It is not unusual for dogs to exhibit anxiety from time to time. However, having a full blown panic attack can put your canine friend at serious risk of injury. So, how do you know that your dog is suffering from anxiety or panic attacks? Here are some signs to look out for – excessive barking, destructive chewing, trembling, moaning, excessive energy, panting, howling, vomiting, nervousness, shaking and hyper-salivation among others.
Some of the most common types of anxiety in dogs include separation anxiety, noise anxiety, and social anxiety. Though the cause of this problem remains unknown, it can however, be triggered by a change in routine, a traumatic event or a major life change. The good news is that there are certain things you can do to relieve your dog from this problem. Here are 4 panic attack relief techniques you should try:
Take Your Dog To The Veterinarian
This is the number one panic attack relief technique you should take as a responsible dog owner. During the checkup, your vet will be able to determine if there’s an underlying medical condition that is causing the anxiety. For instance, neurological problems can cause unnatural fear in your dog. Similarly, an ear infection can exacerbate pain if your dog hears thunder and other loud noises.
The vet will examine him for signs of trauma or injuries and prescribe the best medication to soothe his mood. He might also recommend other treatment options such as dietary supplements or visiting an animal behaviorist to help further with the panic attacks.
Seek Help From A Professional Dog Behaviorist
Getting help from a professional dog behaviorist is another panic attack relief method you should try. Such an expert will come in handy to help you train your dog to properly respond to stimuli, which might be triggering his anxiety. He or she will evaluate your dog’s past history and observe his responses, and use that information to provide you with a specific course of action you need to take to change your dog’s behavior.
Show Him Lots Of Affection
Giving your canine friend some extra attention, love and care during panic attacks may just be what he needs to make him feel secure once again. Dogs, just like children, are very simple by nature. Cuddling them and showing them how much you love them can help calm them down and bring them out of the anxiety.
This panic attack relief method goes hand in hand with showing affection. While caressing and holding him, ensure that your voice is gentle and calm but assertive in order to help him know that you’re in total control of the situation. However, if you can’t hold him throughout the panic attack, put him in his crate or in any other quiet spot where are able to keep an eye on him till the anxiety passes. While doing so, keep him engaged with his favorite game or treat. If this happens while you are outside together, it is advisable to use a harness (as opposed to a collar) to help prevent him from choking himself while trying to pull to get away.
Implement any of these panic attack relief techniques the next time your dog suffers from anxiety.