Dog Anxiety

three unhappy dogs in the rain animated

We all know how serious of an issue anxiety is for many individuals in the world today. The truth is, while our own anxious thoughts can preoccupy us, we aren’t the only ones experiencing the burden of anxiety. Our dogs are suffering from this problem too. In fact, anxiety can lead to serious behavioral problems in nearly every breed of dog if it’s not dealt with properly. In this post, we’ll examine dog anxiety in more depth and offer some recommendations for relief and prevention of anxiety in dogs.

The Causes of Dog Anxiety

Dog anxiety has multiple causes. Some of the most common causes of dog anxiety are separation, fear and aging.

Separation Anxiety

Separation anxiety is estimated to affect at least 14% of dogs. Some of the signs of separation anxiety in dogs are:

  • Urinating and defecating
  • Barking
  • Chewing and destroying
  • Escaping
  • Pacing

While those are just a few signs of separation anxiety, we also need to understand why these behaviors might occur in the first place.

  • Change of guardian or family
  • Change of schedule
  • Change of residence
  • Aging in dog

Fear

Fear-related anxieties can be triggered by loud noises, strangers and new or strange environments. Sirens from home alarm systems can be very loud and can cause dogs to panic and/or seizure.

Some of the sure signs that your dog is afraid are:

  • Trembling
  • Tucking tail
  • Withdrawal/hiding
  • Escape behaviors
  • Excessive licking

Aging

As dogs get older, they become susceptible to both physical and psychological issues that can provoke anxiety. One of them is called Cognitive Dysfunction Syndrome, or CDS. CDS affects sleep patterns, appetite and bladder control among many other things. These changes can be very disorienting for dogs, leading to anxiety.

How to Calm A Dog with Separation Anxiety or Other Anxieties

Training and Counterconditioning

The goal of counterconditioning is to change your dog’s response to a particular stimulus that causes anxiety by replacing anxious behavior with more desirable behavior like sitting or focusing on the owner.

Another technique is called desensitization. In this technique, an owner gradually exposes the dog to the source of anxiety. Over time, the dog becomes less and less reactive to the anxiety trigger.

Medications for Dogs

Believe it or not, some cases of anxiety become so severe that veterinarians recommend certain medications, including fluoxetine and clomipramine. For other anxiety-inducing events like thunderstorms, your vet may prescribe medications like benzodiazepines and antidepressants.

For senior dogs with CDS, specific drugs like Selegiline may help reduce the effects.

How to Help a Dog with Separation Anxiety or Other Anxiety Issues

While medications and training can help curb dog anxiety, it’s best to try to prevent anxiety in the first place. Here are some practices that may help prevent dog anxiety.

Obedience

Obedience training is an important tool for helping your dog manage anxiety. Obedience training establishes trust and lays the foundation for healthy relationships. Training classes are great places for dogs to interact in controlled environments.

Exercise and Nutrition

Regular exercise is an important part of a dog’s physical and mental development. Dogs that get a sufficient amount of exercise are less likely to become anxious. A proper diet will keep dogs functioning at their best, making them less susceptible to anxiety.

Socialization

Socialization is a critical tool to prevent the development of anxiety in dogs. Introducing your dog to new people, dogs and environments will help reduce their reactiveness in the future.

Situational Avoidance

If you know that your dog has anxious tendencies, you can choose to avoid certain situations that might potentially become triggers. Avoidance may only be a short-term solution, but it could help prevent some unwanted situations while long-term solutions are being worked on.

Body Language

A great thing you can equip yourself with to help prevent dog anxiety is being able to read dog body language. Knowing when your dog is indicating fear or anxiety through body language will help you relate to them in a healthier way. You will also be able to sense when they are potentially becoming triggered, so you can react accordingly.

How Much CBD for Dog with Anxiety

If you are wondering how much CBD Oil should I give to my dog, you are in the right place. The proper CBD dose for dogs is 2mg per 10lbs. This equates to 5 drops of our 250mg Pet CBD Oil. For large dogs our 1000mg Pet CBD Oil is the best option. A 100lb dog will need 12 drops per dose. If you are lost, here is our CBD Dosing Chart for Dogs to do the math for you.

What Can I Give My Dog for Anxiety?

Just like with humans, your dog will benefit the most from taking CBD routinely on a daily basis. You can offer your dog CBD Dog Treats or CBD Oil for Pets to help relieve their anxiety.

Now learn about how to give a dog CBD Oil.

What Can I Give My Dog for Anxiety During Storms

CBD Dog Treats are a great way to provide some relief for your dog during a storm. These tasty peanut butter-flavored chews are loved by dogs. If you can offer CBD to your dog before the storm, this is best as it will take some time for the CBD to kick in. Read more about when to give my dog CBD Treats.

How To Know if Your Dog Has Separation Anxiety

Dogs with separation anxiety may start to act out or get hyper when you are preparing to leave your home. Some dogs are less obvious and may hide or sulk, while other dogs stop eating and act depressed or lethargic as soon as their owners begin packing for a trip. Dogs with separation anxiety can be destructive when you leave them. They may urinate and/or defecate in your home. They may chew up furniture, shoes, clothing, their bed, etc. Dogs with separation anxiety often pace and try to escape. You may notice nail scratches or bite marks on door frames. Dogs with anxiety that are left outside often climb over or under or even chew through a fence.

How to Calm Dog Anxiety Naturally

Calm your dog naturally by offering him or her CBD Oil for Pets. CBD for Pets can provide the same sense of balance and calm for our pets that it does for us. But it is important to integrate Pet CBD with other techniques to help calm your dog.

CBD Oil for Dog Anxiety

There’s reason to believe CBD oil helps reduce anxiety, largely due to something called the Endocannabinoid System.

What is the Endocannabinoid System?

The Endocannabinoid System is a body system that all mammals, including dogs, have. The ECS helps to regulate internal functions of the body like the immune system and central nervous system. In some ways, the ECS is your body’s controller. That is, its role is to steer your body back to health when it gets off course. Because of its widespread influence in your body, the Endocannabinoid System is associated with a variety of effects, including anti-anxiety, anti-inflammation and overall condition.

pet endocannabinoid system

How Does the Endocannabinoid System Work in Dogs?

While most of the animal studies featuring the Endocannabinoid System have been performed on mice, it is believed that dogs respond to the CBD the same way humans do.

The Endocannabinoid System runs via a network of receptors called CB1 and CB2. CB1 is more commonly found in the brain and spinal cord. CBD1 receptors are concentrated in brain centers responsible for appetite regulation, memory and emotional processing.

CB2 receptors are found in the peripheral nervous system and especially in immune cells. CB2 receptors are heavily involved in the inflammatory response.

When CBD enters the ECS, it interacts with these CB1 and CB2 receptors and with the endocannabinoid anandamide.

It’s the interaction between CBD, a cannabinoid, and CB1 and CB2 that help regulate anxiety. As we said, these cannabinoid receptors are located in regions responsible for emotional behavior, state of mind, stress and fear. The brain areas associated with these responses are the prefrontal cortex, amygdala and hippocampus.

Now you may be wondering how to choose the best CBD Oil for my dog. That is easy! The best place to find CBD products for your dog is Hemp Bombs, your trusted CBD retailer! Our pet CBD products are sourced from American-grown, sustainable Industrial hemp and formulated for pets in delectable flavors like chicken and beef CBD Oils and peanut butter-flavored CBD chews.

We hope you learned how to help your best friend with their dog anxiety today. There are many ways to help a pet with anxiety and it usually takes some trial and error and a few different techniques to get there, but don’t get discouraged! You and your dog will get there before you know it!

 

You May Also Like: