What do vets recommend for calming dogs?

  • Date: August 31, 2022
  • Time to read: 5 min.

Veterinarians are the best sources of information when it comes to caring for your dog, and one of the most important topics for canine owners is finding ways to keep their pets calm. Vets are well-versed in the various methods of calming dogs, and can suggest a variety of options depending on the individual dog and their needs. Some of the most commonly recommended methods for calming dogs include providing a comfortable environment, engaging in behavior modification, providing exercise and mental stimulation, and using natural calming remedies.

It can be an overwhelming experience when taking your pet to the vet, especially if your pet is anxious or scared. Anxieties are common among all animals, and one of the most common questions veterinarians receive is what can be done to help calm a dog. Fortunately, there are a variety of methods that vets recommend for calming dogs. This article will discuss some of the most popular approaches, from medication and diet changes to physical and mental exercises.


Calming Medications for Dogs

Veterinarians may recommend medications for dogs that are experiencing anxiety or fear. These medications can help create a calming effect, but it is important to note that it may take a few weeks for the full effect to be seen. Medications commonly prescribed to calm dogs include anti-anxiety drugs, anti-depressants, and tranquilizers.

Anti-Anxiety Drugs

Anti-anxiety drugs are often used to help reduce fear and tension in dogs. Examples of anti-anxiety drugs include benzodiazepines and tricyclic antidepressants. These medications can help reduce fear and agitation and can also be used to help manage phobias, such as fear of thunderstorms or other loud noises.

Tricyclic Antidepressants

Tricyclic antidepressants are another type of medication that can be used to help calm a dog. These drugs work by increasing the availability of serotonin and norepinephrine in the brain, which can reduce anxiety and aggression. They also have the potential to help reduce compulsive behaviors.


Tranquilizers are also sometimes prescribed to help calm dogs. These drugs work by depressing the nervous system, which can help reduce anxiety and fear. Tranquilizers are typically used in more severe cases of anxiety, such as when a dog is overly aggressive or excessively vocal.

Diet Changes

Diet Changes for Calming Dogs

In addition to medications, veterinarians may recommend certain diet changes to help calm a dog. Adding certain supplements, such as omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals, can help reduce anxiety in dogs. These supplements can help reduce inflammation, which can in turn reduce anxiety.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Omega-3 fatty acids are a type of polyunsaturated fat found in certain fish and plant oils. They are known to have anti-inflammatory and calming effects on animals, and can be beneficial for dogs with anxiety.

Vitamins and Minerals

Vitamins and minerals are also important for calming dogs. B-vitamins, such as thiamine, riboflavin, and B6, can help reduce anxiety in dogs. Magnesium is also important, as it helps to regulate the nervous system and can also reduce anxiety.

Physical and Mental Exercises

Physical Exercise

Physical exercise is a great way to help calm a dog. Regular exercise can help to reduce stress and anxiety, as it releases endorphins which can improve mood. Exercise can also help to reduce destructive behaviors, such as barking and chewing, as well as hyperactivity.

Mental Exercise

Mental exercise is also important for calming dogs. Mental stimulation can help to keep a dog’s mind occupied and can help to reduce boredom and anxiety. Mental exercises can include playing games, such as hide and seek, or providing toys that require a dog to solve a puzzle to get a treat.

In addition to physical and mental exercises, it is important to provide a safe and stimulating environment for your dog. This can include providing toys, beds, and other items that can help to reduce anxiety. It is also important to provide plenty of attention and affection, as this can help to reduce stress and fear.

Overall, veterinarians recommend a variety of methods for calming dogs. Medications, diet changes, and physical and mental exercises are all important for reducing anxiety in dogs. It is important to discuss any concerns with a veterinarian before making any changes to your dog’s routine, in order to ensure the safety and wellbeing of your pet.

**Common Myths About Calming Dogs: Debunked**

Myth 1: All dogs require the same type of calming aid.

Fact: Vets recommend different calming aids for each dog, depending on their individual needs and temperament. The best way to determine which type of calming aid is right for your dog is to consult with your veterinarian.

Myth 2: Calming aids work instantly.

Fact: Most calming aids take time to work, so it’s important to be patient and consistent with their use. Depending on the type of calming aid, it can take anywhere from a few days to several weeks for your dog to experience the full effects.

Myth 3: Calming aids can replace good behavior training.

Fact: While calming aids can be beneficial for dogs, they are not a substitute for good behavior training. Training is essential for teaching your dog how to behave in different situations, and calming aids may help to reduce anxiety during the training process.

Frequently Asked Questions

What do vets recommend for calming dogs?

Vets typically recommend a combination of approaches for calming dogs, including behavioral modification, medication, and natural products such as calming supplements.

Are there natural products to help calm dogs?

Yes, there are a number of natural products that can help calm dogs. These include calming supplements, calming pheromones, and aromatherapy. It’s important to talk to your vet before giving your dog any natural products to ensure they are safe and effective.



Anxiety in pets can be an overwhelming experience. Veterinarians may recommend medications, such as anti-anxiety drugs, tricyclic antidepressants, and tranquilizers, as well as dietary changes like omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals. Additionally, physical and mental exercises like regular exercise, mental stimulation, and providing toys can help to reduce anxiety. It is important to discuss any changes with a veterinarian and provide a safe and stimulating environment for your pet.

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