Dogs, like man also get anxious. They too have varying degrees of anxiety levels. Some dogs can easily get restless and nervous with simple things like a car horn or a loud knock on the door. In order to solve the issue, it is important for dog owners to determine the factors causing the dogs to be alarmed. By carefully examining the dog’s body language, one can easily recognize if there is something wrong. In this article, we will discuss the different warning signs that will tell you that your dog is indeed stressed.

Dog’s Eyes

Look at your dog’s eyes from a distance. It is normal to see the white part of the dog’s eyes. However, if you cannot see the white anymore and you observe that the eyes of your pet are bloodshot red, then you can tell that your dog is indeed stressed. In canine, the adrenaline reflex shows in red eyes. It is part of the reflex known as the fight or flight reaction. Also, dogs that blink and squint deliberately may signal that they are mildly stressed.

Ear Carriage

Pay attention to your dog’s ear. Know what is normal and abnormal. A dog may be experiencing mild stress if his ear’s carriage is higher than normal. However, this is not applicable to Low ear floppy-eared dogs because their ears are always carried low.

Excessive shedding

Similar to snakes, dogs can shed as well. In most breeds, shedding is normal. According to research, practically every breed shed their puppy coat. It usually takes place before they grow their adult double coat. Though, shedding is a natural process, many dogs also shed because of stress. If you want to adopt a dog, make sure that your home is a stress free environment because tension and stress can also cause unhealthy shedding.

Damp Paw Prints

Many people when they are nervous experience sweaty hands. This is also evident with dogs. If they get anxious and nervous, they can have damp paw prints. This is unhealthy.

Genital Licking

Some people find it funny whenever they see dogs licking their genitals. Dogs lick their reasons for various reasons. Of course, they lick it for sanitary purposes. Aside from that, the behaviour can turn up as a defense mechanism known as displacement. The dog takes out the frustration and anxiety to a less threatening object like a body part.


A growl is not always bad. We have this notion that bad dogs growl. Perhaps, it is because of the terrifying experience we associate with growling. Did you know that your dog may growl because he is actually warning you? Your dog can be very uncomfortable or probably he is feeling threatened, the only way he can tell you his sentiment is by growling.

Loss Of Appetite

Disinterest to food can signify depression. Monitor your dog’s eating habit. Also, consider the recent events that took place, for example, an arrival of a new pup or baby. These incidents can cause the dog’s appetite to subside. Aside from loss of appetite, observe your dogs for symptoms like lethargy and vomiting. It is best to seek medical attention because your dog may not be receiving adequate nutrition and it detrimental for your dog’s health.

We need to understand that dog’s also have feelings. They feel stressed and apprehensive too. It is important that we know the different warning signs that will tell us that dogs are experiencing stress. At times, after the dog has given us several warnings, a bite is imminent. Therefore, these warning signs should not be ignored.


by Joseph C Ford