Stress Techniques

Medication to Treat Anxiety in Dogs

There are various reasons of anxiety in dogs. These causes can vary from being alone in a house to encountering a thunderstorm and sharing owner's love with another pet. One of  the most prominent causes is separation from the owner. It is also known as separation anxiety.

You can notice different types of symptoms for anxiety in dogs like excessive barking, tremors, pacing, hyperactivity and poor appetite.  Fortunately, apart from the traditional behavioral exercises, there are some effective yet non-sedative medicines to treat dog anxiety. However, the most effective medication is a blending of both behavioral exercises and medicines for anxiety.

Anti-anxiety medications help the dog to calm down and relax. In fact, anti-anxiety medications are an essential part of treatment for anxiety in dogs. There are different types of anti-anxiety medications, two of which are amitriptyline and clomipramine. You must administer the drugs as directed by the veterinarian. These are prescription drugs for dogs with separation anxiety, so you should not resort to them when the dog seems tense and anxious. Results may take some time so you are required to keep patience.

One of the side effects of drugs mentioned above is over sedation. Benzodiazepine family of drugs like Valium is one such medication. Research has shown that drugs belonging to the family of Tricyclic Antidepressants do not have such a pronounced sedative effect. Clomipramine is the first FDA approved drug for anxiety treatment in humans as well as dogs.

Clomipramine works by augmenting the action of the neurotransmitter serotonin in the brain that is connected with  happy feelings. Clomipramine helps to treat separation anxiety as well as other forms of anxiety. It also helps to control house soiling and obsessive-compulsive disorders.

Although Clomipramine has anticholinergic side effects, it is usually not very significant. It slows down the spontaneous functions interceded by the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. Vomiting and diarrhea are other types of side effects.

However, you need to be cautious in using clomipramine as an anti-anxiety drug for your dogs. See that you are not using other medications with it or using them only as directed by your veterinarian. You need several weeks to see any effects of the drugs on your pet.