What Are The Signs Of Anxiety In Dogs

Dogs, like humans, can experience anxiety, and it's important for pet owners to be able to recognise the signs. Here are some common signs of anxiety in dogs:

1. Excessive Panting: This can be a double edged sword to monitor because it is a normal behaviour for dogs, especially when they're hot or after physical activity. However, excessive panting, especially when there is no apparent reason for it, can be a sign of anxiety.

2. Restlessness: We don't mean that your dog is always eager to play and run around - this will relate more to when an dog may exhibit restlessness, frequently pacing or unable to settle down. They may constantly move from one spot to another or show signs of being unable to relax.

3. Excessive Barking: Their bark may not be as bad as their bite - but it can be a great indication on how your dog is feeling. Dogs may bark to communicate various needs or to alert their owners. However, if your dog is excessively barking, when there appears to be nothing going on - then this could be a sign of anxiety.

4. Destructive Behaviour: If you've felt your possessions have been targeted a lot more lately - this may be due to your pup being anxious. An anxious dog may engage in destructive behaviour, such as chewing furniture, digging, or scratching doors and walls. This behaviour often occurs when the dog is left alone or in stressful situations.

5. Trembling or Shaking: Dogs may tremble or shake due to anxiety. This can manifest as slight trembling or full-body shaking and is often accompanied by other signs of anxiety, such as panting or restlessness.

6. Excessive Licking or Chewing: Dogs may lick or chew themselves, you or even your furniture excessively as a self-soothing behaviour when feeling anxious. This can lead to skin irritation, hair loss, or the development of hot spots.

7. Excessive Drooling: If you feel that your house has been poorly mopped recently - but don't recall doing any house work - this could be coming from your pup. Dogs may drool more than usual when they're anxious. This can be observed through increased salivation, leading to wet spots or drool marks around the dog's mouth or on the floor.

8. Changes in Appetite: Anxiety can impact a dog's appetite. Some dogs may lose interest in food and exhibit decreased appetite, while others may exhibit increased hunger or a sudden change in eating patterns. By monitoring exactly how much food you are giving your dog every meal - this is a great way to stay on top of this.

9. Avoidance or Hiding: An anxious dog may seek out hiding spots or attempt to avoid certain situations or environments. They may retreat to confined spaces, under furniture, or behind objects in an attempt to feel secure. If you notice your dog doesn't seem to leave their dog bed or crate - this could be a sign that they are anxious.

10. Changes in Body Language: Dogs can display various changes in their body language when experiencing anxiety. This can include flattened ears, a tucked tail, lowered body posture, or dilated pupils. Some dogs may also display submissive behaviour, such as cowering or rolling onto their back. In some cases they may get aggressive to feel that they need to protect themselves which can include them snarling or raising their hackles. 

It's important to note that these signs can also be indicative of other medical or behavioural issues, so it's essential to consult with a veterinarian to rule out any underlying health concerns.

If you suspect your dog is experiencing anxiety, professional guidance from a veterinarian or a certified animal behaviourist can help determine the cause and provide appropriate treatment or management strategies.

Its better be safer then sorry when dealing with the mental health of your furry friends.