One of the most natural ways to relieve anxiety (in dogs and people) is by applying slight pressure to the body. Anxiety vests, jackets and wraps are becoming very popular for this reason. Commercial products can cost anywhere from $20-$100, but this DIY dog anxiety wrap only costs about $5!
Physically touching a dog – petting them and stroking their body – induces a physiological relaxation effect. Touching animals has also been shown to provide a calming effect due to certain pressure points being affected.
This technique triggers changes in a dog's nervous system and chemical responses, and as a result, endogenous opioids, prolactin, oxytocin and other hormones are being released within the body. All of these hormones exist in animals and people, and are designed for bonding and nurturing.
This DIY anxiety wrap secures tightly around your pup to psychologically give him a sense of security that mimics the comfort he feels when you pet him. You can think of it like a constant hug that will keep dog calm and reassure him that he's going to be alright.
DIY Dog Anxiety Wrap
The only thing you'll need to make this DIY dog anxiety wrap is an elastic bandage. I get the self adhesive kind. If you only have the kind that doesn't stick to itself, that's okay. You can use medical tape to secure it.
The size of the bandage that you need will depend on the size of your dog. You can use a shorter, narrower bandage for small breeds or a longer, wider bandage for large breeds (like my Labrador).
Start by putting the center of the bandage across your dog's chest. Wrap the bandage up and around your dog, and cross it over his shoulders. Now, wrap the ends underneath his belly and bring them back up and over his back. Secure the loose ends by sticking them to the bandage or tying them together over your dog's back.
You don't want to secure the bandage so tight that it restricts your pet's range of motion or cuts off circulation. Secure just tightly enough that it's snug and stays in place.
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