At ZenCrate, we want to be a resource for owners of pets suffering from anxiety. As we all learn more about how and why anxiety effects pets, we can continue to create products and services to serve these pets, and the families that support them.
While some dogs simply suffer from anxiety for no reason at all, here are the most common causes for anxiety among dogs.
It’s not a myth that cats and dogs can feel a storm coming sooner than a human can. For these reasons, some scientists believe that certain dogs experience extreme anxiety at the onset of a storm. Whether it is the change in barometric pressure, or the loud noises accompanied by a thunderstorm, dogs that experience storm phobia may exhibit behaviors such as hiding under furniture, pacing, trying to escape, or shaking uncontrollably. In these instances, the primary concern is to keep your dog for harming itself, and trying to ensure they are as comfortable as possible until the storm passes.
Lack of Socialization
Socialization at a very young age is key in raising a puppy that isn’t afraid of everything and everyone he or she comes in contact with. Typically, we see anxiety later in life when puppies are taken away from their mothers before 8 weeks old. It’s important to keep this in mind especially when bringing home a new puppy; habits that they pick up early in life can stick with them for a long time to come.
Unfortunately, many shelter dogs have experienced past abuse or trauma, and again these experiences can stay with pets for their entire lives. Signs of past distress may include cowering, self-destructive behavior, or escapism. If you believe that your pet is suffering from anxiety for this reason, the best course of action is to consult your veterinarian to choose an appropriate treatment plan.
Separation anxiety is the most common cause of pet anxiety, and unfortunately one of the hardest to diagnose since it is difficult to tell the difference between a dog who just requires a little extra training, and a dog that is suffering from separation anxiety. Current symptoms of separation anxiety include incessant barking, urinating or defecating in the house, destructive habits like chewing or digging, escaping, or erratic behavior. First rule out that there are no medical issues with your pet by speaking with your veterinarian, and then check out a few tips on helping to reduce anxiety naturally.