How to Calm Down a Dog With Separation Anxiety
Any dog breed can become anxious when facing an intimidating situation. Anxiety in your beloved dog can be dangerous if not handled properly. An agitated dog can salivate, gasping, excessive barking, or hiding behind your bed. Luckily I’ll share some tips how to calm down a dog with separation anxiety.
1. Act as Normal as Possible
Dogs are susceptible animals so that they will pay attention to your response to tense situations. Show that all will be well with the usual attitude. If you panic, your dog will panic even more. But on the contrary, if you behave, as usual, the dog will not feel afraid. Some dogs will show signs of anxiety, such as shaking or whining, ignoring their behavior, and acting normally. If necessary, use commands in a tone that is firm but calm when your dog is overreacting.
2. Show That You Are a Full Holder
Perform routine training with simple commands like “Sit” “Silence” or “Stop”. This simple command exercise works so that you can control your dog when needed. When the dog is restless, you can issue the command to keep him calm.
Besides, this can tell the dog that you have control over them, and state that all things are well. This command also functions as a diversion of focus. By focusing attention on something else, the hormones that make your dog nervous will decrease so that the dog becomes relaxed.
3. Offer a Comfortable Dog Shelter or Kennels
Make a comfortable cage and be a shelter for your pet dog. If you do not have more time to make it, you can find the best dog kennels for anxiety. Plan ahead and train Dogs to accept their cage as a safe place.
According to research, a calm environment will stabilize anxiety in dogs. You can try covering certain parts of the cage with a blanket to create a quiet environment for dogs. Also, place the toy in the cage and avoid eye contact. That way, you can encourage them not to be afraid.
4. Understand Dog Anxiety
In stressful or frightening situations, dogs produce hormones such as adrenaline and cortisol. This condition prepares his body for fighting or running away. Changes to the physical dog also occur as physical changes to the heart that make pumping blood harder.
Muscle hardens because it has more blood. The lungs get more oxygen. This change means the dog can become restless because of the habit. So that whenever there is a tense situation, his body will produce hormones that cause anxiety. Because of this, it’s a good idea to understand your dog’s anxiety.
Dog Body Language & Behavior
Recognize the Body Language and Dog Behavior is very important to do
Dog’s body language is very complex and challenging to read because every dog has a different reaction. Some can be dangerous and aggressive, but some choose to run away and hide, but both types have the same goal, which is to find a sense of security. Some of the signs that I usually encounter with a variety of dogs are as follows:
- Diverted vision / dilated pupils
- Bowed posture
- Ears are slightly pointing back
- Brow furrowed
- Sweaty Soles
- Can not control the desire to defecate
5. Introduce Dogs to Small Tense Settings
The introduction of dogs in a captive situation but with a deficient level is also useful as a way to calm the dog when facing a stressful situation. Its called the Desensitization Process.
For example, if your dog is afraid of veterinarians, then take the dog for a walk through the animal clinic. Then make it a habit to sit for a moment in front of the entrance. If the dog behaves positively, don’t forget to give him a gift or treat. This will be a reminder for your dog that the place is a positive thing for him.
But several things must be kept in mind; the desensitization process in each dog is different. Some only do it one to two times. But some dogs need more time to understand. So your patience must be maintained and keep do this training techniques.
6. Attach the Eye Patch to the Dog
Use a cap that is similar to a horse eye patch to close its eyes. Blindfold can relieve his anxiety and reduce visual detail and only let the dog see the shapes of objects, not in detail. Eye patches are best suited for dogs who are afraid of bright lights such as fireworks or lightning.
Test your dog’s eye patch first and make sure they are comfortable. If the dog is clawing at the hat, standing and bowing his head as it looks gloomy, you should remove the cap. Because if it’s uncomfortable, the eye patch will make things worse.
7. Use Pheromones
You can buy Dog Appeasing Pheromones (DAP) or commonly known as Adaptil. Adaptil is a synthetic version of the pheromone usually produced by mother dogs when breastfeeding their puppies.
DAP can make dogs feel safer, calm, and relaxed. You can use DAP by spraying it on a house, car, or other room. But when I try pheromone, it takes two weeks before I feel the effect.