Stress is more common in pets than you probably think. They get bored, they can get stressed. Something changes in the house, they can get stressed. Construction starts on the end of the street, they can get stressed. Moving homes can sometimes cause stress.
Stress has a powerful impact on pet health, like humans, but they don’t have the same sort of outlets to deal with it. They need your help! So here’s how you can identify stress and help your Pet deal with it.
Kingsley isn’t eating
If your pet isn’t eating like they used to, or at all, anxiety could be the culprit.
It doesn’t always take much to turn this around. You can try:
- Thundershirt – a compression shirt pets find comforting. It works wonders with troubled pets.
- Hormone sprays – lots to choose from to calm your pet. Come in and ask us.
- A crate – dogs are den animals and smaller, private spaces make them feel more comfortable.
- Play! – both cats and dogs need playtime to stay happy.
You should also ensure your pet food isn’t stored in a plastic container. The plastic can leach onto the food.
Have you recently changed to a new food? Has your pet food company changed the formula? Come by and talk to us about your food options.
Too much sleep
Pets sleep more than we do. But you probably notice when your pet is abnormally active or abnormally inactive.
Just like people, pets tend to sort of shut off when depressed. They spend more time sleeping than usual. But, like everything else, they can’t communicate what’s wrong. They get anxious, wear themselves out, and need more sleep than usual.
The tips at the bottom of this blog can break down anxiety and get your cat or dog back to normal. Scroll down and have a look.
Diarrhea, or no poop at all
Anxiety can have all kinds of mysterious effects on your pet. While diarrhea and constipation are often attributed to some sort of manageable illness, some cases can be stress related.
If your pet has diarrhea, pumpkin is a great way to clear it up. We sell natural pumpkin in a can and other natural pumpkin products to help take care of diarrhea in just a few days.
A sign of something more serious is blood in the poop, or whimpering when your dog goes to the washroom. In those extreme cases, visiting your local Vet is a good idea.
Aggressive action toward animals or people is often a sign of a stressed out pet. Most of us have seen pet rescue videos online, and they usually start out with a dog or cat acting aggressively towards the person trying to help. It’s usually not an angry reaction, but an anxious one.
Aggressive signs are often accompanied by fearful body posture and, occasionally, submissive behaviour.
Proper dog training or dog training classes in this situation is a great idea. In some cases, our own anxiety about the situation can reflect onto the dog and the dog can act out even more. Training and learning together can help calm both the dog and the owner.
If your pet is suddenly aggressive, think about what has changed in the home environment and come up with a way to either get the dog or cat used to the change or, if possible, go back to the way it was before.
Isolating his or herself
All pets like alone time, on their terms. But a dog or cat isolating his or herself from other pets and people constantly may be suffering from anxiety.
If your pet seems to be staying away from everybody for an unusual length of time, but isn’t exhibiting any signs of a serious illness, they might just be moody. Just like in people, it happens.
Don’t worry, you’re not helpless!
There are plenty of things you and your family can do to keep your pet stress free, including:
- Make enough time for play and exercise. Your pet wants to run and chase, and doing so can be his/her primary source of stress relief.
- Choose a high quality food. Diet has a large impact on every aspect of your pet’s quality of life. Find the right food for your dog or cat by testing out a few samples and learning about the ingredients.
- Create a safe space. Your dog needs a space to call his or her own. A security blanket, their favourite toys, and some privacy. Find a place in the house and they will retreat for comfort when stress comes on.
We can help with the right food, fun toys and great accessories to keep your dog and cat engaged, active and healthy. Stop by our shop in the Beaches and see what we’re talking about.