Anxiety is a condition that is not restricted to humans. When pet owners abandon their adopted cat or dog or fail to provide them with a proper environment, the condition can arise in the animal too. How it was kept and treated before the adoption can also trigger pet anxiety. If you suspect pet anxiety in your pet, you can make a positive difference in its life by following this guide.
Let’s find out how to spot and ease pet anxiety.
5 Proven Ways To Handle Pet Anxiety
We’ll first discuss how to spot pet anxiety and then a few easy ways to help ease it so that your pet can feel a little more comfortable and a little less anxious in your home.
Spot Pet Anxiety
Pet anxiety manifests itself in various ways. The condition is typically evident and easy to spot.
For cats, the most common signs of anxiety include constant meowing, repeated scratching, aggressive attitude toward other humans or animals, sleeping more than usual, digestive problems, lack of appetite, hiding from family members, and not using the litter box when needed, such as by urinating on the floor.
For dogs, though, anxiety looks like incessant barking, pacing or refusing to lay down, trembling or shaking, panting without exercise, compulsive licking, hiding, or even refusing to leave your side and following you excessively around the house.
If not treated, your pet can become hostile and destructive, especially with strangers. They may even lose their appetite and become reserved over time. Hence, keep an eye out for these behaviors all the time, and then keep in mind some of our following tips to ease anxiety.
Revisit the Timings of Rewards
Most pets are quite attention-seeking, and their owners just can’t resist petting them or providing treats at unpleasant moments, such as when they’re leaving. Creating a drama out of a simple goodbye can prove to be stressful for the animal that has to spend time alone by themselves, so keep it light and upbeat.
To address pet anxiety, act as if separation is not a big deal. Just say goodbye and leave. Inform them that you’re going and let them know that you will back. The best time to reward your pet with cuddles and treats is when you return so that they see the reward comes from staying calm.
If you’re worried about separation anxiety, start small and only leave for a few minutes at a time, and then increase your errand time gradually. That way, they can learn that you will always come back, even when you’re gone for hours.
Utilize Pet-Friendly Scents
Animals naturally produce certain chemicals that function to calm them. Airborne substances known as pheromones mimic those chemicals and can prove curative for pets. They’re available in the form of plug-in diffusers, sprays, collars, and wipes. You won’t likely sense the smell, but it can give a lot of relief to your furry mate.
Engage Them in Physical Exercise
If your pet is experiencing anxiety, be it separation anxiety or other stress types, exercising should be an effective fix. This helps ease pet anxiety in several ways:
- Ensures bonding time with you
- Wears your pet out, so they sleep instead of pace around
- Gives them something to look forward to each day
However, this has to be a good session, such as a long walk or a play ball period. Try your best to make this quality time by talking to them and ensuring physical contact. Exerting your pet physically will tire them out and leave less energy to be anxious. Physical exercise produces beneficial endorphins, which, in turn, help release pet anxiety and stress.
Did you know that a massage can be just as relieving for pets as it is for humans? Giving your pet a massage helps ease the tense muscles, reduce depression, and the stress hormone.
When your pet seems especially on edge, your touch can calm them. Start soft in the shoulders and work your way down their back, using calm and controlled movements to help them feel at ease.
At Home Pet Services You Can Trust
If your pet gets specifically anxious when you leave the house or when they have to go to the vet, Pet Pro Services can help! We have doggie daycare services and home boarding options so that your pets don’t have to feel anxious and lonely throughout the day. Plus, we even have at-home pet health services where we offer a full spectrum of home care services ranging from nursing assistance by our Veterinary Technicians to high-tech procedures. Keeping your pets at home in a comfortable space that they feel safe in can significantly reduce their anxiety, especially when they are sick or you have to go out of town.
Hiring a professional service can help! If you are looking for the best pet services, contact Pet Pros International Services today.