Natural Stress Relief for Storm-wary Pups

The carefree days of summer are finally here again. But instead of enjoying some fun in the sun, many dog owners (and their canine companions) are left worrying about that all-too-common seasonal phenomenon—the summer thunderstorm. That’s because one loud ‘boom’ and suddenly your happy-go-lucky pooch is transformed into a panting, pacing bundle of nerves that makes even the Cowardly Lion look brave. However, before you reach for the doggie Prozac, consider this: the natural world provides an abundance of soothing solutions that are not only safe and effective, but that may help Fido find the courage he needs to weather the next storm in confidence.

The Science behind the Storm

Thunder is the sound created by lightning as the discharged electricity heats the surrounding air. This causes a shock wave to form, and that shock wave can produce anything from a low, rolling rumble to a sharp crackling noise, both of which can leave dogs trembling in their wake. What’s more, dogs are able to sense the change in barometric pressure that precedes a thunderstorm, so their anxiety may begin long before their human companions even notice the approaching weather. Depending upon the individual dog, behavior during a storm can range from mild (panting and shaking) to severe (urinating or defecating in the house).

Natural Ingredients Offer Soothing Relief

Persistent anxiety in dogs can lead to even more serious health problems over time, so providing relief at the first signs of stress is essential. Nowadays a growing number of pet owners are seeking the advice of holistic veterinarians who understand the healing power of herbs and other nutraceuticals. Just as these natural remedies help promote calmness in humans, so they have been shown to help ease feelings of stress and apprehension in dogs, particularly those feelings associated with noise phobia.

Natural ingredients such as lemon balm, motherwort, chamomile and black cohosh root provide a relaxing effect that helps defuse anxiety and ease tension in the muscles. Because of their mild sedative properties, herbs such as skullcap, valerian root, hops and ashwagandha (an Ayurvedic remedy) may also be included. In addition to the herbal components that may be found in a natural stress-relief formula for dogs, beneficial nutraceuticals such as gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), vitamin B-1 and the amino acid L-theanine may be used for their proven anti-stress effects on the central nervous system.

Flower Essences: Powerful Vibrational Support

Flower essences are the natural energy vibrations that resonate from plants and flowers. First documented in the early twentieth century, their unique healing properties have become a well-known natural remedy for a wide range of emotional issues in both humans and their canine companions—including the anxiety triggered by a fear of loud noises.

Says renowned holistic vet Dr. Joel Murphy, “Just like humans, dogs are extremely receptive to the distinct energy patterns or ‘essences’ of plants and flowers, and I’ve found that certain blends provide powerful relief not just for stress and anxiety, but also for detoxification and overall health. This is so important, because dogs today are living longer than ever, and pet owners want to do everything they can to provide safe, natural solutions for keeping them as healthy and active as possible.”

Calm, Cool and Collected

Before that familiar rumble rolls around again, speak with your veterinarian about the natural solutions available to help your dog stay calm during the storm. An herbal anti-anxiety formula may be the first step toward alleviating apprehension and ensuring a healthier, happier best friend.