How To Calm Dogs With Anxiety? Things You Should Know

Anxiety is a serious mental health concern, not just prevalent in humans but also in dogs. Were you aware that even your pet dogs can feel anxious and overwhelmed at times? Yes, you read that right – but they can’t tell you how they feel so you need to figure it out for them.

Dogs are sensitive animals and can, like us humans, feel a good range of emotions. Separation and abandonment can instantly trigger a dog‘s anxiety and, as a result, make him feel insecure.

So naturally, pet parents across America are always on the hunt to figure out how to calm dogs with anxiety. In this article, we break down things you should know to help your furry friend out and make him feel perfect again.

What Causes Anxiety in Dogs?

There are a number of things that can trigger your pet pup’s anxiety. But unfortunately, it becomes difficult to fathom the gravity of the situation since dogs cannot express their emotions and thoughts. Though most of them whine or bark due to communication, it is challenging to always get it right.

So the question arises: do they feel all of this without any reason whatsoever? Short answer – no. Anxiety in dogs is caused due to few crucial factors such as fear, old age, separation, change of ownership, abandonment, mistreatment, and a range of other situational elements.

If your canine is scared or dreads loud noises or tends to fear the sight of a particular person or even a vet’s office, it can instantly instill anxiety and fear in them. Though this may not aggravate them a lot, it can turn your pet into an anxious dog if it persists.

Separation anxiety, due to abandonment or separation from family members, causes a drastic change in your dog’s behavior ad overall mood. This change may lead to your pet, developing and showcasing unpleasant habits, such as excessive barking, urinating, spoiling the furniture, etc.

Few canines can even face fear and stress due to old age that causes confusion and blurs their headspace. This makes it extremely difficult for them to cope due to age-related diseases and deficiency.

Common Signs of Anxiety in Dogs

If you are a new pet owner, it is extremely vital to understand the main signs and symptoms of anxiety in your pet dog. Below are a few symptoms as well as body language you should look out for if your pet often suffers from fear and stress:

  •  Aggression
  •  Urinating or defecating in the house
  • Panting
  • Drooling
  •  Excessive barking
  • Destructive behavior
  • Restlessness
  •  Depression
  • Pacing
  • Whining
  •  Shaking or Trembling

Hence, ensure that you keep an eye on these signs and if make a note if they start to become a common occurrence. Canines are pretty expressive through their body language and can ask for your attention whenever they feel apprehensive.

So, it is important to educate yourself on tips and tricks that can make you learn how to ease your pet’s anxiety?

Read further to unveil more details on helping treat stress in your furry pet friend.

What Dog Breeds Are Prone to Anxiety?

Is your dog a Labrador or Cocker Spaniel? Or is it a Greyhound or Russell Terrier? If you answered yes to any of these, there are high chances that your dog is prone to general anxiety.

So, the question then arises: is general anxiety normal in dogs? To an extent, every canine may go through general stress, but the signs may go unnoticed as the symptoms are pretty normal. But, this isn’t the case with separation anxiety.

Breeds such as German Shepherd, Labrador Retriever, and Poodle are more likely to face separation anxiety. Also, if the stress persists, it may lead them to display destructive behaviors and mood swings.

Home Remedies for Canine Separation Anxiety

The majority of canines have a calm disposition, but separation from their owners for a long time can instill fear, stress, and destructive behavior. Apart from destroying stuff, they may start feeling worried even before you head out or not make any eye contact with you.

Dog separation anxiety is generally triggered in furry pets when separated from family members they are super attached to. Apart from destroying things inside the house, it may even lead to self-injury due to the canine’s barrage of emotions.

When treating your dog’s separation anxiety, your aim should be to resolve the reason behind their altered behavior.

So how can you nip the bud at home?

Be Calm: Always maintain your cool when you come home or leave for work. This tactic will get your furry friend used-to to your consistent and predictable schedule

• Include games: Try to include some fun games or physical training every now and keep them engaged when you plan to head out

Positive reinforcement: Treat your canine for every good behavior they demonstrate. This practice will train them to stay calm when they leave the house

• Worn Clothes: Leaving your furry pet with your worn clothes will give them a sense of security. The sense of familiar smell will make them feel that you are around

Why Are Dogs Scared of Loud Noises?

As a pet parent, you may find your canine getting startled by the sound of thunder or a firecracker. Fear of loud noises can be pretty stressful for them, leading to fear-related stress in them.

Dogs are sensitive to higher decibels of sounds, and hence it is vital to prepare your canine for unpleasant loud noise around them. So, how to calm your canine when they are having noise phobia?

As a dog owner, you should first make them feel safe and keep them at a distance from the place prone to loud noises like traffic. Distracting your dog will also work to shift their focus from the nuisance noise.

Well, if you have a puppy, you can always train them to be accustomed to loud noises. Make them feel that it is normal and create a haven for them.

Storm anxiety in dogs

Dogs that are anxious and fearful during a thunderstorm is called storm anxiety in dogs. Severe thunderstorms with loud noise cause this anxious behavior in the nervous dog. Canines with this noise phobia behavior account for 30% of all dogs.

What does your canine do during bad storms?

