Practical Methods to Calm a Restless Dog

by Pets

Like people, dogs can feel anxious, stressed or restless. Abrupt changes in their behavior indicate that something may be amiss. Dogs communicate primarily through body language, which means we must understand their nonverbal cues to provide the support they need. Therefore, as a dog owner, you should observe closely your dog’s signs of restlessness. Below are some of the prevalent indicators:

– Shaking
– Being too alert or restless
– Barking excessively with no obvious reason
– Being aggressive
– Frequent lip-licking
– Yawning frequently
– Decreased appetite
– Increased salivating
– Rapid heartbeat
– Skin rashes
– Rapidly gaining weight

If your dog has any of these signs and you suspect that they are restless, you should try some of these calming methods:

1. Play relaxing music

Just as music can change our mood, it can calm dogs too. Research shows that calming music helps reduce stress in dogs. Melodious tunes slow down their heart rate, lower cortisol levels and other anxiety symptoms. You can find several digital platforms with playlists designed explicitly for calming dogs if you’re unsure about the music to choose.

2. Aromatherapy

Aromatherapy works wonder to calm restless dogs. However, exercise caution when applying it. The oils must be veterinary approved and designed explicitly for animal use. Also, avoid applying the oil near the nose or in areas that the dog is likely to lick.

3. Exercise

Exercise is vital not just to maintain physical health but also mental well-being. Exercise helps to dissipate excess energy and alleviate stress. If your dog is hyperactive, take frequent breaks during playtime to ask your dog to wait while making eye contact with them. Encourage your dog to remain calm during breaks and not get distracted by other dogs.

4. Practice calming techniques

One of the easiest ways to calm a restless dog is to practice some calming techniques. You can put your dog in a dimly lit room with no external stimuli to help them relax. Additionally, offer gentle physical contact by petting your dog and helping to regulate their body temperature.

5. Reinforcement

Reward your dog for positive behaviors that help alleviate their stress. Train them to understand what behaviors may be counterproductive, such as jumping, barking or being hyperactive when feeling anxious. Refrain from giving eye contact or physical touch when your dog exhibits negative behavior. Once your dog stops indulging in the stress-triggering conduct, you can show them positive reinforcement.

Finally, when your dog becomes stressed or anxious, take a moment to inspect yourself. Dogs are incredibly receptive to their owners’ moods, so be sure that you are calm and relaxed when interacting with your dog.

Read More: Do cats and dogs have a character similar to their owner’s?

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