How To Calm Dog Anxiety Naturally
Anxiety is a condition that presents itself on a long continuum, both in humans and our furry companions. It can rear its worrisome head in reaction to a specific event, like a thunderstorm, or it can be a more general condition, almost always lurking beneath the surface.
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Signs of dog anxiety can appear in a severe way with aggression, depression, and destructive behavior or it can present with sometimes misunderstood behaviors like accidents in the house, excessive barking, or drooling.
Whatever the cause and expression of your pup’s anxiety, finding relief is a sometimes tricky process of trial and error. If you wish to avoid pharmaceuticals, you will need to try a variety of therapies to find those that work for your dog’s specific anxieties. Consult with your veterinarian before you use any treatments on your pup – natural or otherwise.
Home Remedies For Dog Anxiety
One or a combination of several of these 11 natural remedies may help ease symptoms and get you both feeling more safe and secure.
#1 – Essential Oil Diffusers
Essential oil diffusers are a safer way to administer these potent plant extracts to your dog and reap the time honored benefits of their use. For anxiety, try diffusing lavender or frankincense. If you’ve got a mind to mix it up, try a peace promoting combination of orange, tangerine, ylang ylang, blue tansy, and patchouli.
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Please note that many essential oils are not safe for direct application to dogs, so consult a holistic veterinarian if you’d like to further explore essential oil therapies for your dog.
#2 – Thundershirt or Half Wrap
If your dog suffers from storm anxiety, it can be ruinous to the household’s sleep and dangerous for your panic-stricken dog. The Thundershirt wraps your dog in a firm hug, bringing a sense of calm to the parasympathetic nervous system. It has been successful in treating even very severe cases of weather-related anxiety.
If you’re more of a DIY’er, you can make your own version at home, called a Half Wrap, with an ace bandage or scarf. In either case, limit use of the wrap to high anxiety times. Using it too frequently can lessen efficacy.
#3 – Comfort Cuddler
Being close to your scent can help dogs who suffer from separation anxiety. The Comfort Cuddler is designed especially for that purpose. Simply stuff it with a used shirt, pillow case, or other soft item that has your scent and your dog can cuddle up to it when you are apart. The best part? We donate a toy to a shelter in need with every purchase of the Comfort Cuddler.
Comfort Cuddler – helps your pup feel close to you even when you are away
#4- Hemp Oil
Hemp oil has been used successfully in humans and dogs to ease the symptoms of anxiety. It’s important to choose a full-spectrum oil in order see benefits. Full spectrum oils contain ingredients from the seeds, stems, and leaves of the hemp plant. All three are necessary to see therapeutic benefits.
Discover what causes your pup to feel separation anxiety!
#5 – Chinese Medicine
Chinese medicine says that anxiety results as an imbalance between the kidneys, a water element, and the heart, a fire element. Specially selected combinations of herbs can work together to put these elements back in harmony and as a result, return peace and calm to your dog.
Although there are herbal tinctures commercially available that are safe to try, a consultation with a Certified Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine Practitioner is ideal. She can help you determine which combination of herbs will be best for your dog’s particular situation.
#6 – Calming Treats
There are tons of choices available when it comes to calming treats for your anxious companion. These treats contain ingredients that promote relaxation, such as melatonin and tryptophan. Best thing about these is that they are tasty and super easy to administer to your fur baby.
#7 – Essential Oil Collar
This solution is perfect for the pup that has situational anxiety. If car rides or visits to the park get your pup worked up, try hanging an essential oil diffusing locket from her collar. You can also rub the oils into the pads of your pup’s feet for absorption into the body. Make sure they are certified as safe for topical use in dogs.
#8 – Chamomile
The flowers of the chamomile plant calm the mind, body, and digestive system. You can safely give your pup chamomile tea right in his water dish.
#9 – Pheromone Spray
When a puppy nurses is is a naturally calming and satisfying experience because his mother emits pheromones. Thanks to science, these chemicals can be mimicked and be used to create an inviting environment for your agitated pup. Spray down the kennel, car, bed, collar or room ahead of time and let your dog enjoy the serenity.
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#10 – Pasque Flower
For a fast-acting solution to separation anxiety, add drops of pasque flower tincture to your dog’s daily water. It targets destructive behavior by calming the nervous system.
#11 – Kava Kava
Kava Kava is an herb traditionally used in Polynesian culture. It is safe for use in dogs to treat general anxiety but is especially effective for dogs that are restless. Add the tincture or powder form to food or water.
Frequently Asked Questions About Natural Remedies for Dog Anxiety
1. How Do I Teach My Dog To Be Alone?
Dogs, just like us, can experience feelings of anxiety and distress when separated from their loved ones. Teaching your dog to be comfortable while being alone is important to help reduce and prevent separation anxiety. Here are some dog anxiety remedies to help your dog feel more comfortable alone at home:
Create a space for your dog with familiar scents, their favorite toys, and a cozy spot to lie down.
When training your dog to be alone, it’s important to be patient and provide support every step of the way.
Celebrate every small step that leads toward independence by offering plenty of love, reassurance, and positive reinforcement.
Introduce your dog to the cues associated with your departure, such as picking up keys or putting on a coat, without actually leaving. This can help desensitize them to these triggers and reduce anxiety.
If you have a busy schedule, enrolling your dog in daycare or hiring a dog walker can provide them with social interaction and physical exercise, preventing them from feeling lonely or anxious.
If your pet is still struggling despite your best efforts, seeking professional recommendations is a great way to understand their unique needs and create a tailored plan to ease their distress.
