Stress is a part of modern life but our pets are no different. Dogs suffer from stress just as humans do but that doesn’t mean it can’t be prevented. The key to resolving your pet’s issues is in recognizing and treating the symptoms.
Dogs can become stressed from any number of issues. Loud noises like thunder or fireworks, moving or changing homes, long-term confinement, and separation anxiety are very common stressors for many dogs. Excessive heat can also cause your pet stress.
If your dog is becoming anxious they will begin to exhibit certain behaviors. They will likely cower or hide, which is often accompanied by whining or barking. Panting, which is commonly associated with heat relief, is also a sign of stress. Your dog may also tuck its ears. They may even seek comfort by coming to you for protection.
If you witness these signs, first calm your pet to the best of your ability. Gentle petting and holding should help your dog relax. Like children, dogs need routines so adjustments can cause stress. Even if your household is going through changes, try to maintain certain routines like feeding schedules and walks. In high heat, walks should be kept to shady areas during the coolest points in the day, being dusk and dawn. Quite and serene areas, similar to our country like dog kennel, are ideal for walks. If undesirable noises are the cause, take gradual steps to accustom your dog to the stressor. Play a recording of the sound at low volume and distract them with toys or play. As they react positively, reward their behavior then gradually increase the sound. Remember to stay positive since scolding will only increase their stress.
Some stress may be unavoidable but it’s important to do your part to reduce stress as much as possible. Our dogs look to us for comfort so remember to remain calm and your pet will mimic your behavior. Small steps can make a big difference to reduce your pet’s stress.