Shyness

Natural confidence building remedies to reduce shyness and help timid cats and dogs socialize.

confidence building remedies for timid cats and dogs to reduce shyness

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  1. What is Shyness?
  2. What Causes Shyness?
  3. Help for Shyness
  4. More Information on Shyness

What is Shyness?

Just like people, our pets come with different temperaments and personalities. Some are outgoing and friendly, while others tend to be a little shy and may need a little time to warm up to new people or unfamiliar animals. It can become concerning when a pet is overly shy, and in most cases, these pets lack confidence and are more anxious than other pets.

Very shy pets often cower away from people and become scared in new situations or around unfamiliar people. They may be more solitary and interact less with the other pets, or always seem to be on the outskirts of the action.

Some shy pets also constantly seek your approval and may display a number of neurotic behaviors when they are anxious such as tucking their tail between their legs, over-grooming, urinating at inappropriate moments, running away or submissively rolling over. Keep in mind that when some animals become very frightened, they can become aggressive. A shy dog may end up biting a stranger if it feels cornered.

What Causes Shyness?

While there will always be the debate between nature and nurture, there is usually no cut and dry answer to why some pets are shy and others aren’t. Some suggest that it is a personality trait that they were born with, while others propose that it was a result of their social and environmental experiences within the first few months of life.

In some cases shyness can be the result of previous abuse or mistreatment, making it a fairly common trait in older pets adopted from shelters. Whatever the underlying cause, shyness is not something that needs to be a problem and with some confidence building exercises and calming measures, you can help your shy pet become more self-assured and calm.

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Help for Shyness

Natural remedies

As a prominent symptom of shyness is fear and anxiety, natural herbal and homeopathic ingredients with calming and anxiety-reducing properties have been very beneficial for treating shy and timid pets. The tropical herb, Passiflora incarnata has excellent calming and anti-anxiety effects and is often used to treat anxiety, shock and tension.

Scullcap is also well known for its soothing and relaxing qualities and has been used as a natural way to treat a number of anxiety disorders. Lastly, the biochemic tissue salt Kali. Phos. helps relax those with nervous dispositions or those sensitive to change or stress.

More Information on Shyness

Tips for building confidence in shy pets
  • Try gradually desensitizing your pet to social situations. When new people come over, warn them that your pet is shy and suggest that they ignore them initially. This will allow your pet to gauge the situation and slowly come over on his or her own terms. At most guest should offer a hand to let your pet sniff them and assess that there is no danger. If your pet is ok with this, then they can gentle stroke them.
  • Let guests or new people offer your shy pet a treat. Eventually new people welcomed into the house will be seen as an opportunity for reward and they’ll slowly become friendlier.
  • Puppy socialization and obedience training are great ways to encourage your shy dog to become more confident and less afraid of social settings. Rewards and the constant approval given in these classes will make your dog feel a sense of accomplishment which is a great way to build confidence.
  • Reward good behavior at home. Many people get into a bad habit of reprimanding bad behavior while forgetting to reward the good behaviors. Rewards will help your pet feel more confident and build the trust between you.
  • Encourage exercise. Exercise helps top reduce stress and build confidence. A fun game of catch in the park with a shy dog, or a good game of mouse on a string for a shy cat can help greatly.

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