People often wonder how they can tell if their pet is suffering from anxiety, a common condition that has many possible causes. Other than drooling and panting, cats and dogs might exhibit certain unusual behaviors that can be indicators of anxiety. The issue of anxiety in pets is often under-reported because some pet owners don’t think their pets need their help.
But anxiety in pets can be just as debilitating as it is for human beings and can contribute to unwanted behaviors such as aggression, digging, circling, barking, howling, and chewing.
If you notice your pet struggling with a new or persistent behavior, or if you’re concerned that your pet is suffering from anxiety, here are some steps to take:
Different Types Of Anxiety
• Separation anxiety
Pets are the best companions we can have, and yet, they often suffer from separation anxiety. This anxiety is usually exhibited by howling, barking, or whining and can often be treated with an anti-anxiety medication for the pet. Some pets will show signs of this emotional stress that’s often misdiagnosed as separation anxiety.
We often hear of cats and dogs being left alone for long periods of time, and some even say the loneliness of leaving your pet is worse than the pain of an animal in pain. However, leaving your pet for long periods of time can cause them to suffer from separation anxiety. It can be difficult to tell if your pet is suffering from separation anxiety and what you can do about it.
• Fear of loud noises
Pet owners of all types are known to have a variety of pets. Some of us have dogs, others have cats, some have other animals, and some have neither. Some of us have pets with specific health issues, but even then, we refer to our pets as “special needs.” Some of us have pets that have suffered from extreme lack of attention, and other’s suffering from separation anxiety. Some of us have pets who choose to run away when someone is trying to get close to them, while others have pets terrified of loud noises. Fear of loud noises is somewhat of an odd phobia, but it is easily treated by a variety of means, including medication, behavioral therapy, and exposure therapy. The good news is that many phobias can be successfully treated if you know what to do.
• Change of environment
The human-animal bond is one of the most powerful relationships known to humankind, and animals can be extremely therapeutic and supportive companion animals. However, animals can also possess a variety of disorders, including anxiety, aggression, attention disorders, and many more.
There are many reasons that dogs and cats experience anxiety, and the interaction between the pet, the owner, and the unfamiliar environment can be a cause. For example, a pet may be fearful of a new home, or the new family member may be too tempting for the pet to resist. Pets may also experience anxiety when in unfamiliar surroundings, which can lead to resource guarding.
There’s nothing better than a cuddly, purring dog next to your owner-provided pillow—but sometimes, they don’t act like they’re comfortable or enjoy being pet. They may not be vocalizing their desire to be loved, or they may avoid you altogether. If you want to know if your dog is in pain from anxiety, look for behaviors that may indicate anxiety. Symptoms include whining, excessive panting, cowering, trembling, and hiding, among others.
Anxiety in animals is a serious problem that often goes largely undiagnosed and untreated. In fact, it’s estimated that as many as 50% of animals suffer from some level of anxiety, and that number may be even higher for dogs and cats. While this has both physical and psychological consequences, it’s usually the latter that is most severe. Not only will anxiety stop your pet from engaging in normal activities, but it could also lead to chronic pain, a reluctance to eat or drink, and even depression. So, what can you do to cure anxiety in your pet?
Anxiety is a common problem among dogs and cats. It is a state in which the animal becomes so fearful and nervous that it is unable to function normally. Some dogs become aggressive, and others become withdrawn and depressed. While some of these symptoms can be caused by other health problems, they may also be just an indication that your pet is suffering from anxiety.