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How to spot the signs of anxiety in cats and dogs

How to spot the signs of anxiety in cats and dogs

Just like us, our pets can get anxious about certain experiences, surroundings or changes in the home. 


Learn how to spot the common signs and how you can help your pet overcome anxiety.

Vet advice from our team at Animates Vetcare


What causes anxiety in cats and dogs?

Cats don’t tend to cope well with change, and this can be a common trigger for a difference in their behaviour. Routine or environment changes such as travelling or staying in a cattery can all result in unusual behaviour.

Anxiety in your dog may be due to a change in their environment, routine or even environmental factors like thunder, lightning and fireworks displays.


What are the signs of anxiety?

These can vary between Cats and Dogs and may not be obvious:



Some signs can be easier to spot but there are also more subtle signs of anxiety too.

  • Hiding
  • Pacing
  • Acting aggressively
  • Grooming excessively
  • Choosing inappropriate toilet locations
  • Under or overeating
  • Overly vocal


Some signs that might suggest your dog is anxious are listed below:

  • Pushing back their ears
  • Tucking in their tail
  • Dribble or yawn excessively
  • Hide
  • Panting or Pacing
  • Urinating
  • Whimpering
  • Becoming destructive

How can you help?

Prevention and avoiding the triggers that can cause anxiety is the best way to help your cat or dog. However, there are occasions that changes in their routine or environment will inevitably occur and there are treatments available that can help.

Anxiety products can have a calming effect and help alleviate the symptoms associated with anxiety.

If you have ongoing concerns about your pet’s anxiety, we always recommend you bring them to an experienced veterinarian.

Animates Vetcare have vet clinics and catteries at several of our locations across New Zealand and our caring veterinarians and nurses are trained to treat your pet with love and care.