Recognizing signs of dog anxiety

Dog anxiety manifests in different ways in different breeds of dogs and the malady may worsen over time if not properly treated. If your dog is showing signs of anxiety, find out the exact cause and implement a behavior modification process to eradicate the symptoms.

Dog anxiety symptoms are difficult to clearly define as many of them are rather subtle. The most evident symptom is excessive and unusual barking. If your dog keeps persistently barking for no reason and has difficulty calming despite your best efforts, it is definitely anxious.

Dogs attempting to hide or seeking loneliness are also symptoms of anxiety. A dog is anxious when it tries to hide behind the owner or nestling too close to its master or otherwise seeking too much comfort from the owner. Other more indistinct symptoms of dog anxiety are frequent stretching, whining, panting, shaking, yawning, trembling and licking, urinating or defecating inside the house. These behaviors are quite normal but when displayed far too frequently, it can indicate nervousness and anxiety.

As a rule, dogs are active and restless and jump or run through the house craving for attention.  If you just got home after long hours of work, this attention-seeking behavior is only to be expected.  However, if your dog is overactive and appears impatient without a valid reason, then it is positively suffering from anxiety.
To accurately diagnose dog anxiety, it is essential to know your dog's normal behavior when it is calm. For instance, if you're relaxing in the bedroom with your dog lying beside you, closely observe how it is behaving. Compare that to the times when it is agitated and behaves differently. If you notice a perceptible behavioral change, then you can know it is anxious.

If you feel your dog has suddenly developed a sense of anxiety, consult a veterinarian to rule out health complications or medical causes before commencing a behavioral modification program. If the anxiety is not sudden, then you can safely infer it is a behavioral problem. Once you have patiently observed your dog's anxiety signals, check how long it takes for your dog to return to normal behavior after an exciting incident. For example, some dogs pant heavily when it is terrified – so observe how long it takes for his breathing to return to normal.

To reduce your dog's anxiety, identify a place where it is most calm and comfortable – may be a less noisy area in the back of your house. Create a safe room for your dog to relax in peace undisturbed by outside influences. When you realize it is anxious, escort it to that room and let it stay there until it becomes calm and normal again. Please understand that this seclusion is not a punishment but a cure therapy.

Recognizing anxiety symptom in dog and treating it promptly is very important as anxiety symptoms can interfere with a dog’s emotional health and over time affect their physical health. Living an anxious life is as stressful for a dog as for a man. But you can easily reduce the anxiety psychosis by recognizing the symptoms and taking measures to reduce the anxiety – may be in consultation with a qualified veterinarian. Anxiety drugs are usually prescribed to provide fast improvement in abnormal dog behavior.
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