How To Identify Dog Anxiety: Signs, Triggers, And Remedies


    If you're a dog owner, it's important to understand that anxiety is just as common in dogs as it is in humans. However, since dogs can't express their emotions verbally, it can be challenging to identify whether your furry friend is feeling anxious. In this article, we will discuss how to identify dog anxiety and provide helpful tips to manage it.

    5 Signs of Anxiety in Dogs

    Dogs are loyal and loving companions that bring joy and happiness to our lives. However, just like humans, dogs can experience anxiety. Anxiety in dogs can be caused by a variety of factors, including separation anxiety, fear of loud noises, and changes in routine.

    If you suspect your dog is experiencing anxiety, it's important to know the signs to watch out for. Here are five common signs:

    1. Licking or chewing on paws or skin: Dogs may lick or chew on their paws or skin excessively when they are feeling anxious. This behaviour can lead to skin irritation and infection.
    2. Panting: When dogs are anxious, they may pant excessively. This behaviour can also be a sign of other health issues, so it's important to consult with your veterinarian.
    3. Excessive barking, whining, or howling: Dogs may bark, whine, or howl excessively when they are feeling anxious. This behaviour can be disruptive to you and your neighbours.
    4. Trembling or shaking: Dogs may tremble or shake when they are anxious. This behaviour can be a sign of fear or stress.
    5. Hiding or acting withdrawn: When dogs are anxious, they may hide or act withdrawn. This behaviour can be a sign that your dog is feeling overwhelmed and needs space.

    It's important to note that these behaviours can also indicate other issues, so it's crucial to assess your dog's behaviour and body language holistically. If you suspect your dog is experiencing anxiety, consult with your veterinarian.

    In addition to consulting with your veterinarian, there are several things you can do to help your dog manage their anxiety. Providing a safe and comfortable environment, establishing a routine, and engaging in regular exercise can all help to reduce your dog's anxiety.

    Knowing the Causes of Dog Anxiety

    Dogs, like humans, can experience anxiety and it can greatly affect their quality of life. Here are a few common reasons why dogs experience anxiety:

    1. Separation Anxiety: Dogs are social animals and they thrive on companionship. When they are separated from their owner or favourite human, they can experience separation anxiety. This can cause them to become destructive, bark excessively, or have accidents in the house.
    2. Loud Noises: Dogs have sensitive hearing and loud noises, such as thunderstorms or fireworks, can be very frightening for them. This can cause them to shake, hide, or become agitated.
    3. Changes in Environment: Dogs thrive on routine and changes in their environment, such as moving to a new house, can be stressful for them. This can cause them to become anxious and fearful.
    4. Illness or Pain: Dogs can experience anxiety as a result of illness or pain. If your dog is experiencing anxiety and you suspect that it may be related to an underlying medical condition, it is important to consult with your veterinarian.
    5. Traumatic Experiences: Dogs that have experienced traumatic experiences, such as abuse or neglect, can develop anxiety. This can cause them to become fearful, aggressive, or withdrawn.

    Identifying Potential Triggers for Dog Anxiety

    After you've identified the underlying cause of your dog's anxiety, it's crucial to determine what triggers their anxious behaviour. Common triggers include:

    • Loud noises, including fireworks and thunderstorms
    • Changes in routine or surroundings, such as moving or traveling
    • Being left alone for long periods
    • Interactions with other dogs
    • Being introduced to new people or environments

    Pay attention to what's happening around your dog when they exhibit anxious behaviours. This can help you pinpoint specific triggers to address. Managing your dog's anxiety takes time and patience. With the right approach, however, you can help your furry friend feel more relaxed and at ease.

    By pinpointing the root cause and triggers of your dog's anxiety, you can develop a customized plan to address their specific needs. This may include behavioural training, medication, or a combination of both. It is important to work closely with your veterinarian to develop a plan that is tailored to your dog's individual needs.

    In addition to addressing the root cause and triggers of your dog's anxiety, there are also several things that you can do to help them feel more comfortable and secure. Our canine calming chews are designed to provide both immediate and long term support for anxious dogs.

    Creating a Calming Environment for Anxious Dogs

    One way to manage your dog's anxiety is by creating a calming environment. Every dog is unique, so experiment with different strategies to see what works best for your furry friend. Here are a few strategies to try:

    • Provide your dog with a safe and comfortable space, such as a crate or bed
    • Play calming music or white noise
    • Use calming scents, such as lavender or chamomile
    • Ensure your dog gets enough exercise and mental stimulation daily
    • Use natural remedies, such as calming supplements (after consulting with your veterinarian)

    Training Dogs to Overcome Anxiety

    Training your dog to manage their anxiety can be an effective long-term solution. Here are a few training strategies to try:

    • Desensitize your dog to anxiety triggers through gradual and positive exposure
    • Positive reinforcement training, using treats and praise to reward calm behaviours
    • Teaching your dog basic obedience commands, which can help them feel more secure
    • Working with a professional dog trainer or behaviourist

    Remember that training takes time, patience, and consistency, but it can be a game-changer for dogs who struggle with anxiety.

    Working with Veterinarians to Manage Anxiety in Dogs

    If your dog's anxiety persists despite your efforts, it may be time to consult with a veterinarian. Here are a few strategies your vet may recommend:

    • Prescribing medication or supplements to manage anxiety
    • Referring you to a dog behaviourist or trainer
    • Performing a physical exam to rule out underlying medical issues
    • Discussing environmental changes or adjustments, such as adapting your dog's diet or exercise routine


    Anxiety in dogs is a common issue, but it can be managed with the right care and attention. By understanding the signs of anxiety in dogs and taking steps to address the issue, you can help your furry friend live a happy and healthy life.

    Identifying and managing dog anxiety requires time, patience, and effort. However, by identifying triggers, and providing a calm environment, you can help your furry friend feel more secure and comfortable. Remember, each dog is unique, so don't hesitate to experiment with different strategies to find what works best for your pup.

    Related articles