Hi anxious dogs (and their owners too!)
We just got back from a walk and boy is it ever spooky out! There are lots of kids and adults running around in scary costumes and firecrackers going off. As an anxious dog I found it very stressful! Here are some tips that my owners use to help me and my sister stay calm and happy when things spook us out, especially around Halloween:
Tip One: Always Stay Happy!
When your dog gets scared by a person wearing a costume that looks weird to them or a loud firecracker always use an upbeat and happy voice and maybe even try playing with your dog. Us anxious dogs really appreciate that when we are stressed… NEVER yell at us because then you are confirming that there really is something to be afraid of!
Tip Two: Avoidance and Space are Key.
Most of us anxious dogs (especially me!) are very proximity sensitive, meaning we are very aware of how close scary things get to us and get even more scared and anxious when they get closer. Be aware of this and give your anxious dog space. If you see a trick-or-treater coming down the street cross the road so we anxious dogs don’t have to feel stressed about the approach of scary things we do not recognize!
Tip Three: Keep Us Away from Ding-dong SCARY COSTUMES!!
All anxious dogs will be very thankful if you keep us away from the door when all the trick-or-treaters come knocking. Keep us in a safe place ideally where we can not hear the doorbell. This will help keep our stress levels down so we can be calm and happy dogs.
Tip Four: Distractions are Key
In any situation but especially if you are leaving us home alone and we have separation anxiety be sure to leave us with something to do. A frozen Kong works best filled with your anxious dog’s favorite food and treats! Also if people in your neighborhood like to light off firecracker be sure to put some classical music on to drown out the noise and keep us calm. Speaking of calm don’t forget to plug in the DAP Dog Appeasing Pheromone Electric Diffuser and give us Rescue Remedy! And definitely DON NOT let us look out the window at all of the ghosts and goblins walking by the house!
I hope this helps you all! Have a safe and happy Halloween!
Manchego the Anxious Dog