What Is Your Dog Afraid Of?
And What Can You Do To Help?
Just like people, it’s not uncommon for dogs to have fears…things or situations they are afraid of. They could be scared of noises, places, people, or a variety of different things. In some instances, a little fear is an okay thing, it could protect Fido in case of danger. But fear can become unhealthy and lead to anxiety, which no one wants for their pup.
Your dog’s fear could manifest itself through:
- Cowering or Hiding
- Barking or Drooling
- Shaking or Trembling
- Aggressive or Destructive Behavior
- Whining or Squealing
No one, your dog included, wants to be, or enjoys being afraid. And we certainly don’t want our dog to be afraid either. So, once you have determined that Fido has fears, and what they are, there are things you can do to help…
How to help your dog deal with these common fears:
- Astraphobia, or fear of thunder – During a thunderstorm, your dog could have very mild to very extreme reactions. And though he may never totally get over it, there are some things you can do to help him deal with it better and prevent it from getting worse.
- If you have thunder anxiety, do your best to remain calm and pleasant around your dog.
- Never leave your dog outside during a thunderstorm.
- Provide a quiet comfortable place for Fido to wait out the storm. You may consider playing soft music for him.
- Get a “Thundershirt”…a type of wrap that helps provide comfort during stressful situations.
- Fear of car rides – This fear can occur if your dog wasn’t introduced to riding in the car at a young age.
- You can help him get over his fear by luring him into the car with his favorite treats and taking him to places that are fun, such as a dog park.
- Keep rides in the car short distances and frequent at first.
- Separation Anxiety or fear of being left alone – Dogs who have anxiety of being left alone or of being abandoned, can exhibit some very destructive behaviors as well as barking incessantly.
- It may be helpful to crate train your dog while you are away.
- If you are gone for long periods of time, enrolling him in a dog daycare, such as BowWow Fun Towne, is a great way to help him pass the time, meet new friends and have plenty of stress free playtime.
- Fear of strangers – Being afraid of people he doesn’t know, especially men, can be challenging to overcome. Often this can be traced back to not having early socialization when he was a puppy. Properly socializing your pup can make all the difference in the world in so many situations.
- Fear of fireworks – Similar to fear of thunder, the loud bang is very frightening to a lot of dogs. Similarly, provide your pooch with a quiet, comfortable place to “hang out” while the festivities are going on.
- Fear of the vet – Just like none of us look forward to going to the doctor, your pooch isn’t that fond of the vet. The smells, the strangers, being handled by strangers, along with other unpleasant memories can definitely cause some anxiety.
- Make unscheduled, quick social visits to the office, where exams and shots are not on the agenda. Make it happy and short, and be sure to include treats.
- Fear of stairs – Believe it or not, your dog could be afraid of the stairs, and will refuse to climb or go down them.
- Properly socializing your pup is a great way to avoid this fear.
- Make going up and down the stairs a game, using lots of treats and praise.
- Fear of children – You never know what you’re going to get from a child when you introduce them to your pup…they could be frightened, they could be gentle, they could be a little rough.
- Once again, proper socializing can help your pup get used to all kinds of people, big and small.
- This could be a serious problem, if your dog continues to be fearful of children, you should consider consulting a behaviorist or dog trainer.
- Before the child is allowed to “meet” your pup, explain to him/her how they should approach, greet and touch him.
We are experts in dog day care, we care about your dogs and take their health and well-being seriously. Our facility features a full size swimming pool for fun and exercise.