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17 Ways Your Dog Is Telling You They’re Really Stressed Out

17 Ways Your Dog Is Telling You They’re Really Stressed Out

It can be difficult to tell whether your dog is exhibiting signs of stress or anxiety, especially if you’ve adopted an adult or senior dog and don’t know them all that well. As with any unusual behavior, we need to know how our dogs usually act in order to pinpoint that something strange is going on.

Even if you know your best friend better than anyone else, some anxious behaviors are subtle enough to slip under the radar. Make sure you know what to look for to put yourself in the best position to help.

Tail between the legs, pointed down, or only wagging the tip

Tails really tell a story. A tucked tail is a no-brainer for a stressed or nervous pup, but any tail that isn’t “loose” and swishy when it wags is something to look out for. A stiff tail pointing straight up could indicate a warning, social challenge, or sign of aggression.

Panting or shaking

Dogs will pant when they’re hot and shiver when they’re cold, but under any other conditions a trembling body and heavy breathing indicates some level of discomfort.

Licking lips, or excess chewing and drooling

Another tricky yet tell-tale sign. Lip-licking can be a sign of submission in a social situation, but it also signals that a dog is uncomfortable or nervous. Excess drooling during breakfast may not set off your internal alarms either, but finding puddles on your floors might be cause for concern.

Hiding and trying to be alone or escape

Cuddling is a canine trademark, so we can’t say it doesn’t break our hearts to see our dogs looking for solitude. They may try hiding under beds, in empty rooms, or simply attempt to remove themselves from any situation.

Half-moon eyes

When dogs move their eyes to see rather than their whole head, it exposes a sliver of white; i.e. a half-moon, also referred to as “whale eyes.” You see this pretty often in stressful shelter environments.

Ears flattened

This one might is a little more obvious to spot. The ears could be pinned back or completely flat against the head.

Excess shedding

It can be hard to separate excess shedding from normal shedding, so it’s not necessarily an instant indication of stress. This could also be a sign of an unrelated medical condition, so be sure to check with your vet before jumping to any conclusions.


If a dog repeatedly yawns, they’re telling you they’re uncomfortable. You might notice this happening as you wait in the vet’s office, as it’s your pup’s way of managing his nervousness.

Tense muscles

Speaking of the vet, you might also see that the doctor struggles to check your dog’s joints and range of motion because their muscles are so tight. Just like humans get tense when anxious or scared, a dog will stiffen up for the same reason.


In frustrating, stressful, or even exciting situations, a dog might scratch (or bite, especially their paws) even if they’re not itchy. Like excess shedding, this one may need a second opinion from your vet just in case it’s something other than anxiety.

Looking for comfort

We often make the mistake of coddling our nervous dogs, when really they could be interpreting the affection as a reward for their anxious behavior. They may come crawling into your lap or push right up beside you as a nervous gesture, particularly if there is stressful stimuli nearby.

Aggressive behaviors like lip curling or snapping

It’s no mystery why a dog might panic and try to bite or growl at the thing that makes them uncomfortable. This is why it’s so important to monitor strangers and children, since they don’t understand your dog’s body language like you do and will potentially cause anxiety with closeness and quick movements. The same goes for other dogs who aren’t very good at listening to behavior cues. Without proper training, it’s best for your dog’s safety and others’ to keep an eye out for these gestures and avoid a volatile situation before it happens.

Excessive barking

Have you ever left for work only to hear a panicked stream of barks from the other side of the door? Some will blame a lack of obedience training or boredom for too much barking, and that may be part of the issue, but it’s also quite common for dogs to bark and howl as a sign of stress.


If you come home at the end of the day to shredded pillows, trash can explosions, or ripped-up carpet, anxiety and boredom are likely culprits. Take your dog for a long walk or play ball for a little while before you leave them alone—exercise is essential.

Going potty in the house

Separation anxiety is super common, and arriving home to accidents isn’t unusual if the anxiety is severe. Even if your dog is fully house-trained, a stressful situation could cause them to regress. Have patience with them!

Pacing or restlessness

Dogs are a lot like us in this way. Discomfort and stress may cause them to pace and seem unable to sit still.


Constantly looking around or becoming alert at the faintest noise or movement is common if a dog doesn’t feel at ease in her environment.

There are too many reasons to list as to why a pup might be stressed out at home, but a few of the most common include needing (CRAVING!) a routine—feed meals and go for walks around the same time every day, as changes to this schedule can make dogs anxious—boredom, loud noises, strange people, and you! Dogs pick up on how you’re acting and feeling, and if you’re stressed out, they’ll feed off that energy.

The easiest remedy is to avoid potential stressors, though we realize that’s not always possible. Try to avoid stressful situations that you know your dog won’t enjoy, and make sure they have a “safe zone” at home to go to when they need to unwind. A cozy bed, a covered crate, anything away from all the hubbub.

And while proper training is essential to keep both you and your dog happy, exercise is the best medicine for almost any anxious ailment. A tired dog is a happy dog, as they say, and for good reason. Exercise helps remove those excess layers of nervous energy and can make a world of difference managing separation anxiety and general nervousness.

If, after trying to solve the issue to no avail, consider seeing your vet to discuss some natural alternatives before trying prescription drugs. CBD extract, for example, is a non-psychoactive compound available as an oil or a biscuit, and has received positive feedback from many pup parents who give it as a way of managing their dog’s anxiety and other emotional or physical conditions.

