Does your dog suffer from canine stress?

Almost three-quarters of pet dogs suffer from at least one anxiety-related disorder, research suggests.

Loud noise, mainly from fireworks and thunder, was found to be the biggest cause of canine stress.

The findings are based on survey data that analysed the behaviour of 13,700 pet dogs in Finland covering 264 breeds.

The researchers are calling on dog breeders to take action to improve canine mental health.

Writing in the journal Scientific Reports, the researchers said: “As anxiety can impair welfare and problematic behaviour may be an indication of poor welfare, efforts should be made to decrease the prevalence of these canine anxieties.

“Breeding policies may help to improve dog welfare, as could changes in the living environment.”

A team led by Hannes Lohi, from the University of Helsinki, focused on several anxiety-related traits, including fear, noise sensitivity, aggression, separation problems and compulsive behaviour.

Almost 73% of the dogs surveyed showed some form of anxiety disorder and related anti-social behaviour such as barking.

And nearly a third of dogs showed high sensitivity to at least one noise, with fireworks and thunder high on the list.

Fear was found to be the second most common anxiety, found in 29% of dogs.

Compared with older dogs, younger ones showed more stress when left alone by damaging or urinating on items.

Noise sensitivity, along with fear of heights and smooth surfaces, was found to increase with age.

The team also looked at particular breeds, and found Spanish water dogs, Shetland dogs and mixed breeds were the most fearful, while lagotto Romagnolo, wheaten terrier and mixed breeds were seen to be the most noise sensitive.

Female dogs were typically more fearful than male dogs, while the male counterparts were found to be more aggressive and hyperactive.

Do you worry about your dog’s mental health? Does your dog suffer from canine stress? Share your views at Speakers Corner in the comments below. 

Does your dog suffer from canine stress?

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15th May 2020
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The vet supplied a plentiful supply of ant-stress pills. So now Rex and I are taking these regularly and the result we are both as happy as Larry who is not quite so keen on the pills but when disguised inside a sausage he woolfs them down.
3rd May 2020
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Guiding Your Dog Through the Pandemic
Dogs are creatures of habit. They enjoy routine and knowing what comes next. ‘When Dad puts on that jacket it means a walk is coming!’ ‘When Mum wears those shoes yippee it’s outside time!’ It’s how the canine brain works.
Whilst we all enjoy a break from the norm, when a dog’s daily routine is disrupted for any length of time it can lead to behavioural issues which may start off as small problems but, if not addressed, can quickly build into a negative pattern of behaviour
Due to the coronavirus pandemic and the huge changes this has caused in households across the country, (although Fluffy is delighted you are at home with him more often right now!) However in terms of behaviour, the disruption in canine daily routine, along with extended periods at home can cause the onset of increased barking, resource guarding, displays of anxiety or nervous behaviours, over-bonding or reactivity.
In an effort to assist dog owners during what could quite possibly be a long haul and to avoid a deluge of serious canine behavioural issues when the pandemic is over it's a good idea to keep to a routine as much as possible if your dog is at all showing signs of behavioural upset during this time.
23rd Mar 2020
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Our two are a bit more sensitive it seems.They seem to feel there is something out of the ordinary. Usually they are excellent time keepers, coming to tell us that it is time to get up, time to go out, time for dinner etc, but lately looking for more attention and cuddles, a head on a knee, and a nose thrust into a hand. Mind you, on the settee in the evenings watching something I probably would not have looked at before with a dog curled up on either side is very comforting!.
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Dogs are just so clever and you are so lucky to have them in this situation as they are such great company!!
20th Mar 2020
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Our chaps are oblivious to everything-all they need are 2 walks a day and food, food, food, food.
17th Mar 2020
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Our Collies are bombproof it seems. Having said that we're seldom out for more than 90 minutes at a time, they know well we will return.

When we return they usually wake up slowly, a scratch, yawn and a slurp of water before checking us over.

I would think dogs get stressed when they're insecure or fearful.
17th Mar 2020
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My two labs are each other’s and my best friends. They are delightfully uncomplicated, joyful every time I walk through the door, excited at every walk, always hungry. They garden with me, chase each other round the lawn, collapse at my feet panting and fall asleep. Nothing scares them, not the vet, noises, strangers; their curiosity delights me as they greet every new person or experience with wagging and leaping up and down.
I do insist that they are not people. I don’t allow them on furniture, at the table, they don’t get kissed and cuddled. They have a warm and comfortable bed and they pretty much do as I ask. Not out of fear but just because they’ve been encouraged since they were puppies to listen and cooperate. Since I’ve been widowed they have become more protective of me, somehow understanding their new role. Gentle though they are, they come to my side if they’re worried about anyone or anything coming too near to me, and will give a soft warning growl if they sense danger.
We’re a team.
17th Mar 2020
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Our little chaps do when they are left alone at home for over an hour or so.

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