Common Signs Of Stress In Dogs


Is your dog behaving strangely? Perhaps he appears anxious, if not 'depressed'?

There are a variety of reasons why your dog may be worried. Changes in family dynamics, as well as the death of a companion pet, illness, or surgery recuperation, can be unpleasant for a dog. Even higher voices can make a dog nervous. Stress can also be triggered by a lack of routine, uneven care, or disagreement with another animal.

COVID-19 is affecting everyone's lives, including your dogs', during these stressful times. 'While we can explain what is going on to children, dogs do not understand English.' As a result, it's critical to keep your dog on a regular schedule as much as possible. Changes in habit or inconsistency in interaction can cause anxiety in dogs, so be mindful that your actions may affect them.


  • If your dog is used to being alone for long periods (for example, when you go to work), try recreating this separation by putting it in a different room for a bit and rewarding it with a yummy chew. If you are constantly with your dog, it may be difficult for your dog to cope with being left alone, which could lead to separation issues when you return to work.
  • We may seek consolation from our dogs and spend more time hugging them during these stressful moments. While some dogs will love the extra attention, others may grow uneasy if they are handled excessively.
  • It is distressing for us to be forced to stay indoors. Raise your voice if tempers are fraying, or youngsters may become overly animated and noisy. If you notice that this added noise is stressing your dog, make sure it has a calm, safe area to go.
  • Dog walk patterns are likely to have changed. If your dog isn't receiving enough exercise, go outside and play with him or do some brain stimulation exercises at home. On the internet, you can find a plethora of recreational and brain stimulation ideas.
  • Spend this extra time with your dog in a good way by practising its training or teaching new commands for a few minutes each day.

There could be a variety of reasons for this. 'Older dogs are more tolerant of change and may shun social interaction, while dementia can increase anxiety levels, and joint or muscular pain is also quite distressing.'

Common Signs
Even though pet owners are increasingly aware of how widespread canine stress is, minor indicators can be overlooked. When their dog bites or reacts aggressively, they usually realise there's a problem. Keep an eye out for these early indicators of a stressed dog and get guidance from your veterinarian or a pet behaviourist:


  1. Lip-licking: Lip-licking might be an indication of stress if your dog is licking his lips when there is no food or treats nearby. This is something that dogs frequently do when they go to the vet or when they are in a stressful circumstance.
  2. Yawning: If your dog yawns when you don't expect him to, it could be a clue that he's uncomfortable with a situation. This reaction can be triggered by a child approaching because your dog is worried about what will happen next.
  3. Tilting the head: When you take your dog on a stroll, he'll probably glance this way and that since it's a new experience for him. But if your dog turns his head from side to side in a setting where you wouldn't anticipate it, it could imply he's stressed.
  4. Slumping down: A dog who is crouching or hunched down with his tail between his knees is so agitated that he is on the verge of panic. Some dogs will also try to flee and hide. Stress in dogs, on the other hand, might result in an overreaction in behaviour, such as jumping up and barking excessively. A reprimand, on the other hand, may make your dog feel even more stressed.
  5. Odd bathroom habits: Urine-marking in the house could be your dog's way of ensuring his safety and security. An unsettled stomach is another indicator of stress; your dog may have trouble pooping, have diarrhoea, or need to go to the bathroom more frequently. He could have gone off his food entirely.

What should you do?

The sooner you recognise the signals, the less likely your dog's stress may manifest itself in more serious behaviour problems. Pets can handle a certain amount of anxiety, but a "typical" stress reaction should only last a few minutes and terminate once the trigger has passed. Your dog's anxiety may be growing into fear or phobia if it lasts longer or occurs more frequently.

It's critical to understand how your dog seems and sounds when he's happy and comfortable. Dogs have several early warning signs of stress, so anything that seems out of the ordinary should be considered. If you can, try to pinpoint the source of his concern and eliminate it.

How to Deal with Dog Stress

Finally, if you're having trouble figuring out what's wrong, try these simple steps to help your dog relax:


  • Provide safe, silent hiding places, such as a cabinet under the stairs, under a table, or a blanket-draped dog box. This is especially beneficial for dogs who are sensitive to noise.
  • Stick to sleep, feeding, exercise, and play schedules.
  • Take control of your voice and body language – 'Owner stress or erratic behaviour might cause dog stress.'
  • Try not to get irritated; your pet isn't trying to bother you.
  • Use a pheromone spray or a plug-in diffuser.
  • Ask your veterinarian about specially made nutritional supplements such as CBD Oil which are a natural method to help relieve stress. You can find one easily on Pawsindia.

Considering the scenario your dog is in, their overall body language, and their regular personality will give you a fair indication of what your dog is trying to say.

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