Just like humans, your four-legged companion can experience low to high levels of anxiety. Not being able to go outside due to inclement weather (like a snowstorm) can produce anxiety in a pet that is accustomed to playing outdoors. Or simply leaving your pet home alone can make your four-legged family member anxious. Most of the time once the anxiety-provoking cause has subsided, most dogs and cats will go back to being their normal cool, calm and collected selves. But what if they don’t? What’s a pet parent suppose to do?
Luckily, there are now a variety of ways to help reduce your pet’s anxiety. The good thing is that most of these methods do not require a trip to the vet for a prescription.
- Calming Supplements Dogs and Cats
Your dog or cat can safely ingest these supplements and it will help in calming them down. You can mix it in with their meal or have your pet eat it off your hand. Most supplements are made of natural ingredients such as dried hydrolyzed casein, maltodextrin, magnesium stearate, L-tryptophan, chamomile, thiamine, ginger, or melatonin to name a few. These active ingredients have little if any known side effects. You can purchase them easily over-the-counter without a prescription.
- Pheromone Collars for Dogs
If your dog or cat is easily frightened by loud everyday noises or separation anxiety, having it wear a pheromone collar might be a good idea. Lightweight and easy to wear, a pheromone collar is a non-intrusive way for your pet to stay calm all day and night. How does it work? For dogs, the collars typically use Dog Appeasing Pheromone (or D.A.P.) which is the pheromone a nursing mother uses to comfort her puppies. For cats, most pheromone collars contain an ingredient which is composed of F3 facial pheromones; this is what a cat deposits when it rubs its cheek against an object to indicate it is safe.
- Snug-fitting Shirts Dogs and Cats
Drug-free and easy to administer, snug-fitting shirts or pressure shirts target key pressure points on a dog’s or cat’s body – it’s like getting a big warm hug 24/7. Veterinarians and dog trainers recommend these shirts for pet parents who want to help reduce their pet’s anxiety but want don’t want to use prescription or over-the-counter medications. The shirts come in sizes designed to fit most dogs or cats and in some cases are available in a variety of colors for pets who want to make a fashion statement.
When dealing with anxiety-prone pets, there are many options available which do not require a veterinarian, a pet trainer or prescription drugs. The three most popular ones are Calming Supplements, Pheromone Collars and Snug-fitting Shirts. If you are not sure which one to use for your dog or cat, you might want consult your vet or a fellow pet parent who has dealt with a similar issue.