Lowering Arousal

09/02/2022

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LOWERING AROUSAL

There will be times when your adolescent dog gets really excited or frustrated by something that happens in the environment around them. This can cause them to start barking, pulling, grabbing or tugging with their mouth among other behaviours. It can be hard for your dog to calm themselves down.

Keep an eye on your dog’s body language and if you notice changes that indicate they are getting more aroused it’s a good idea to step in and give your dog something to do to help them de-escalate.

Activities that involve sniffing, licking or chewing are great ways to help your dog relax.

One thing you can do is scatter treats on the ground and get your dog to search for them using their nose. You may need to move further away from whatever has your dog’s interest before engaging in this activity to set them up for success.

Getting your dog sniffing and seeking out the food will help them to reset and calm down from whatever has caused them to become more aroused.

Practice doing this when out and about in a variety of situations. The more you practice this with your dog, the more likely they are to start seeking out opportunities to sniff when they feel themselves getting amped up. This self regulation is the ultimate goal, but until your dog is able to do this for themselves, your support will help them greatly.

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