Perhaps it shouldn’t surprise me but the more I research pet care and looking after our cats and dogs the more I am surprised at how much there is in common with looking after ourselves and our human loved ones. Of course there are the more obvious similarities such as good diet exercise grooming and so on. What about the psychological areas of inner well being, anxiety, stress, and even depression? Is there a common approach to providing pet anxiety relief and relieving stress in our dogs?
There are a number of human stress factors that may not have a direct impact on our dogs such as financial worries, unhappy relationships, losing our jobs and so on. However, if you have a strong bond with your pet and if you are stressed out or suffering from anxiety for any length of time, it is more than likely that your pet will be stressed out too.
Although some breeds of pets are naturally highly strung, anxiety in pets is a very common problem and causes of anxiety can vary tremendously. Not unlike us humans these root causes may often be attributed to an unexpected change to their normal environment or routine. Examples of such causes could be:
- Being left alone for long periods of time such as being separated from their owner.
- Changing owners.
- A change to the family set up such as a new baby or even another pet.
- Moving to a new environment such as a new home or being put in kennels.
- Any event which causes your pet to suffer a trauma such as an accident.
- Sudden loud noises such as a car backfiring or fireworks.
- The appearance of young and exuberant children.
- Poor diet and lack of proper nutrition.
- And let’s not forget breeding.
When you see dogs in stress (or you may not have realized that anxiety and stress in dogs was a troublesome issue) you may well have witnessed one or more of the following symptoms:
- Pacing up and down (now you know why animals in zoos and circuses behave in this way).
- Aggressive behavior.
- Not eating.
- Whining and moaning.
- Barking for prolonged periods.
- Soiling the home.
- Excessive panting.
- Tearing up items in the home.
- Being hyperactive.
As pet lovers and dog owners we know the responsibility that comes with having pets so what can we do to ensure we either eliminate the causes of stress and anxiety or at the very least provide pet anxiety relief and pet stress control should any of the above causes occur?
Although there are various medications and drugs available to help you and your pet cope with the symptoms relating to stress and anxiety I personally would think long and hard before giving them to my pets. Again, as with treating anxiety disorders in humans, certain drugs and medications are deliberately made to dull the senses so only have a short term beneficial effect (if you can call it that) and many have unpleasant side effects.
Regarding pets and stress relief, this could mean that your dog for example is made compliant and immobile. Side effects can include low blood pressure, vomiting, loose bowel movement, and diarrhea. Would you really want to see your dog or any pet suffer like that as a result of giving your pet these pet stress reducers?
I wouldn’t and I know you wouldn’t either. We do not need to rely on drugs and unsafe medications to cope with canine stress or stressed cats. We have far healthier alternatives in providing stress relief for dogs and cats just as we do for looking after humans.
By using the same mindset that you would use in looking after your self, your loved ones, and your family, take a more holistic approach in providing pet anxiety relief. Your responsibility starts with making sure your pet feels totally safe, secure, and a welcome member of your family.
Anxiety relief for dogs and pets continues with ensuring they have a healthy and nutritious diet, regular exercise, plenty of water, and of course lots of love. Take a holistic approach to caring which enables you to contribute to the physical and the emotional health and well being of your pet.
There may still be occasions when, unfortunately, unforeseen circumstances or events cause your pet undue stress and anxiety. In these situations, instead of turning to drugs and medications, there are natural remedies that are totally safe to use with no risk of harmful side effects. Homeopathic remedies and herbs are far gentler on us as well as our pets. Before using them, however, it makes sense to consult your vet or someone trained in homeopathy and find the safest pet anxiety relief available.