2. What Scent Calms A Dog?
As dog lovers, we know that some scents can have a calming effect on our furry friends. These scents can create a peaceful atmosphere and put their hearts and minds at ease. If you’re interested in helping your dog relax, you’ll be happy to know that certain scents can do just that.
Lavender: The gentle, floral aroma of lavender is known for its calming effect on dogs, making it a perfect choice for creating a serene environment.
Chamomile: Just like it does for us, the calming properties of chamomile can work wonders for your canine companions, helping them relax and unwind.
Valerian: This natural root calms dogs during stressful events like thunderstorms or fireworks.
Peppermint: While typically known for its refreshing qualities, peppermint can also have a calming effect on some dogs, bringing a touch of tranquility to their surroundings.
Sweet Marjoram: With its sweet and gentle aroma, sweet marjoram can work its magic in helping your dogs relax when they’re feeling anxious or restless.
Rosemary: The woody and herbal scent of rosemary has a knack for soothing our canine friends, helping them find their calm and peaceful moments.
Remember, every dog has unique preferences, so pay attention to how your furry companion responds to different scents. Start with small amounts and monitor their reactions to ensure they feel comfortable.
3. Can I Give My Dog Melatonin For Anxiety?
Melatonin can be used to help dogs cope with anxiety, especially in situations like fireworks, thunderstorms, or separation anxiety. Consult your veterinarian before giving your dog any medication, including melatonin, as the dosage can vary based on your dog’s size, health, and specific needs.
The recommended melatonin dosage for dogs can vary, typically between 1.5 to 6 milligrams, depending on their size and health. However, every dog is unique, and your veterinarian will be able to provide the best advice tailored to your dog’s individual requirements.
It’s important to be aware that while melatonin is generally considered safe for dogs, some dogs may experience side effects such as drowsiness, changes in mood, or digestive issues. Keeping a close eye on your furry companion and monitoring their response is key when introducing any new medication or supplement.
4. Does Peanut Butter Calm Dogs Down?
Peanut butter is a well-known snack for dogs. It can provide distraction and concentration, especially when incorporated into interactive toys or during training sessions. However, there is no scientific evidence to support the notion that peanut butter has calming effects on dogs specifically.
Some dogs may find the act of licking peanut butter off a toy or a spoon to be enjoyable and soothing, which can help distract them from specific stressors or temporarily alleviate mild anxiety.
It’s important to remember that while peanut butter can be a tasty and enjoyable dog treat, it should be given in moderation due to its high fat content. Choose peanut butter without added sugars or xylitol, which is toxic to dogs. Always consult your veterinarian before introducing new treats or foods into your dog’s diet, especially if your dog has any specific dietary restrictions or health concerns.
5. What Homeopathic Remedies Are Best For Anxiety In Dogs?
When it comes to managing anxiety in pets, some pet owners consider using homeopathic remedies. Some of the commonly used homeopathic remedies for dog anxiety include:
Chamomile: This sweet herb is known for its calming effect and may help your dog relax and unwind.
Valerian: Known for its natural soothing properties, valerian root can be a great support in calming anxious dogs, especially during stressful times.
Passionflower: This lovely herb is believed to have calming effects and could be a gentle option to help reduce your dog’s anxiety under the guidance of a vet.
Aconitum: Sometimes called monkshood, aconitum is used in homeopathic remedies to help address acute anxiety and fear in dogs.
Lavender: Not only does it smell delightful, but lavender is thought to have calming properties, creating a more serene atmosphere for your anxious pup.
Always remember that each dog is unique, so the effectiveness of these remedies can vary. It’s crucial to have a chat with your vet before trying any new treatment. Your vet can provide personalized advice tailored to your dog’s needs.
6. What Are The Best Natural Anxiety Products For Dogs?
If you’re looking for ways to help your dogs cope with their anxiety issues, natural products can be highly effective. Fortunately, you’re not alone in considering these alternatives. Here are some of the best natural anxiety products for dogs that you may want to try:
CBD Oil: Cannabidiol (CBD) oil derived from hemp can have calming effects on dogs without the psychoactive effects of THC. It is known to help reduce anxiety and promote relaxation in some dogs. Do not use products containing THC for dogs, as it is unsafe.
L-Theanine: This amino acid is found in green tea and is known for its calming properties. L-Theanine supplements can help reduce stress and promote relaxation in dogs.
Calming Treats: There are various natural calming treats available that contain ingredients such as chamomile, valerian root, and other herbs that can help reduce anxiety and promote calmness in dogs.
Herbal Supplements: Certain herbal supplements, such as chamomile, valerian, and passionflower, can help reduce anxiety and promote relaxation in dogs when used under veterinary guidance.
Aromatherapy: Essential oils such as lavender, chamomile, and sweet marjoram, when used in a diffuser or applied topically in diluted form, can create a calming environment and help reduce anxiety in dogs.
When considering natural anxiety products for your dog, it’s crucial to consult a veterinarian to determine the best option for your pet’s specific needs. They can guide appropriate dosages, potential interactions with any current medications, and any potential side effects to watch out for.
Natural Solutions For Dog Anxiety Help Bring The Calm to Your Pup
When your dog is shaking, drooling, pacing, or in full panic mode it can lead to destruction, injury, and frustration. Anxiety is a common problem in dogs but with a concerted effort to find a solution that works for your dog’s particular situation and body, relief can be found naturally. As we mentioned, always talk with your veterinarian prior to any treatments for your pup – even when the remedies are all-natural.
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