How to Calm an Anxious Dog

You dog can be anxious or frightened for many reasons and the first step you need to take is to check with the vet to rule out any physical ailments such as an infection, severe pain, accidental poisoning by some toxic substance or the age factor. Once you have eliminated these possibilities, you can take steps to calm your dog depending on the reasons for its anxiety.

Separation Anxiety

In the wild, dogs are never separated from their pack members and being left alone without the proper training can make your dog very nervous. Work with your trainer and understand tips such as:

  • Leave your dog alone for short periods before extending them for longer ones.
  • Make sure you exercise it before leaving so it has expended all that excess energy and will rest quietly.
  • Do not make eye contact or talk to or touch your dog before you leave. Saying good-bye makes the dog anxious because it senses your worry.
  • Be calm and confident and project those feelings to your dog.
  • Make sure your dog is supplied with food, water and toys.

Other Reasons

  • Diet – Check with your vet and change your dog’s diet to a high protein, low or no carbohydrate diet. Ask for any medication including mild sedatives that can calm your dog.
  • Thundershirt – This is a jacket that wraps around your dog snugly giving it the feeling of being hugged, thus, calmly it. But check with your vet before using it since it may not work on all dogs.
  • Training – Understand how to calm your dog by consulting with a behaviorist.
  • Music – Classical, and low, soothing music genres can calm your dog.
  • Scents – Certain odors including dog appeasing pheromones, lavender and particular herbs have been known to work very well.
  • Try conditioning your dog by exposing it to the scary situation is smaller degrees so that it gets used to it and is not anxious any more.