Around 70% of dogs display anxious behaviors, along with up to 25% of cats.
There are occasions when it's normal to see anxiety in pets. Coming home for the first time, moving, having strangers visit the home, and driving to the vet are commonly stressful experiences. However, it can be worrisome when your pet seems anxious all the time and even harmful to their long term health.
Is your pet struggling with excessive anxiety? Are you looking for ways to encourage their confidence and soothe their stress?
Check out these seven awesome tips to reduce anxiety naturally!
1. Increase Physical and Mental Exercise
Your pet may have anxious tendencies because they need more engagement in their daily routine. Just like in people, exercising and socializing can reduce stress in your pet and help them sleep better at night.
Take time to incorporate activity into daily pet care. Ensure you walk your dog at least every 3-4 hours if possible, and play with cats and other pets every day. Healthy treats and praise are a great way to reward your pet for expending energy the right way.
2. Create Safe and Cozy Spaces
Pet owners can sometimes feel annoyed when their pet hides away under the bed for hours. However, it's much better for your pet to hide than it is for them to lash out at people or other pets.
Create several cozy spaces throughout your home to encourage your pet to spend more time with the family. Fill their spot with soft blankets, pillows, and toys. A blanket-covered crate may be the perfect setup to help your pet feel sheltered but included.
If you want to go the extra mile for your pet (and we know you do!), incorporate color psychology into their cozy spaces. Use blue and violet bedding and toys to encourage rest and relaxation. Avoid using red, as this color could stimulate anxiety and aggression.
3. Relax with Music Therapy
Did you know that pets actually enjoy music? Soothing, classical music is a favorite among dogs, but they enjoy almost any music that doesn't have repetitive beeping. Cats also enjoy listening to classical music, but may also benefit from sounds of nature, like birds singing.
Music essentially works like white noise to drown out potentially stressful sounds. It's much easier for Fluffy to relax while listening to Beethoven than the construction project outside.
Play soft music near busy, stressful areas of your home, like the living room and kitchen. Music therapy can be especially useful during stressful events, like having guests over or waiting out a thunderstorm.
4. Diffuse Essential Oils
Do you enjoy a lavender bubble bath after a long, stressful day? Your pets may benefit from essential oil aromatherapy too! Chamomile, clary sage, and lavender are known for their wonderfully relaxing effects on humans and animals.
Gently diffuse essential oils in high-traffic areas of your home to decrease anxiety in pets. In addition to relaxing your pet, essential oils may make your family feel more relaxed at home too. This will make it easier for everyone to keep a calm, quiet tone around your pet.
Always research and dilute your essential oils before diffusing them into your home, and don't apply any oils to your pet's skin. Some essential oils can be irritating or even toxic to pets.
5. Distract and Redirect
You may notice that certain situations can trigger your pet's anxiety more than others. Fireworks, storms, other pets, or visitors in your home may send your fuzzy companion running for the hills. Some pets may even display aggressive behaviors when they feel overwhelmed or anxious.
When you notice your pet having an anxious episode, try to distract them from the situation. Get their attention with a toy or treat, offer lots of praise, and keep them busy so they aren't worried about their surroundings. Some toys, like treat stuffers and Kong balls, can keep your pet busy until the storm passes.
6. Consider Behavioral Therapy
If your pet isn't responding to other ways to reduce anxiety, it may be time to consider more extensive intervention. Behavioral therapy is not the same thing as obedience training, but you and your pet will learn how to identify anxiety triggers and gain confidence.
In behavioral therapy, your pet will practice socializing and engaging with others. Your pet's behavioral therapist may ask you about your environment at home and the specific anxious behaviors of your pet. From there, they may offer suggestions and solutions to try at home.
For example, your behaviorist might suggest keeping the lights dim and reducing noise while at home. Children might be encouraged to whisper around the pet and never grab or pull their fur. Be patient with your pet as they adjust to their new surroundings; it can take some time for them to build confidence.
7. Add Natural Supplements
Some pets need a little extra help managing their anxiety. Natural supplements are a common recommendation from pet behavioral therapists. Supplements are easy to add to your pet's daily diet and help to control their anxiety from the inside out.
With wholesome, soothing ingredients, Poli Pet's natural supplements are an excellent option for supporting pets with anxiety. Some pets can show positive changes within hours of taking a new supplement for anxiety.
UPDATE: Poli Pet Calm is now available.
First of its kind calming pet gummy that is all natural, maximizes bioavailability, vegan and contains Active Carbon Technology. Calm is formulated to help with pets prone to anxiety by increasing positive neurotransmitters and hormones associated with elevated mood.
Minimize behavioral disturbances such as excessive barking, reactions to loud noises like fireworks, stressful events like car rides and much more. Safe for use before, during and after stressful situations.
Reduce Anxiety Naturally
Supplements are one of the simplest and most effective ways to reduce anxiety naturally in your pet. Treating anxiety can take some time, but with a patient and dedicated pet parent, your furry friend is sure to thrive.
With Poli Pet's natural pet products, your pet can receive the best holistic health supplements for anxiety support. Shop our products today and experience a brighter, happier tomorrow for your pet!