Suddenly, they are terrified, entrapped, scrawling on the wall, chewing on their clothes, and breathing heavily. Canines often express their fear by making different noises and barking continuously.

How to prevent storm anxiety

When bad weather approaches, make sure your pet is indoors. Consider pet wraps, such as thunder shirts.

How to help your canine calm down

Distract your dog from hearing the loud noise to calm him down. Use a brush to groom your dog and allow him to play with ball-like toys. Offer him dog treats. You can ask your veterinarian for help if your pet isn’t calm down.

How to Tackle Anxiety in Older Dog?

Your gleeful pooch may feel a change in their mood or behavior as they turn older. Even though your dogs may have been happy pups their entire life, they may develop anxious tendencies in their old age.

As they turn older, they may face diseases such as memory loss, weak bones, and learning disabilities, and so on. It can create confusion in their head, and they feel out of place. It can slowly even lead to depression and stress in them.

So as a pet owner, what can you do to ease their brain? Below are a few steps that you can follow:

Activities and Exercise

Just because they are older dogs does not mean that you should refrain from physical exercises. Keep them engaged with a few games that involve physical movements and helps them to exert their energy.

Even you can join them with a few puzzles and toys that will boost their mental stimulation. This step will help stimulate your older dog‘s brain cells and avoid the chances of anxiety in them.

Offering Companionship

Your presence around your canine friend will make a huge difference to their mood. It will keep your furry friend at ease and when they experience anxiety. You can give them few massages to relieve their anxiety and stressed-out nerves.

A little 15-20 minutes massage to their head, ears, or feet can alleviate stress. You could even consider sleeping with your pooch, and it can help with their midnight anxiety or restlessness.

Effective Ways to Calm Your Stressed pet friend

Dogs are the most pleasant animals, and they make the earth a better place to live. Don’t you agree with that? They uplift everyone’s mood and are always up to some mischief. But even these happy-go-lucky animals may feel low and anxious on certain days.

Below are a few tips to help your adorable pet to ease their stress and anxiety:

Physical Contact

If you feel your canine is facing anxiety and is not his normal self, try to establish physical touch with them. Whenever you have time, try to cuddle with them and on the couch and pet them as much as possible. This tactic will make them feel at ease and at peace in no time.

Physical Exercise and Games

As we already mentioned earlier, physical training is necessary for your canine to feel alive again. It will keep your canine engaged and divert the mind from stressful situations. Exercise, as with humans, can be a great way to reduce stress. Physical activities such as walking or playing with a Frisbee will help your doggy release any built-up energy.

Music Therapy

Music not only soothes our brains but also creates a calming effect in your dog’s brain. It can be calming and relaxing for your pet if they are facing separation or noise anxiety. Research has shown that many dogs prefer classical music.

Music therapy will allow your pet to be at ease and find comfort in peaceful music. It is an effective way to treat anxiety and fear among canines. So next time if your doggy is shaking with fear or is feeling blue, play some music, and you will witness the magic that happens.

Calming Coats

Calming coats and shirts like ThunderShirt can do wonders to ease your dog’s anxiety level. So how do these work? These anti-anxiety and stress relieving coast are specially designed for your pooch’s well-being.

These magical coats apply mild yet constant pressure to a dog’s torso, wrapping them up like a baby. They are warm and comfy coats and are recommended for dogs who experience noise or separation anxiety.


If aromatherapy works to give a sense of tranquility for you, then it will work on your canine as well. Dogs have a strong sense of smell, and aromatherapy is ideal for relieving their stress and anxiety. But do ensure that you dilute the essential oils to avoid any sort of irritation for your doggies.

You can always try some citric or lavender essential oils to soothe their stress, depression, fear, and agitation. Your canine friend will love this session and will be rejuvenated by the end of the therapy.

Does CBD Oil Help in Easing Dog’s Anxiety

CBD oil or hemp oils have gained popularity in easing down even dog’s anxiety. It creates a sense of relaxation in them and even reduces any pain they experience due to stress. CBD oils or edibles have proven to work on pets who face separation anxiety too.

However, it is recommended to get advice from your veteran expert before starting the dose for your canine.


Do anxiety wraps for dogs work?

Anxiety or comfort wraps do help dogs to an extent with their anxiety. It also depends on few brands to determine the efficacy of the wraps. You can always try and test the product on your pet for the best results.

How do you socialize your dog with anxiety?

Slow and steady is the only solution while you plan to socialize your anxious dog. Make your doggie meet one person at a time and never push them to play with strangers. Reward positive behaviors that will motivate your doggie to repeat the same behavior.

Do dogs with anxiety bite?

Yes, there are chances that your anxious canine may bite out of aggression or fear.

How to solve my 3-month-old puppy’s separation anxiety?

If your pup is whining or barking, then ensure that you calm them down for few seconds. Also, it is important to crate train them. Make them feel at home and safe, and never let them alone for a longer duration.

Final Thoughts

As a pet parent, you should never give up on your pet doggy, who is facing anxiety of any level. Be supportive and patient during this phase. It is best to also check with your vet before feeding them with any anti-anxiety medicines.

Heaps of affection and understanding are what your canine requires at any point in time. With thoughtful consideration and immense care, your doggy can surpass the anxiety phase without much trouble.