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A Day In The Life Of A Nervous Dog – A Pooch’s Point Of View

Written by ADAPTIL Expert, published on October 16, 2023

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Life can sometimes be quite challenging for us pooches. I know my parents will never put me in any danger, but all the same, I can easily become scared or anxious about situations I don’t understand! I’m not alone either; I know all too well that nervousness in dogs can be quite common. Nearly a third of my four-legged friends suffer some form of anxiety or fear! Every day brings new adventures, but a simple occasion for us nervous dogs can become quite a ride. Let me take you through my typical day filled with all the ups and downs.

Morning Walks – Signs I Might Be Anxious

There’s no better way to start my day than a walk – the thought alone sets my tail wagging! What starts off as fun and exciting, however, can swiftly turn into trouble. Whether it’s the fear of a new space, the clatter of traffic, or even just the attention of other dogs, it doesn’t take much to bring out a nervous dog’s anxiety!

Fortunately, my human is very good at spotting any signs that I might be anxious. These can include anything from shaking, whining, and panting, all the way through to dilated pupils, flattened ears, or a lowered tail. If I’m really nervous, I can even start shedding fur or toileting. The moment my carer spots any symptoms of dog anxiety, they know to move me away from whatever is causing trouble and give me plenty of positive attention. 

One of the best ways to help me feel reassured when we’re out and about is with my ThunderShirt by ADAPTIL. This anxiety vest for dogs works by applying a gentle pressure to make me feel secure and comfortable. My human knows to bring my ThunderShirt any time we leave the house!


Dog wearing a ThunderShirt anxiety vest in an outdoor garden.


My ADAPTIL Calm Collar is another good option. This clips around my neck like any old dog collar, only this one releases calming pheromones to help me remain calm in anxious situations!

Home Alone – Coping With Feelings Of Loneliness

After a nice morning walk, my human heads off to work. I’m not too sure what this is but I assume it’s a place full of excitement and game! Of course, knowing they’re out in the world without me, I can’t help feeling anxious. Being alone for long hours can be distressing and I often find myself pacing around the house. 

At least I used to. My human discovered ADAPTIL Calm Diffuser a few months ago and it’s been working a treat ever since. They simply leave it plugged into the wall and the dog pheromone diffuser emits calming chemicals throughout the home to help nervous dogs like me remain relaxed. Topping it up with ADAPTIL Calm Refill once a month ensures it runs continuously too!

Small dog lying on the floor at home.

Early Evening – Fear Of Loud Noises

My human always returns eventually! I can barely contain my excitement and make sure to react like this is the greatest moment of my life. After all, humans need to feel loved too, right? Those feelings of joy don’t last forever though. This is the time when my human goes about their daily chores and they can often be quite noisy – not good for dogs with anxiety

The vacuum cleaner and lawnmower are my least favourite. The moment these are turned on I’m running for cover to where those scary noises can’t get me. That said, my human has been very reassuring and has been using gradual exposure training to help me adjust. With lots of positive reinforcement to keep me going, I should soon be brave enough to face these loud noises without any fear! 

Dog sitting on a rug while their owner uses a vacuum cleaner.


ADAPTIL Calm Diffuser has been helping me with this too, while my ThunderShirt is always there for a bit of extra support if I find anything particularly stressful.

Helping Me To Remain Calm

I’m very lucky to have a human who looks out for me. As well as using my ThunderShirt and ADAPTIL Calm Collar, they’ve spoken to an accredited dog behaviourist who has put together an individual plan to help me cope with my anxiety. This includes a variety of approaches, from training and counterconditioning to desensitisation. If I show signs of consistently being stressed, they also know to consult my vet! They’re always best placed to offer advice on treating nervousness in dogs and to make sure I’m happy and healthy.

Are you looking for more tips on caring for dogs with anxiety? Get in touch! We love hearing all about your dog’s adventures together and are happy to share our advice for nervous dogs. You can also stay informed about both ThunderShirt by ADAPTIL and ADAPTIL Calm with our latest informational guides and Q&As by signing up for our newsletter!

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Following our expert tips will help to ensure your bond with your dog goes from strength to strength.

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