Tips to Reduce Your Dogs Stress During the Holidays
If you own a dog who typically lives with high levels of anxiety, you are well aware that this time of year is stressful for them. For many dogs, the added strain from the holidays makes it even worse. Everyone knows how much stress the holidays bring–even humans.
The same holds true for dogs too; there’s more than enough to go around between holiday stressors and similar causes of concern just like those listed before: having more visitors around each day, increased noise levels due to company over time/extra people at home/fireworks going off outside, etc., unusual eating habits during this period, etc., decreased activity or exercise level due to family members being away too long, etc.
Symptoms of stress: It’s easy to tell when our pup is feeling a little down. There are many different ways they can show us how stressed they might be; one of them being through excessive panting, shaking, or even growling.
A pet owner can take measures to control a dog’s level of stress, which aids in their well-being. These 5 methods for managing canine stress may come in handy around the holidays when everyone is stressed out or any other time of year when it becomes necessary.
Maintain their exercise and routine
Keeping your dog active with regular walks and playtimes during hectic periods of time is just as important. Dogs tend to love running around until they are fully exhausted, which can go a long way toward keeping them relaxed. Short on time? Combine their exercise period with a walk. Also, maintain their typical schedule – feedings and walks – as much as possible so that it feels like things haven’t changed too much when the holidays come along.
Make holiday decorations pet-safe.
Pets are vulnerable to eating ornaments and other objects from around the house during the holidays. For example, common household plants may be poisonous to animals – make sure these are kept away from your pet. Light strings should also be safely secured so that they’re not accessible to dogs who might get tangled up while chewing through them in order to reach food scraps on the ground below.
Watch what they eat.
It is important to keep people’s food away from dogs so they do not eat it. This includes foods that might make the dog sick, such as meat fats/gravy, baked goods, yeast dough, and chocolate. Bones or strings can also hurt them if they find these objects on the ground. Keep any food item out of reach of your dog- including leftovers and trash cans. If you suspect that your dog has eaten anything bad for him; contact a veterinarian immediately.
Give them a safe zone.
When there are too many visitors coming in and out of the house, dogs often become stressed. One way to combat this holiday stress is giving them a designated room where they can take refuge from the constant over-stimulation and noise. If there isn’t such a place available for use, then create one by creating an area with padding/protective coverings/blankets that can provide comfort when surrounded by lots of human traffic.