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How a Hug Can Help Reduce Your Dog’s Stress

How a Hug Can Help Reduce Your Dog’s Stress

Did you know that wrapping your pup in a Happiness Hug may do even more than keep her warm and make her look oh-so-cute? It might actually make her happier!

Numerous studies have shown that gentle, steady pressure has a calming effect on both animals and humans. Just think about how swaddling soothes a crying baby or how comforting it is after a stressful day to curl up under a thick, warm blanket. Researchers believe that this type of constant touch has a soothing effect on the nervous system due to the release of endorphins and other calming hormones.

Of course, humans aren’t the only ones who experience stress. Our dogs are just as susceptible as we are. Some dogs are naturally anxious or high-strung. But even the most well-adjusted pup can become stressed due to a change in routine, loud or unexpected noises, traveling, or going to the vet or groomer. Signs of stress including panting, pacing, an inability to relax, licking the lips, excessive yawning, avoidance and destructive behaviors.

During a stressful event, adrenaline, blood sugar and blood pressure all rise. Cortisol production also increases, which turns off the immune system and other “unnecessary” systems to prepare for “fight or flight.” Afterwards, it can take up to 24 hours for the dog’s system to completely re-set.

That’s why it’s so important to help reduce or eliminate your dog’s stress as much as possible. Something as simple as applying gentle pressure by putting your dog in a well-designed, super soft sweater can help take the edge off. And by pairing a Hug with positive behavior modification, you may be able to help your dog achieve a more relaxed, zen-like state during stressful situations.

While we can’t guarantee that this method will work for every dog – they’re all individuals, after all! – it’s a safe (and pretty darn cute) alternative to try.

 

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