How to help a nervous pet

The nervous nature of cats was aptly acted by Scaredy Cat and the tough personality of dogs was personified by Brutus, the Air Force K-9 hero. These fiction characters epitomize the characters of the cat and the dog. Dogs are viewed as fearless animals – so tough to have the ability to deal with criminals and to fight animals much bigger than its own size. That dogs get scared is a far fetched notion. What can you do to help a scared pet?

Its true dogs get scared too. Shaking, excessive salivation, accelerated heart beat are some of the manifestations of a scared dog. Although potty trained, a nervous dog can have accidents inside the house. Fireworks display, the sound of thunder and even the ringing of the telephone are ordinary sounds that will scare a fearful dog. Scared dogs will react differently to situations that are considered to be scary. Scared dogs can be destructive. Owners of nervous dogs have to be very vigilant as the nervousness can make the dog react irrationally and injure himself. It is the responsibility of the owner to find ways to deal with the pet’s fear.

Dogs are intelligent animals and to some extent can understand what humans say. Although intelligent, dogs does not have the ability to understand the explanation of the master that what was considered as frightening is in fact not dangerous.

Since talking and making explanations is not successful, a pet owner has to find other ways to overcome the dog’s fears. Dogs, aside from being well loved pets are also considered as the baby of the family thus what an owner has to do to calm the nervous pet is to cuddle, kiss and talk to the pet in a reassuring voice. The presence, the touch and the voice will comfort the pet – for a while but when the pet is exposed to the same situation it will tremble in fear again. The dog must be helped to realize on its own that the situation is not really dangerous.

A better way to deal with the fear is to distract the dog or to associate the situation with something pleasant. The sound of the stereo or the TV can cover the sound of the thunderstorm or the firecrackers. To alleviate the dog’s fear it would be a good idea to close the drapes and to provide the dog with a toy. A treat filled Kong toy will make the dog forget the scary situation as dogs are food and toy motivated.

Find out more about what to do when your dog is scared and first aid for dogs at Sarah’s Dogs.

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