The first week of summer is here which means thunderstorms are about to be a common occurrence over the next several months. You may have a dog that shows very overt signs of anxiety during these storms which can be very frustrating. However, there are also lots of pets that may be displaying signs of anxiety that owners are not aware of. Listed below some of the subtle signs of anxiety your pet may be showing.

  • If your dog is super excited to greet you every time you return to the house, this may be a sign of separation anxiety.  This is always tricky to confirm as we tend to think that this is only because our pet loves us very much (which they certainly do).  Confirming if this is due to separation anxiety can be confirmed by setting up a home camera recording when you leave the house.  This may surprise you as your dog may be whining, panting, pacing, or even being destructive every you leave the house.
  • Excessive licking or chewing of the paws is a common sign that sometimes gets mistaken for allergies.  This could occur during storms, in their crate while you are away, or during other “stressful” times.
  • Shivering or wanting to stay super close to you.  My dog Minnie loves hanging out in my office in the hospital with me.  However, on the days Dr. Crumley brings her dog Spock, Minnie will tremble a little bit and force her way onto my lap as I type notes on my computer.  It turns out that Spock likes to bark a little bit more than Minnie is comfortable with, leading to some noise anxiety.  Minnie still loves Spock though and they get along great outside in the agility field!

We would like to invite everyone to Heartwood Animal Hospital next Wednesday, June 29th at 5:30 pm where Dr. Kate Crumley will be discussing treatments (both medical and behavioral changes) for anxiety in dogs to all who are interested. I will be making homemade chocolate chip cookies again as well! This event is FREE and we hope to see a lot of our favorite Heartwood clients there J

-Dr. James Murray