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Restless Dogs & Getting Them To Calm Down


If your dog seems a bit restless, there could be a number of reasons why they could be exhibiting these behaviors. Here’s what you need to know about keeping your dog calm.

What Makes Restless Dogs Restless?

Dogs become restless in response to a problem or a situation that’s causing them some sort of discomfort. In many cases, simple empathy can help dog owners easily determine the source of their dog’s restless behavior.

Environmental Distress

Dogs often become restless in response to environmental distress. If you or a neighbor have a contractor or landscaping service loudly working within earshot of your dog, if there’s a thunderstorm outside, a fireworks celebration, or a bunch of guests over for the holidays, this significantly disrupts your dog’s routine. They don’t understand what’s going on or why it’s happening, and they don’t have a way to determine when the disruption will end.

It’s not always possible to completely avoid environmental distress, which is why it’s important to keep your dog calm and occupied during periods where they may feel restless in response to their environment.

Stress Relating to an Event

If your pet becomes restless when it’s time to take a trip in the car or to go to the vet, it could be because they find something about the journey or the destination unpleasant. They don’t want you to rope them into it, and they may actively resist the idea. Working to associate stressful events with positive experiences like heading to the dog park after the vet or giving treats during a car ride can help ease the tension. 

Difficulty Sleeping

If your dog gets restless and paces at night time, it could be because they’re having difficulty sleeping. There could be something disturbing your dog’s rest environment that makes it difficult for them to fall asleep and stay asleep. Physical discomfort can also play a role in nighttime restlessness.

Boredom or Lack of Exercise

Do you ever have days where you just don’t know what to do with yourself? Your dog has those days, too. Dogs that don’t get enough exercise or mental stimulation may become restless out of boredom. They can’t find a way to get their excess energy out or occupy their minds. 

Your dog was made to move around. They need things to play with and explore. If they don’t have anything to occupy their minds, they may restlessly pace or even seek trouble as a means of stimulation.

How To Help Restless Dogs

When you notice your dog exhibiting restless behavior, you can intervene to make the experience more pleasant for them. If your dog frequently becomes restless, you’ll need to institute long-term changes to improve the overall quality of your dog’s life. 

Keep Your Dog Calm

VETCBD Hemp’s CBD oil works to naturally ease mental and physical tension in restless pets. Our CBD is derived from American grown hemp and blended with organic extra virgin olive oil. It’s completely safe for pets and is usually very well tolerated. 

CBD doesn’t get your pet high or make your pet drowsy. Instead, it works to promote homeostasis and emotional balance. Your pet will naturally reach a greater state of calm when they’re feeling restless.

CBD is a valuable tool for situations where environmental distress is unavoidable, such as thunderstorms or trips to the vet. As a pet owner, these things are either out of your control or necessary. The support provided by CBD can make these events more bearable for your restless pet. 

Provide a Suitable Place to Rest

If restlessness is keeping your pet from sleeping at night, a trip to the vet is in order. You need to be sure that an underlying medical condition or illness isn’t creating a barrier to your pet’s ability to relax and get a good night’s sleep. Let your vet give you guidance on what to do in these situations.

Check your pet’s usual resting area for loud noises, bad smells, and other pets or people that may be bothering them when they’re trying to relax. Make sure the temperature of the room is comfortable. If your dog is too warm or too cool, they won’t be able to relax. If the room is drafty, provide your dog with some blankets (they’re exponentially safer than placing a space heater on the floor near your dog). 

Get your dog a plush, comfortable, and supportive dog bed that’s appropriately sized for their needs. If your options are limited, choose a bed that’s slightly too big. This will give your dog more room to move around and get situated comfortably. Of course, if the size of your bed permits, you can always have them tuck in with you. 

Take Chaos Out of Your Environment

If your dog doesn’t like loud noises or lots of guests, limit these situations as much as feasibly possible. If your dog gets restless and uncomfortable when your whole family floods in for dinner, limit the number of gatherings you host or encourage your family and friends to slowly make an effort to meet your dog and develop bonds.

Loud music and loud TVs should be avoided if your dog is made uncomfortable by unpredictable loud sounds. Closing the door to a room where music or TV may be loudly audible can help to reduce the amount of distress your dog feels. 

If you’re the kind of person that likes to listen to very loud music, consider saving it for car trips when your dog will be at home.

Give Your Dog Plenty of Toys and Exercise

Your dog needs room and time to roam and play. Take your dog on as many walks a day as necessary. If you’re busy and you can’t commit the time for a few walks a day, consider securing your backyard with a tall, sturdy fence and making it safe for your dog. If your dog can roam free at their leisure, they’ll be able to manage their own exercise needs during times where you may not be readily available. 

Your dog will need indoor activities as well. Mental stimulation is crucial for a canine’s overall health. They need to be engaged and entertained most of the time. Your dog would benefit from things like puzzle toys that stimulate them more than the average game of catch. 

Puzzle toys reward your dog with treats by solving simple puzzles they can manage with their noses, teeth, and paws. A good puzzle toy will keep your dog entertained for up to half an hour. 

Provide Your Dog with Additional Support in Stressful Situations

If car rides make your dog restless, work towards making your car a place where your dog can feel comfortable. If your dog travels in a kennel, make sure the kennel is roomy and comfortable. Keep your car at a suitable temperature, avoid speed bumps and potholes when necessary, and steer carefully. If you must listen to music, try something with a calmer tempo at a modest volume. If your dog has music they seem to enjoy, play it in the car. 

When To See a Vet About Restlessness

If your dog’s restlessness doesn’t have a clear cause and common sense remedies don’t fix it, it’s time to go to the vet. If the restlessness occurs after an accident, after a traumatic event, or in conjunction with the symptoms of an illness, don’t attempt to resolve the situation on your own. Go to the vet immediately.

In most cases, simply listening to your dog and using your pet parent empathy should be enough to soothe your restless dog. Don’t forget to throw in some extra pets and cuddles to let your furry family member know they’re loved. 



Dog Thunderstorm Anxiety: How to Help | American Kennel Club

A Mentally Stimulated Dog Is a Happy Dog | American Kennel Club

How to Create a Pet-Friendly Space in Your Yard | One Green Planet

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