Contrary to popular belief, people in California are not the most stressed group in the United States. According to Wallet Hub, in 2019, that title belonged to Louisiana. However, it’s not one of the ten least-stressed states either.
Californians can feel stress for a variety of reasons: the high cost of living, traffic, job competition, family life, etc. An underrated reason is pets.
When dogs suddenly pee anywhere or cats are aggressive against other animals, it can increase the levels of anxiety for anyone. The good news is if you own one, you need not bear it for the rest of your life.
Here are three ways to make your home more peaceful when you have pets around:
1. Think Back on Your Pet’s Behavior
Many pet owners think their dogs and cats turn into violent or reserved animals overnight. In reality, changes in behavior could have been happening for a while. You missed them since these changes can be subtle.
If you notice big differences in animal personality, pause and think back. Observe in your mind how they behaved over the last three to five days. Try to remember any significant event that could have caused them to change. Usually, it involves the following:
- Relocating to a new home
- Introducing a new person (such as a baby) or animal into the household
- Changing their diet
- Modifying their routines
2. Get Professional Help
Like humans, pets can also benefit from professional help. Two of these are trainers and veterinarians.
Schools for puppy training can offer you a wide range of services, such as canine good citizen test or basic obedience. The training programs usually last for a few days or weeks, depending on the temperament or skills of your dog. In many situations, these professionals will also teach you how to train your pooches.
Meanwhile, a vet can check your pets for any disease that might have been causing behavioral change. Sometimes dogs and cats express their pain through aggression. They can also provide you with tips on how to create a less stressful environment for these animals.
3. Give Your Pets Space
Everybody needs space, including your pets. Cats, for one, are independent and solitary. Dogs can be clingy and needy, but they can also become aggressive when you suddenly wake them up from their sleep or disturb their peace.
A good way to promote space in the household is to define corners for your pets. For example, cats would prefer ledges and cat trees over beds because of their hunting instincts. Meanwhile, dogs might want their beds separate from yours.
Inasmuch as you want them to get along well, don’t force them to mingle, but you can encourage them. For example, you can initiate play that most or all your pets can enjoy. Give them time to get to know each other or at least learn to tolerate others’ presence.
Some pets respond fast to positive reinforcements or changes in the household. Others take time. As for you, try to be more patient. Work with professionals when you’re feeling overwhelmed. With persistence, you and your pet will feel less stressed.