The post 17 Ways Your Dog Is Telling You They’re Really Stressed Out appeared first on BarkPost.

Gluten Free Brewing with Robert Keifer – BeerSmith Podcast #171

Gluten Free Brewing with Robert Keifer – BeerSmith Podcast #171

Robert Keifer joins me to discuss brewing using gluten free grains including rice, mullet, sorghum, quinoa, and buckwheat. Gluten free brewing has expanded greatly the last few years to aid those who may be sensitive to gluten in beer.

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Topics in This Week’s Episode (43:40)

  • Today my guest is Robert Keifer. Robert has extensive experience in gluten free brewing and is presenting on the topic at this year’s Homebrewcon in Portland. He has written a number of articles on gluten free brewing here.
  • Robert also references the Gluten Free Brewing site here if you want to learn more about gluten free brewing.
  • We start with a discussion about what gluten is and why some people are sensitive to it.
  • Robert explains the use of enzymes to reduce gluten in regular beer (Clarity ferm and Clarex) and how this can be a viable option for some homebrewers depending on how sensitive you are to gluten.
  • We discuss the common grains you can’t use (barley, wheat) as well as what alternatives are used for gluten free brewing, as well as where an average homebrewer can source these grains.
  • He talks about the use of specialty grains, and how there are many gluten free specialty grains available for brewers.
  • We discuss additional steps you may need to take in the mash to help the grains convert properly and also maintain body in the beer.
  • Robert tells us about flavor and body issues he runs into when working with gluten free grains including astringency and a thin body.
  • We talk about fermentation and some of the challenges in fermentation including the fact that many gluten free grains will attenuate to a much higher degree than barley leaving a low finishing gravity.
  • We discuss head retention and body issues and what can be done to mitigate it.
  • Robert tells us a bit about how people react to his gluten free beers.
  • We discuss gluten free craft brewing as well as some of Roberts top tips for gluten free brewing.


Thanks to Robert Keifer for appearing on the show and also to you for listening!
iTunes Announcements: I launched a new video channel for the BeerSmith podcast on iTunes, so subscribe now! At the moment it will only feature the new widescreen episodes (#75 and up). Older episodes are available on my revamped Youtube channel. Also all of my audio episodes are on iTunes now – so grab the older episodes if you missed any.

Thoughts on the Podcast?

Leave me a comment below or visit our discussion forum to leave a comment in the podcast section there.

Subscribe to the Podcast on iTunes or BeerSmith Radio

You can listen to all of my podcast episodes streaming live around the clock on our BeerSmith Radio online radio station! You can also subscribe to the audio or video using the iTunes links below, or the feed address

And finally, don’t forget to subscribe to the blog and my newsletter (or use the links in the sidebar) – to get free weekly articles on home brewing.

Terrazzo Collection from Nice Digs

Terrazzo Collection from Nice Digs

Terrazzo Collection from Nice Digs

Inspired by what may be one of the hottest materials in the design world right now, the Terrazzo collection from Nice Digs features bold, playful patterns reminiscent of its namesake. The hand-painted leather collars and leads are the perfect accessories for on-trend pups, not to mention the banana, throw blanket, and bed that feature Nice Digs’ exclusive terrazzo-inspired print. Shop this collection and more at

Terrazzo Collection from Nice Digs

Terrazzo Collection from Nice Digs

Terrazzo Collection from Nice Digs

Terrazzo Collection from Nice Digs

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© 2018 Dog Milk | Posted by capree in Beds + Furniture, Collars + Leads | Permalink | No comments

An Open Letter to People Who Walk Their Dog Without a Leash

Dear neighbors who walk their dog unleashed,

Hi! I’m the guy with the tan pit bull mix named Rufus. I want to take a moment and ask you to walk your dog with a leash.

No, I get it. Your dog is amazing and well-trained. You’ve been through extensive training and your dog knows a slew of verbal commands. Your dog is a service animal and visits children’s cancer wards and retirement communities and is the best-behaved dog you’ve ever had. I get that.

The truth is, I don’t care about your dog. When I’m walking Rufus leashed and you’re walking your dog unleashed, my concern is for my dog, not yours.

While I understand you’re 100% convinced that your dog won’t do anything spontaneous, I get it. Neighbor, the truth is that your dog is an animal and any claim that you’re 100% certain your dog won’t do anything is incorrect. They MAY not, but you can’t be certain. It’s simple; dogs are animals and react instinctively.

Instagram Love: Dogs in Flowers

Instagram Love: Dogs in Flowers

Instagram Love: Dogs in Flowers

Since Dogs in Food launched earlier this year, there have been a variety of “dogs in ____” accounts that have popped up. As an avid gardener and crazy flower lady, though, my favorite of the bunch is definitely Dogs in Flowers! Using original photos of flowers, this account takes submissions from fellow dog lovers and creates charming images of seemingly micro-sized pups nestled in various blooms. It’s the perfect dose of “cute” and an account that’s definitely worth a follow. Check out more on Instagram: @dogsinflowers

Instagram Crush: Dogs in Flowers

Instagram Crush: Dogs in Flowers

Instagram Crush: Dogs in Flowers

Instagram Crush: Dogs in Flowers

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© 2018 Dog Milk | Posted by capree in Other | Permalink | No comments