4 Ways Dogs Are Helpful for Children Coping With Divorce

Divorce can be a traumatizing experience, especially for the younger children that are in the middle of it. It can trigger feelings of insecurity and abandonment. 

It’s important to ensure that there is a solid support system in place, whether that’s with friends, family or with a pet. It’s been proven that pets, especially dogs, can help reduce stress, depression, anxiety, and ease loneliness over time. If your child is struggling, here are 5 reasons a dog could help them with the transition that comes with divorce. 

A Canine Confidant: Most children like to talk to their pets and see them as a trusted friend who they can share everything with. From their deepest fears to their biggest dreams, dogs provide a trusted ear to listen attentively and without judgment. Although they may not be able to respond, dogs encourage children to express their feelings honestly. 

An Added Sense of Security: According to Indianapolis child support lawyer, Angela Trapp, “When a divorce case involves children, resolving issues regarding their care and wellbeing can be especially delicate.” Introducing a dog to a child in the middle of a divorce will give them another source to help them feel secure during this uncertain time.

Lower Stress Levels: According to numerous studies, dogs can reduce stress in people, resulting in lower blood pressure and heart rates. For a child, a dog would be an extremely valuable tool for coping with the new life changes that divorce brings. Dogs are seen as a source of joy and laughter, as well as a reminder of how much fun life can be! 

Provide Unconditional Love: Dogs have always been a great source of unconditional love and support. During a time where everything is changing and there is so much instability, a beloved dog will always be there to love and comfort them.

Having a trusted buddy during a stressful time is a wonderful way to stay positive. If you are worried about your child and how they will cope with your divorce, consider adding a new furry friend to the family!

Understanding Dog Anxiety: Symptoms & Treatment

Just like their human friends, dogs can experience anxiety as well. All breeds can experience dog anxiety but ultimately, it can affect each dog differently. While it’s normal and healthy to experience anxiety occasionally, dogs who experience disproportionate levels of anxiety are more likely to have it turn into a full-blown disorder. If these issues are not tackled early on, this disorder can lead to behavioral issues including aggression, depression and compulsive behaviors. 

Not sure if your dog has anxiety? Continue reading to learn more about the common causes, symptoms and treatments for dog anxiety.

Common Causes of Dog Anxiety

According to studies, there are three types of dog anxiety including fear anxiety, separation anxiety, and aging anxiety. 

Fear-related anxiety can be triggered by many things, such as loud noises, visual stimuli, new or strange environments, or strange animals and people. Most dogs will have a brief reaction to these factors, but dogs with anxiety will have a longer-lasting reaction.

Separation anxiety is unable to be comfortable when they are separated from their family members or when left alone. This represents itself in disruptive behavior such as barking and destroying furniture. 

Age-related anxiety is more often seen in older dogs when their memory, learning and awareness starts to decline. 

What are the Symptoms of Dog Anxiety?

If you suspect your dog has anxiety, here are several important symptoms to keep an eye out for:

  • Compulsive behavior
  • Pacing
  • Restlessness
  • Excessive Barking
  • Depression
  • Drooling
  • Aggression
  • Panting
  • Urinating or defecating in the house
  • Destructive behavior

While some of these may be the result of occasional anxiety-causing events, recurrent symptoms should not be ignored. Especially aggression, which can lead to your dog injuring you, themselves or another person. In particular, dog bite injuries not only lead to serious physical injuries, …” but can also cause severe emotional trauma,” according to Omaha dog bite attorney, James W. Knowles Jr.

After reviewing the symptoms, having your dog examined and officially being diagnosed as having dog anxiety, it’s important to come up with a plan to treat their anxiety. 

How to Treat a Dog With Anxiety

There are 2 common ways to deal with dog anxiety, including behavior medication techniques and medication. The goal of techniques is to decrease the emotional or aggressive reaction to a specific stimulus. 

