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DOG / health & care

Is My Pet Stressed?

What causes stress and how you can help


Pets, like humans, can and do experience emotional stress. They just express it in different ways, like chewing shoes or ripping up sofa cushions.

Why is my pet upset?

A major source of pet stress is being left alone for long periods of time, especially if confined and if your pet is young. The more time you spend with your pets the less anxious, lonely and they’ll be.

Of course, most pet parents have to work, so here are some tips for when you’re away:

  • Give your pet interactive toys like squeakers and treat-releasing puzzles. Avoid toys made of material that’s easily chewed apart and swallowed, such as hard plastic or rubber.
  • Leave the radio or TV on at low volume. Some pets like watching other animals on the tube, so pop in something like Lassie, or a DVD made for pets.
  • Consider a second pet. Dogs are social animals and are less lonely hanging out with a buddy. If one animal is enough for your household, arrange play dates with other dogs, or consider Doggie Day Camp.
  • Make sure that when you’re home with your pet, it isn’t all about binge-watching shows and vegging out on the couch. Play with your pets, love them, cuddle them, and make sure they get lots of exercise, including walks. Some cats love to walk on a leash, too — really!
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