to enroll your pup in! Our facility features a full size swimming pool for fun and exercise.