There are many reasons your furry friend may experience anxiety. Some dogs are more emotional and sensitive than others and may experience separation anxiety, fear of loud noises, or anxiety around car rides. Your dog could be anxious due to past trauma, or simply be fearful of the unknown. Identifying when your dog is feeling anxious will allow you to help them better cope with situations through training and development plans.
Here is a list of signs to look for to determine if your dog is experiencing anxiety.
1) Having accidents in the house
Dogs who are anxious or fearful may often have accidents in the house due to loss of bladder and bowel control. It is one of the most common dog anxiety symptoms. Humans may also have similar issues in moments of extreme fear. Notice when your dogs experience these accidents to try to identify what is triggering them. Are they happening during the night, or when someone knocks on your door?
If your dog can’t seem to sit still, they might be suffering from anxiety. Anxious dogs will often get up and down and pace around a lot. Try to consider when this behavior began, and if anything has changed, that may have set them off, such as a new pet, new person living in the house (housemate or new baby), or even new neighbors.
Panting is often associated with dogs overheating, and while that is true, they will also pant when they are stressed. If it’s not too hot out and your dog seems to be panting and drooling, it is likely due to anxiety. Dogs will sometimes pant when they are in the car, enclosed spaces, or worried about something. By paying attention to when your dog starts panting, you can work out why they are anxious and begin to take steps to help them cope.
There are two types of shaking that may signify anxiety in your dog. The first is the big shake, like the shake they do when they are wet. If they are doing this shake when they are not wet, it may be due to anxiety. You may also notice your dog trembling, which could be due to anxiety, although it may also indicate a more severe problem like kidney disease, poisoning, or that they are in pain. If your dog is continuously trembling, you should take them to the vet straight away.
5) Barking or whining
Dogs will bark and whine for many different reasons, but by taking note of the scenarios where they seem to be most vocal, you can determine if it’s due to anxiety or something else. Dogs are protectors and will bark when someone comes to the house, or if they feel there is danger, to alert their owners. If they are barking or whining when there is no one there, it is often a sign of anxiety. Dogs have excellent hearing and can become spooked or fearful if they hear the tiniest noise, especially if they are on the sensitive side. It’s essential to help your dog realize they are safe, and there is no threat.