How to Help Your Dog With Anxiety

 During the pandemic, 14-20% of dogs experience anxiety. If you ignore the stress, it will lead to a messy apartment. Don’t get us started about ripped carpets and chewed-up doors.

Whether your companion hates thunderstorms or fireworks, there are things you can do for a dog with anxiety. With some patience and love, you can help your furry friend feel more at ease, so keep reading to learn more.

Conditioning and Deconditioning

The goal of counterconditioning is to change your tail-wagging friend’s reaction to stressful stimuli. Use this method by substituting desirable behaviors with anxious or aggressive ones.

Desensitization is where the owner gradually exposes the dog to the anxiety-inducing stimulus. Repetition of exposure and the reinforcement of good behavior can reduce anxiety.


Ask your veterinarian about SSRIs and antidepressants for anxious pets. If your dog has to sit through fireworks, your vet can prescribe benzodiazepines. The medicine Selegiline works well with anxious seniors.

CBD for Dogs

CBD is a chemical compound present in cannabis and hemp. It acts on the endocannabinoid system in the brain to reduce anxiety. For CBD treats and oil, make sure it contains third-party testing. You can learn more by asking your vet and checking if it interacts with any of your dog’s medications.


Since stress generates excess energy, taking your dog for a long walk might be beneficial. Providing enough physical activity will release endorphins to relax them. Plus, they will be too tired to destroy your apartment. 

Body Contact

Nothing is more calming to an anxious dog than its owner’s touch. Once you recognize the first sign of anxiety, pick up your canine friend immediately. Cradle, snuggle and pet them on the sofa.


Anxiety causes muscle tension, and a good massage alleviates the stress. Start at the neck and go down from there. Try to maintain one hand on the dog while massaging with the other. 

Music Therapy

Music helps ease noise sensitivity by drowning out traffic or frightening sounds. That is why many canines enjoy classical music. Plus, harp sounds can be a natural sedative. 


Your pet’s ruffled nerves can be soothed by isolating them in a secure, quiet area. Perhaps there is extremely quiet music playing, dim lighting, and aromatherapy available.

You could also use a crate for time-out sessions. The crate resembles a box. It helps cancel out sounds, decreases light, and provides comfort. 

Clothes With Calming Effect

Calming jackets and t-shirts deliver gentle, consistent pressure to your dog’s midsection. It’s almost like a bab’s swaddling blanket. Your dog can use it during travels, separations, loudness, or fear of strangers.

Learn Your Dog’s Body Language

The more you understand your best friend’s emotions, the easier it is to avoid certain situations. Get away from a circumstance called trigger stacking. This is where something that was manageable last week becomes a problem this week. 

For example, your dog might be ok with having the neighbor’s kids around for 1-2 days, but not for a week. Avoid this by keeping an eye on your dog’s emotional state.

What Are the Different Types of Dog Anxiety?

Dogs may experience anxiety for several reasons. Here are distinct forms of stress: 

Separation Anxiety

The pandemic is every dog’s dream. Their owners had to work from home, which meant more time for their companion. When companies open back up, all the owners return to the office.

This fiasco led to separation anxiety. When left alone, your dog can destroy everything. This behavior may occur whether you are absent for an hour or five minutes.

Why Does Separation Anxiety Happen?

Dogs are sociable creatures, so they hate being alone. Anxiety is brought on by boredom and isolation. It might be due to a past unpleasant experience or from old age.

How to Treat Separation Anxiety?

Take them for a walk before you leave. Get a toy with treats jammed inside to keep them occupied. Don’t make a big fuss about your arrival and departure.

Shelter Anxiety

Many animals that have spent time in a shelter retain memories of being abandoned. They might also have endured a traumatic experience before or during their stay at the shelter.

These dogs may feel worried about unexpected schedules or surroundings. Their anxiety might also manifest as separation problems from their fear of abandonment.

How to Manage a Dog with Shelter Anxiety?

Creating and setting a predictable routine can help your dog feel secure. A behaviorist or trainer may also assist in identifying the animal’s trigger. Plus, they can recommend some calming techniques.

Social Anxiety

Dogs with social anxiety will show signs of barking and hostility towards strangers. Recognizing the source of fear should be the first step in easing their symptoms.

Illness-Induced Anxiety

Abnormal conditions can generate fear responses in dogs. Common ailments that lead to high levels of stress include: 


This condition occurs when thyroid levels are low. It can result in weight gain, hair loss, or fatigue.


Inflammation and swelling of brain tissue require a visit to the ER. It leads to hostility, convulsions, awkward gait, and even coma.


High blood sugar is not just a “human” problem, but for dogs as well. It results in weight increase, excessive thirst, or cataracts.

Generalized Anxiety Disorder

The source of anxiety is not always identifiable. It is possible that the first incident that triggered your pet occurred in the past. It’s also likely that your dog is prone to stress from any change in the environment.

Generalized anxiety is prevalent and sometimes undiagnosed. This is because the symptoms are faint and seem normal. Here are the lists of dog breeds that are prone to these conditions:

  • Australian Shepherd
  • Labrador Retriever
  • Vizsla
  • Border Collie
  • Small-coated Pointer
  • Cocker Spaniel
  • Bichon Frise
  • Greyhounds
  • Havanese

You can help your furry friend by developing a steady routine. Don’t forget to regulate daily social interactions. 

Helping a Dog With Anxiety

If you have an anxious dog, we’ve outlined some tips above that should help improve their quality of life. From CBD for pets to exercising, find what works for your furry friend. The last thing you want is chewed-up furniture.

We also have a range of in-depth tips and advice for taking care of a dog with anxiety. If you’re ready to help your pup feel better, check out our blog posts today.