Can you believe it’s almost 2018?! Soon bottles will be poppin’, fireworks exploding and the festivities will be underway! Although we love to send the year out with a BANG, this can often prove to be more stressful than fun for our dogs.
Here are 3 tips to help calm those New Year nerves:
1. Try some pre-party exercise:
Exercising your pup before the New Year’s Eve party can help tire them out when it comes time for the evening celebration. An overstimulated dog will be that much more nervous, so take your dog out for some energy-draining activity that day. If he’s tired, it’ll be much easier for him to sleep through the chaos.
2. Give an herbal supplement:
Sometimes, just a short-term calming aid will do the trick. Pick up a Pet Wants Snooze-Booster Pawsicle with turkey, lavender and chamomile, to help to soothe some of the nervous tension. Or try some NaturVet Quiet Moments Calming Aid Dog Soft Chews that are packed full of thiamine and L-Tryptophan, these bites help reduce stress and tension while the added melatonin helps to promote rest and relaxation. Give your pet a tasty treat 30 minutes before a stressful situation and enjoy his calm demeanor in any distressing situation.
3. Use an acupressure wrap:
Pet Wants Cincy sell a wrap called the Thundershirt. It’s design uses acupressure and maintained pressure to reduce stress. The Thundershirt is a wrap for your dog with Velcro tabs provide gentle, constant pressure. Their website reports that over 80% of Thundershirt users see significant improvement in noise anxiety symptoms. Most dogs respond with the very first usage; some need 2-3 usages before showing significant improvement.
Happy New Year from all of us at Pet Wants Cincy!
Most people are happy about the extra hour of sleep they’re able to gain when clocks turn back an hour near the beginning of fall. While that experience can be a positive one, the same isn’t always true once this new schedule goes into effect. Plenty of people require a few days to adjust to a new sleep pattern. Others don’t like the fact that it is dark when they go to work in the morning and dark when they get off at the end of the day. And for a portion of the population, this shift completely throws off their internal clock and can cause ongoing sleep challenges for weeks at a time.
Since this single change can have so many different effects on people, it brings up an interesting question of if the switch has any impact on animals. While dogs obviously don’t look at a clock and decide what they need to be doing, they do follow a set schedule for different activities that’s driven by their circadian rhythm. Because the change that humans make to their clocks impacts this schedule that dogs internally follow, we want to highlight a few of the disruptive issues dogs may experience this time of the year:
Going to the Bathroom
Even though potty training a puppy can be quite a challenge, once a dog gets in a consistent routine of going to the bathroom, they’re going to want to stick with it. Many owners take their dog out when they first get up in the morning. So if you start sleeping in an hour later due to the clock shifting back, your dog may get quite antsy or start trying to get you up at the time when it usually goes out. Depending on your dog’s personality, you may be able to shift to a new morning potty time in just a few days or you might have to stagger this shift over a longer period of time.
Your pet knows when to expect its bowl to be filled with delicious dog food. So when that important event doesn’t happen right on schedule, plan on your dog coming straight to you for a refill. As with going to the bathroom, the time required to fully shift your dog to a new feeding schedule can range from a few days to a couple of weeks.
Spending Time with You
If you come home at the same time every day, your dog knows when to expect you. So it’s completely normal for your dog to be a little extra excited or even anxious when you first start coming home in the days following the time change.
Because dogs do have such a consistent inner clock, yours may be caught off guard when going to the bathroom, eating or hanging out with you doesn’t occur at the normal time as a result of the shift caused by Daylight Savings Time. While this is definitely a change your dog is likely to notice, the good news is as long as you’re aware of it, you can take a few steps to minimize the amount of time your dog feels like it’s out of its normal routine.
Over half of the adult population in the United States experiences physical symptoms caused by stress. But we’re not alone in facing the negative effects of this condition. Dogs can also suffer from stress. And just like humans, it can take a toll on their well-being. If you’re trying to get to the bottom of whether or not stress is impacting your dog, here are three signs you’ll want to watch for:
- Decreased Appetite
When you feed your dog delicious food like Pet Wants, you know that they’re always going to be excited when it’s time for a meal. So if you notice that your dog suddenly loses the spark it usually has for eating, chances are it’s due to stress or another health condition.
- Sleeping More Than Normal
Dogs definitely sleep more than humans. The short answer to why is they don’t sleep as soundly as humans. In order to get the amount of rest they need, dogs have to spend more time with their eyes shut. Although spending quite a bit of time sleeping isn’t a bad thing for dogs, what can be cause for concern is if your dog starts sleeping even more than normal. Like most of the other signs on this list, stress is one of several health conditions that increased sleep can signal, so be sure to let your vet know about this issue in a timely manner.
- Self-Isolation and/or Aggression
Like people, dogs may need to occasionally recharge by spending time alone. What a dog shouldn’t need to do is constantly isolate itself from humans or other dogs in your household. Frequent self-isolation is a very strong indication of stress that’s occurring from anxiety or some type of pain that your dog is trying to hide. This symptom can also manifest itself as aggression whenever anyone tries to get close.
Helping Your Dog with Stress
By knowing the signs of stress in dogs, you can help protect yours. If you do notice any of the signs of stress or have reason to believe your dog may be suffering, it’s always best to consult with a vet. Even if it turns out to be nothing, a vet will never fault you for wanting to take the best possible care of your dog!
Once you’ve met with your vet and ruled out any serious health conditions, you can help your dog with its stress by making outdoor exercise a priority. Another way to help is creating a designated area in your home where your dog feels 100% safe. And if you aren’t feeding your dog a high-quality food like Pet Wants, switching can help provide your dog with the health support needed to feel its best. Pet Wants also makes dog-friendly Calming Balm infused with essential oils to reduce anxiety. And if your dog hasn’t tried our Housemade Snooze-Booster Pawsicles, they’re missing out on some serious chill time. Snooze Booster has dried lavender buds frozen in a pumpkin and turkey breast puree and cranberry to boot! Just think how you feel after Thanksgiving dinner! Yes please…