Opinion piece: Anxiety is something that people all over the world can suffer from, and at times, can be extremely difficult to cope with. Even doing simple things such as going out to the stores can be a very difficult thing for some individuals. There are many levels of anxiety and a number of different causes of it.
You could be worried about financial problems, your health, or you might suffer from more deep underlying factors that are causing you an incredible deal of stress. Sometimes the reason for a person’s anxiety will pass, such as the build up to an exam, but other times, it’s a fear of something constant that is always there.
Anxiety in animals
We aren’t the only ones to feel anxious about things. Animals can suffer from anxiety just as much as humans, and in the cases of animals, it can be much harder to help, simply as we are not fully able to pinpoint the exact causes. Dogs for example are prone to anxiety and feeling stressed or depressed.
There are a number of things that can cause your pet dog a great deal of stress. Regardless of the breed of dog, they are all able to feel different levels of anxiety, with each dog being affected and dealing with the stress in their own way.
What causes anxiety in dogs?
Though anxiety can be caused by a wide range of factors, the three most common are fear, separation and age. Most causes of anxiety can be put into one of these three categories.
Separation is a very common cause of anxiety, especially if your dog has only just become part of your family and hasn’t been with you for long. It can take time for a dog to get used to spending long periods of the day alone when everyone else is out at work or school. Dogs who suffer from separation anxiety can cause some minor damage around the house such as chewing on chair or table legs, ripping parts of the sofa or urinating and defecating in various parts of the house.
Fear is another big cause for anxiety in all types of animals, and with dogs, the anxiety can be triggered by things such as new locations, strangers or other animals and even loud noises. The times of the year when fireworks are enjoyed is an extremely stressful time for all animals.
Aging is also a source of fear and anxiety with our memories gradually starting to fade, as well as our physical abilities, in which time it’s a good idea to consider getting a bed for dogs. In animals you may find that their awareness of their situation has decreased and they can often appear in a state of confusion.
Helping your dog deal with anxiety
There are a number of things that you can do to help your pet deal with their anxiety and fears. Physical contact is a great way to reassure your dog that everything is fine, and even massaging them can help reduce their anxiety levels.
Another thing that is very helpful is to take them out for exercise. Dogs love nothing more than to be outside and if you can take them on a long walk every day when you are back home, it will help them immensely.
There are other things that you can do to help such as try and locate the source of their anxiety. Maybe you’ve had some new furniture arrive at your home? Maybe there are noises being heard by them during the day? It’s a good idea to speak to your veterinarian as they may be able to offer you some helpful advice and offer suggestions as to how best you can help your dog.
Getting a good dog bed
One thing that can really lead to high levels of stress and anxiety, not just in dogs but humans as well, is the quality of our sleep. If you’ve ever experienced a few restless nights in a row, you’ll be well aware of how your nerves are and the lack of your ability to concentrate.
A good sleep for your dog is just as important as it is for you. If your dog is currently sleeping on the floor or on a blanket, it might be time to consider buying them a proper dog bed to sleep on.
There are a number of different types of dog bed that you can find in your local pet store or online. There are beds for all breeds and sizes of dog, so it doesn’t matter if you own a terrier or an Alsatian, you’ll be able to find one that fits your pet.
Best dog beds to promote calmness
There are several types of dog beds that can really help when it comes to keeping your dog calm and helping them reduce their levels of anxiety.
Comfort is one of the main factors in this, so if you have a dog that likes to snuggle up and be covered, then you should look at getting a covered or hooded dog bed. These provide a very cozy and warm place for your dogs to sleep, and offer them a sense of protection from the outside world.
Some of the other popular dog beds are nest beds, which take their name from birds nests. These are similar in shape and style, with a rim around the sides of the bed, and a soft and comfortable center where your dog can enjoy a good night’s sleep. For larger dogs, you should consider going for a donut dog bed, which is similar to the nest beds, in the sense that it has a soft center for your dog to sleep in.
There are a number of calming dog beds that are made with very soft cotton and faux fur, which can provide comfort, as well as support for aching joints and muscles. A well-rested and comfortable dog will be able to distress and reduce their levels of anxiety much quicker than one who has to make do with a blanket on the floor in the corner of a room.