Desensitization, one of the more common techniques, is the repeated, controlled exposure to the stimulus that usually causes a fearful or anxious response. 

Another method called “counter-conditioning” is known as training the dog to replace the fearful or anxiety-induced behavior with positive behavior.

Another option is medication, which will require occasional tests to ensure your dog is processing and eliminating the medications appropriately. 

While working with your dog on his or her anxiety can be time-consuming and stressful, it’s also extremely rewarding for your dog and their quality of life. If you have any questions about your dog’s anxiety or detect any symptoms, contact your veterinarian to learn more about what you can do to help.

10 “Healthy” Foods That Can Make Your Dog Sick

In many homes, dogs are not only man’s best friend, but they’re also a part of the family. According to the 2017-2018 APPA National Pet Owners Survey, roughly 68% of households in the United States own a pet, with dogs being one of the most common. As fun and rewarding as owning a dog can be, it’s very important to remember that they also need special care and attention in many aspects of their lives.

A dog chewing up one of your favorite shoes is frustrating, but a dog digging around in your pantry or garbage could be extremely dangerous. Most simple ingredients that you’d use to season or garnish a meal can actually cause a range of mild to severe reactions in your pet, which could potentially cause aggressive behavior. When dogs don’t feel well, they can act out by biting or growling, which could result in the need for a dog bite lawyer. While there are many delicious human foods that are beneficial for dogs to snack on, there are also just as many to stay far away from. Here are 10 “healthy” treats you should avoid feeding to your dog:

Mushrooms

The mushrooms that are found in the grocery store are safe for human consumption but that doesn’t mean it’s also safe for your dog. Certain types, especially the wild variety, can cause a slow poisoning in animals that both you and your dog are unaware of.

Onions

While onions can be a great way to add extra flavor to your favorite meal, they can cause serious internal problems for your pet. One of the ingredients in onions, thiosulphate, can destroy red blood cells and cause anemia in dogs.

Grapes

These sweet treats may be the perfect size for a small snack but they can cause serious kidney problems for your dog. It’s important to keep grapes out of reach, as just a small amount can lead to kidney failure and death.

Macadamia nuts

Whether served whole or mixed into a cookie, macadamia nuts are not dog-friendly in any form. In addition to being high in fat and salt, these nuts are especially dangerous due to their potential to cause life-threatening tremors.

Garlic

This common flavorful addition causes the same problems in dogs as an onion would. It is especially potent in thiosulphate and can severely damage your pets red blood cells.

Raw fish

Raw fish can be a great source of Omega-3 fatty acids for humans but certain raw varieties, such as salmon and trout, can negatively impact the health of your furry friend. Uncooked salmon can contain parasites that have been proven to be fatal to dogs. If you’re planning a special fish dinner for your pet, be sure to cook it at a high temperature before serving.

Fruit with pits

Cherries, peaches, and plums should be kept far away from dogs of all sizes. The pits can not only cause your pet to choke, but this part of the fruit contains poisonous cyanide.

Avocados

Keep the avocado toast to yourself! Avocados contain high levels of persin, which can be highly toxic in large quantities.

Cooked bones

Nibbling on bones is one of a dog’s favorite things to do. Unfortunately, cooked bones are not the best option to give to your pet. During the cooking process, most of the moisture is lost, leaving it brittle and dry. These dry edges can result in splinters that can damage their teeth and even puncture their digestive tract.

Chocolate

It doesn’t matter if it’s dark chocolate or milk chocolate, all types are off limits. Chocolate toxicity can cause vomiting, seizures and even death due to the ingredient theobromine, which is poisonous to pets.

Owning a dog not only brings a lot of happiness but also a great amount of responsibility as well. Be sure to take extra steps to ensure their safety when it comes to toxic foods they can easily ingest. For example, regularly clear the yard of any wild mushrooms that may be growing or keep food stored on high surfaces that are well out of reach. Remember, your dog is much more than just an animal, they’re family!