When you leave your pet alone or a thunderstorm hits, you may notice your dog becoming nervous or agitated. This is not a healthy state of mind for your pet, so it is essential to calm him as much as possible. Continue reading to learn a few tips to help calm your nervous dog.
Tip #1: Provide Physical Contact Opportunities
If your dog is whining, pacing, shaking, or exhibiting other nervous symptoms, then give him an opportunity to get close to you. Most dogs are social creatures who love and need physical contact with their owners; however, some dogs may lash out or become aggressive when they are nervous or overwhelmed. Do not grab or pet your dog forcefully. Let him come to you by sitting near him in a favorite spot of the house or offering your hand to sniff.
Tip #2: Take Energizing Walks and Playtime
Exercise is necessary to keep stress levels down in humans and animals. If your dog experiences separation anxiety or seems nervous often, then make walks and playtime a priority. Dogs should be walked on a daily basis to relieve stress and maintain a healthy weight. In addition to daily walks, be sure to play with your dog regularly.
Tip #3: Examine Your Surroundings
If your dog seems unusually nervous, then examine yourself and your surroundings. Dogs will respond to human emotions, so your high stress levels may be affecting your dog’s nerves. Your dog could also be responding to a stranger, noises, other animals, or scents in the immediate area.
Tip #4: Play Mood-Specific Music
Animals respond to music the same way that humans do. It can calm them, make them agitated, and cause other reactions. If your dog is nervous when you leave or during thunderstorms, then play dog-friendly music to calm him.
At Horizon Animal Hospital, we can diagnose your dog’s nervous symptoms and help you keep him calm during times of stress. Please call us at (480) 800-4559 to schedule a visit for your dog’s behavioral health.