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Don’t Ignore These 6 Signs That Your Dog is Stressed Out

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  • 23 December 2017
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  • Pet Wants

Over the last few years, scientific research has made it clear that stress is a very big health problem for adults of all ages. Given the negative effects that stress can have, it’s important to be aware that stress can affect your dog just as easily.

If you want to know more about keeping an eye out for your dog getting stressed, we’ve put together a list of the six most common signs:

1. Lots of Licking

When a dog gets a pet treat, it’s likely to lick up every last morsel. Although that simply means your dog loves the treat, what can be a sign of stress is if your pup spends a lot of time in other situations licking its nose and lips. This action is one of the non-verbal ways dogs can communicate feelings of stress.

2. Yawning

Like many of the behaviors on this list, a few yawns aren’t any big deal. Instead, they just mean your dog is ready for a nap. Where you want to pay closer attention is if you notice your dog yawning more than normal. Specifically, yawning that’s done in conjunction with other behaviors like pinned ears or avoidance generally signals stress.

3. Excessive Shedding

It’s normal for a dog to shed some throughout the year. But if you suddenly notice that your dog is shedding much more than normal, it’s almost always a sign of stress. This can occur with a big life change at home like moving, adopting another animal or someone moving out.

4. Panting

After exercising on a hot day, your dog will spend some time panting to cool itself down. But what if your dog starts panting out of the blue? Other than your dog experiencing a health issue, this often means your dog is feeling very stressed. Keep in mind that panting can be a build-up to a dog biting, so be sure to give your pet some space.

5. Being Destructive

One of the ways that dogs try to deal with stress is by engaging in destructive behavior. Not only can this affect furniture or other items around your home, but your dog may even resort to excessively licking or biting its own body.

6. Increased Barking

As you’ve probably noticed, many behaviors that go from infrequent to all the time are signs of stress. This principle applies to barking, so keep that in mind if your pet starts seeming more vocal than normal.

If you notice several of these signs in your dog on an ongoing basis, don’t hesitate to schedule a vet appointment. This will give you an opportunity to discuss the best strategies for helping your pet relax and feel better.