Like people, dogs can go through periods of stress. Sometimes they need a little help relaxing and calming down. Many techniques exist to help calm a dog, including nutritional supplements, touch techniques and distraction techniques. Each owner needs to evaluate which strategies work best. Read on to learn more about calming remedies for dogs.
Natural Nutrional Remedies
Most online dog product stores feature a plethora of herbal concoctions aimed at keeping dogs calm. Calms Forte and other homeopathic remedies try to relax a stressed dog via gentle, homeopathic botanicals, such as chamomile. The benefits of homeopathic remedies include their gentleness and lack of ingredients producing grogginess. Also, herbal remedies can include a variety of ingredients, including antioxidants and L-tryptophan, to help your dog feel less stressed. Another popular de-stressing agent is Bach Flower Remedies. In particular, Rescue Remedy has been used by many dog owners. Just spray a little on your dog's collar or on his crate mat. Try playing with different remedies to see which one works best for your dog.
Many times, dogs can be relaxed in a stressful situation by something as simple as touch. T-touch, a special form of doggy massage used frequently by animal shelters, can really work wonders at calming a stressed dog. Gentle, light circles made over the dog's head and going down the back soothes frazzled nerves and can relax even the most stressed dogs. Classes are available in this technique, or consider purchasing a book or video. Or, just try regular old massage techniques, making sure to have gentle hands. Sometimes, a little light touch goes a long way toward calming a nervous dog.
Other Calming Techniques
Other calming techniques include distraction and play. Distract a stressed dog by offering him a special treat to take his mind of his worries, such as a peanut-butter stuffed Kong toy or a meaty bone. Or, dogs can often be calmed by having them focus on a task. Clicker-training your dog to perform the "watch me" command can defuse stressful situations. In fact, any tricks will work. A dog that is working with its owner doesn't have time to be stressed. In cases of hyper dogs that need calming, try exercise. A quick jog may help take the edge off, or a vigorous game of Tug-o-War. In most cases, a tired dog is a calm dog.