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Anxiety in Dogs and Cats Part 1

Anxiety in Dogs and Cats Part 1 

Herbal remedies to help reduce stress, relieve anxiety and to help address anxiety-driven behavior disorders in dogs and cats.

                                                                                                                                                             

According to the 2013/14 APPA National Pet Owners Survey, one out of five dogs has a behavioral issue.  Animals routinely experience anxiety which affects many body systems, but especially puts strain on the Central and Autonomic Nervous systems, requiring a whole body, nutritional correction to help restore emotional balance, to help promote relaxation and to reduce nervousness, to help balance mood, soothe anxiety and to provide feelings of comfort and security.

Dogs and cats experience emotional distress related to a variety of reasons including environmental stress, separation anxiety from pet parents or other family pets, traveling, boarding, daycare, vet and grooming visits, thunder storms, loss of a family member or family pet, visiting guests, transitional or traumatic events (new adoption, moving, re-homing), competitive events, neglect and abuse.

Anxiety can also be related to diet, particularly one which contains processed foods including corn, wheat, soy or other fillers. Genetic anxiety can also be a factor. Whatever the reason, common behaviors tend to include excessive scratching, panting, trembling, shivering, urine marking, and occasionally aggression. 

While most dogs or cats are content to chew on a bone or sleep quietly when left alone, others may struggle with separation anxiety when their pet parents leave the house and respond by chewing up the sofa. Many pet owners are surprised to learn that dogs and cats struggle with stress and anxiety-related behavior problems just as humans do. 

Anxiety in pets is a very common problem, representing one of the top reasons for veterinary visits. Animals can also experience anxiety due to lack social contact, confinement to small spaces, boredom or illness. Our animals can detect our moods and feelings and may mimic our behaviors. With traumatic or prolonged exposure to stress, your pet can develop an anxiety disorder.

While every animal copes every day with average amounts of stress that keep them alert and engaged, negative stress can affect both an animal’s psychological and physical well being. Animals are unable to vocalize their stress or may develop negative behavior as a coping mechanism. Stress takes its toll on the immune system and studies have shown that people and pets that experience negative stress are more likely to get sick and are at greater risk of developing serious diseases. 

When an animal gets stressed, messages are sent to various organs in the body, translating into an increase in heart rate, your pet may become restless, agitated or tremble, and they may assume either fearful or aggressive positions. When our pets become overwhelmed by stress or perceived danger, their autonomic nervous system generates a response known as "fight or flight response", which can provoke desperate actions. 

Animals that are constantly in distress may pant, pace, pull out fur, stop eating and struggle with diarrhea; all signs of unmanageable stress. Ongoing stress in your pet's body can trigger excess cortisol production, which can ravage a healthy pet's body and dismantle immunity. 

Prolonged stress and anxiety can also translate into health problems related to cardiovascular disease (high blood pressure and coronary heart disease) and can predispose your pet for greater susceptibility to certain cancers and disorders in the animal body, including diabetes, ulcers, irritable bowel syndrome, memory loss, autoimmune diseases, thyroid problems, infertility, skin and coat problems, muscle tension and fatigue.

Common anxiety factors include: 

Separation anxiety (from owner or another pet)

Addition to family (baby, spouse, another animal, visiting guests)

A new home (relocation, boarding, kenneling, new adoption, re-homing)

Illness or disease 

Poor nutrients (diet which contains processed foods including corn, wheat, soy, meat by product, other fillers, preservatives and additives)

Grooming or vet visits

Emotional stress= abuse, fear, traumatic event, genetic nervous temperament, death of a family member or pet companion, jealousy or rivalry, poor health

Change in daily routine

Crowds, small groups of people and small children

Breeding

Noises, pressure or phobias: thunder, lightning, fireworks, sirens, loud parties, dryers, vacuum cleaner

Herbal Nutrition - (listed in order of relevance and recommendation by holistic vets - human grade meets/exceeds highest safety criteria for pets)

Herbal remedies can help promote a calm and relaxed state and can help your pet manage undue stress. Like pet parents, sometimes our pets just need a little help to reduce stress. Herbal nutrition may help soothe stress, fear and nervous anxiety during stressful situations as well as everyday disturbances; help address sudden and immediate symptoms of stress, such as quivering and panting; help your pet cope with anxiety and nervousness by providing nutritional and natural phyto-chemical support to all body systems to provide systemic whole body balance, allowing your animal to distinguish between a safe vs. fearful situation and to limit destructive behaviors. 

Serenity Zen Dog & Cat - (learn more) is used for its multi-level nutritional and plant botanical support to help soothe, relax, calm, balance and provide pain relief to nerves and muscles as well as all bodily systems (Adrenal, Cardiovascular, Digestive, Excretory, Respiratory, Autonomic and Central Nervous Systems); may be useful for stress, anxiety and behavioral disorders, allergies, digestive colic, storms, fireworks, travel, boarding, vet visits, separation, restlessness, irritability, depression, hyper-excitability, aggression, sadness and fear; to help maintain normal electrical balance in the brain, to reduce neuro inflammation,  and to modulate inflammatory response throughout the animal body. (See Pet Age magazines feature of Serenity Zen.)

Soothed & Serene   (learn more) is used to relax and calm all bodily systems, to help support all aspects of the central and autonomic nervous systems; to help soothe animals exhibiting all types of  destructive behavior due to anxiety, fear, grief, separation, pain, illness, allergies, aggression, socialization issues, electrical and thunder storms due to its calming, mildly sedative and nervine effects that can bridge nutritional deficiencies and relieve irregularity in bodily systems, to help restore emotional balance, promote comfort, relaxation, balanced mood and feelings of security; and as a stroke preventative.

Vitamin Ninja – (learn more) is used holistically as a super food, nutritive, adaptogen and multi-vitamin blend, containing spirulina and camu camu, which may help fight oxidative damage; may help promote a happy mood; may promote heart health by lowering lipids in the blood, may help support immunity and may help prevent disease in dogs and cats; may help stimulate collagen production due to its antioxidant proanthocyanins, flavonoid and glycosaminoglycan’s content, which directly affects bone mass, bone strength, cartilage, joints and joint health, muscles, connective tissues and blood vessel support as well as may help to promote the strength and health of the eyes and teeth;  may help sustain and nourish the skeletal structure of your pet over its lifetime and may be important in cases of arthritis, bone loss and joint diseases, such as Intervertebral Disk Disease and Degenerative Joint Disease.

Bionic Body – (learn more) is used holistically for its adaptogenic immune boosting and anti-inflammatory support; as an antioxidant and for its free radical scavenging (disease preventing) actions; for its nutritive content which may help to nourish the body and strengthen and revitalize bones, eye, teeth, skin and coat; works to stimulate collagen production, a primary building material of bones; may  help prevent dental disease; for its plant actions to help strengthen bones, cartilage, joints, muscles, connective tissues & blood vessels & helps to reduce joint inflammation, while activating a cartilage-protective biochemical, potentially helping to preserve healthy cartilage in aging joint; for its prebiotic and probiotic content to help support native gut flora and healthy digestion; may help to fight off allergies and infections.

Read Part 2 HERE

 

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