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by Felix + Fetch
Summer is over which means kids are heading back to school and dogs everywhere are going to be left alone more frequently. For some dogs this is no problem, but others face separation anxiety. So, we've put together our top five tips to calm your dog's anxiety:
Did you know that music can calm dogs, just like humans? Studies have shown that playing music can reduce dog's cortisol levels, heart rates and other signs of stress. What type do they like? According to research soft rock and reggae music work the best. So before you leave for the day turn on pandora for your pup!
Before leaving your pet for the day or long period of time try to take them on a walk or to the park to alleviate extra energy and shake out any nerves from being cooped up for too long. This will help them be less hyperactive or jittery, and relax while you're away. If your dog gets overstimulated easily, try to avoid other dogs or dog parks until your dog is calm. Otherwise, too much social stimulation may stress them out even more.
Can you believe it? Yes, there’s aromatherapy for dogs! Aromatherapy can be useful in calming down an anxious dog. However, don’t use any essential oils you have around the house. Instead, purchase a vet-approved, specially formulated oil meant for pets. These will include the right balance of oils and be diluted properly. Chamomile, lavender, cedar, and bergamot have calming properties, so we highly suggest looking for formulas that include these oils. Remember, when applying, be sure to rub the oil along your dog’s back and avoid applying to places where they could lick it off.
During the times you are home, reinforcing positive behavior and discouraging negative behavior can be really helpful for the times you are alone. Dogs remember! When your dog jumps, barks, or gets too hyper, don’t immediately reach to pet them or soothe them. This can teach your pet that these behaviors work to get your attention fast. Instead, don’t make eye contact or touch your dog when they’re acting this way. When ignored, your dog can stop this behavior and calm down. On the flip side, when your dog deals with stress positively, don’t forget to reward them with a treat!