In our daily lives, we inevitably come across situations that cause stress — we might feel a little overwhelmed due to increased workloads, time pressure…we even feel a little anxious when we meet new people. Every time our routine is interrupted, we feel some form of stress and we often find comfort through our friends or our pet doggos. But are we the only creatures that feel anxious? Of course not. Dogs also feel stress, and symptoms manifest in different ways.
As a dog parent, how can you quickly read the signs when these unfortunate things happen? Let’s take a look at some of the common symptoms of stress in dogs.
Sign 1: Your dog is barking or whining
Barking is a common form of communication in dogs, but it doesn’t always mean your pooch wants another treat or a walk in the park. Sometimes, our pups tend to bark or whine excessively when they need your help or if they feel tense and want to relax.
You would notice excessive barking or whining by regularly assessing your dog’s mannerisms. The more you get to know how your dog acts on a day-to-day basis, the easier you can read these forms of body language.
Sign 2: Your dog is shaking
Much like people, dogs shake when they feel scared or when they are stressed out. These mannerisms are obvious when they walk repeated routes or shake immensely while waiting for their turn at the vet. To minimize constant pooch anxiety, a combination of exercise, massage, and music therapy is often recommended.
Sign 3: Your dog sheds an insane amount of fur
Shedding is one of the most common signs of stress in dogs, and it’s not hard to see why. Dogs “blow their coat” when they feel nervous around other dogs at the park, when they’re participating in a competition, or when they pay a visit to the vet.
Shedding can be reduced by having the right diet (specifically by consuming more fatty acids), using the right fur brushes, and vacuuming.
Sign 4: Your dog has constant breathing difficulties
Every time your dog takes a good walk or has a fun play session in the yard, it’s normal to pant and feel thirsty. However, doggos that are stressed often find it hard to breathe even when they haven’t done exercise — and as a dog owner, this is something that you should be worried about.
When this occurs, take your pooch to the vet immediately! Panting might also be a symptom of other serious illnesses, like obesity, heatstroke, or Cushing’s disease.
Sign 5: Your dog avoids you
Dogs often feel relaxed, confident, and safe when they are in a welcoming environment. The moment a pooch feels uncomfortable, it starts to avoid people and starts focusing on other things. A common sign of stress — our pups may start licking themselves excessively or randomly sniff objects when they are stressed out.
As a dog parent, it is also important to respect your dog’s personal space. If your pup feels a little awkward for some reason, respect his choice!
While there are many other dog stress symptoms that we could talk about, this article covers the most important ones that you should know. After all, stress is a part that affects a pup’s life as much as it affects ours. Instead of constantly avoiding these triggers, dog parents should be responsible enough to learn how to deal with them instead.