Dog Noise Anxiety

Dog noise anxiety may occur in dogs of all ages due to different factors: thunders, fireworks or sirens. Sensitive pets are more prone to noise anxiety; noises may trigger panic attacks. Noise anxiety may be treated, but it needs to be identified first.

Triggers of Noise Anxiety

Noise anxiety can occur as a response to extremely loud noises. The dog is not used to loud noises and he will get panicked if hearing:

  • Ambulance sirens
  • Fireworks
  • Thunderstorms
  • Pressure wraps
  • Loud music
  • Loud arguments
  • TV louder than usual

You may not always be present when these noises occur and notice only that your dog's behavior is changed. You need to be able to recognize canine noise anxiety, so as to be able to provide treatment.

Symptoms of Noise Anxiety

Dogs may develop noise anxiety when hearing loud noises. The dogs will be very agitated. Your dog may also hide under furniture or in the bathroom, thinking that running away from the noise will save him.

You will also notice the following symptoms:

  • Heavy breathing, caused by the panic attack
  • Moving quickly from one place to the other as if looking for something
  • Whining
  • Vomiting, in some cases
  • Barking, the dog tries to be defensive
  • Destructive behavior, in severe cases; the dog may attack the couch or rip his chew toys. This behavior is caused by fear.
  • Aggressiveness

The dog may also want to get out of the house to be as far as possible from the noise source. Dogs have immense power when under fear; they may chew on doors, walls or even metal chains just to get away. So, make sure your dog has an ID tag, just in case he gets lost.

A dog suffering from noise anxiety may be stressed even after the loud noise is gone. You may find your dog chewing or biting on his fur and limbs. Excessive licking may also cause bald spots on a stressed dog. In severe cases, the dog may also refuse to eat.

Treating Noise Anxiety

After identifying your dog's source of stress, you need to make him feel safe in your home. Loud noises may not always be avoided, so you need to reassure your dog that he is in a secure place. If you know that there will be fireworks, you need to plan ahead. Take the dog is the quietest and most isolated room in the house. The basement may be a solution. Also, place your dog in a crate or a place where he feels safe. Put a radio near the crate or a fan and the noise from these may cover the thunders or fireworks.

Try to distract your dog with an interactive game.

Use reassuring words and even treats to make the dog feel more comfortable.

Overexposure to certain triggering factors may reduce the dog's noise anxiety. If the dog gets used to loud noises, he will not panic.

Pheromone diffusers may also relieve the dog's stress.

If your dog's anxiety is severe, the vet will prescribe tranquillizers.