Top 3 Ways to Manage Dog Anxiety with Herbal Remedies
Updated: Jun 26
Have you ever wondered if your dog has anxiety? Have you ever come home to pillows destroyed, the carpet is ripped up or the curtains torn down? Or maybe you've noticed that your pet seems more distant than before?
Dogs can be very sensitive to changes in their environments. If you've been working from home a lot lately, you may want to listen up. As you start to go back to work, your dog may experience separation anxiety.
What is anxiety?
Anxiety is the anticipation of unknown or imagined future dangers. This results in bodily reactions (or physiologic reactions) that are normally associated with fear.
Fear is the instinctual feeling of apprehension caused by a situation, person or object that presents an external threat—whether it’s real or perceived. The context of the situation shows whether the fear response is normal or inappropriate. Most inappropriate reactions are learned and can be unlearned with behavioral modification techniques.
Separation anxiety is the most common type of anxiety in dogs, which is when a dog that is left alone exhibits anxiety and potentially destructive behaviors.
What are the common signs of anxiety?
The clinical signs you may see depend on the severity of the anxiety.
Here are the most common signs:
Skin sores due to excessive grooming
What are the causes of anxiety?
Many of the different causes of anxiety can be due to a variety of reasons ranging from changes in routine, new and unfamiliar people, thunderstorm and noise phobias, pain and physical conditions.
Because health issues can lead to anxiety symptoms, we always advise getting your dog checked out by your veterinarian to rule out conditions like pain or other problems first before trying these natural treatment options for your dog.
What are pet-friendly herbal remedies for anxiety?
If your dog is not on the right food, not only can it lead to other health problems in the future, but it may be making your dog feel crazy. Kibble-based diets tend to be higher in carbohydrates, and many of the ingredients are not healthy or even utilized in the body. Learn more about the top foods to incorporate into your dog's food bowl each day if they are experiencing anxiety with our previous blog post here.
2) Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia)
This type of lavender is generally safe for use with dogs to help with anxiety. Lavender tea is a great way to introduce this herbal remedy into your dog's life. Brew a cup of organic lavender tea, throw away the tea bag and pour 1/4 cup for small dogs and up to 1 cup for a larger dog into the food to give them a healthy dose of natural anti-anxiety medicine.
If you are using the essential oil version of lavender, you need to make sure the brand is safe for pets. Young Living essential oils' lavender is safe to use. It is therapeutic-grade, organic and does not contain any artificial fragrances that can harm pets. Start slowly with essential oils by diffusing one drop of the essential oil in an open room so your dog can leave if they prefer. Click here if you'd like to try these essential oils. Another company that is fantastic and safe for dogs and cats is AnimalEO by Dr. Melissa Shelton.
Yup, CBD from the cannabis plant is very powerful at helping to reduce anxiety in those nervous dogs and cats. And the best part is that CBD is the non-psychoactive component of the plant so your dog is not going to get high. If your dog is on medications, then you need to talk to your veterinarian prior to starting CBD, because it can alter the way drugs are metabolized in the body which can lead to side effects. However, CBD is very safe for most pets. When using it for anxiety, you want to start with a lower dosage and then work your way up. This brand is safe, organic and tests all of its products to make sure that they are high quality and effective for your pets. Learn more by clicking here.
There are many natural treatments for dogs to help with anxiety - these are just a small sample. If you want a few more to help your dog, click here to grab our FREE PDF download.
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*Disclaimer: This information is for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace the advice of your own veterinarian or doctor. Dr. Katie Woodley cannot answer specific questions about your pet's medical issues or make medical recommendations for your pet without first establishing a veterinarian-client-patient relationship.