Updated: May 12
Many “pandemic puppy” owners recently have described their dogs as having “anxiety” - even puppies that are just a few months old! While dogs can experience anxiety similarly to people, it's critical to determine if your pup’s behaviors are the result of anxiety - or boredom, lack of exercise, and lack of training.
For rescue pups, there can be a variety of triggers based on past experiences and those can cause feelings of stress, and nervousness which can manifest itself in a variety of ways. From chewing through carpets, shaking, aggression, and pulling apart beds, couches, or pillows, there are many signs of dog anxiety that all dog-parents should be aware of.
The most common type of anxiety in dogs, especially adopted or rescued pups, is separation anxiety, often stemming from past trauma, abuse, and neglect. Additionally, some dogs can experience various levels of situational anxiety which is either mild or extreme.
If you visit a conventional vet, they might recommend giving medication to your puppy. Oftentimes this medication is the same medicine used for people, like Xanax or Prozak. Unfortunately, most conventional medication comes with a long list of adverse side effects, and while people can tell their doctors how these medicines make them feel - obviously the same can’t be said for your dog. While medicines can work, often they fail to address the underlying issues. Thankfully, there are plenty of natural remedies to explore that may help to ease stress and anxiety. (The FDA has not confirmed through its own studies that these products reduce anxiety). While May 2 - May 8 was Dog Anxiety Awareness Week 2021, its always good to explore tips for helping your pup be the best it can be.