The best soothing treats for dogs

When your pet is overly anxious or upset, the best calming dog treats can come in handy. That said, with anything edible (especially if it isn’t prescribed or regulated), you should definitely proceed with caution. That’s why I contacted Dr Rebecca Greenstein, Veterinary Medical Advisor for Rover. According to Dr. Greenstein, “Soothing dog treats should be seen as a tool in our toolkits” – not a replacement for consistent behavioral training – and when choosing one you should pay close attention to the ingredients. and dosage recommendations.

First of all, you should always consult your vet before starting any new supplementation for your pet. Once you’ve done that, keep an eye out for certain ingredients that have been shown scientifically as being Effective behavioral aids for dogs: namely melatonin, L-theanine, L-tryptophan and ingredients derived from casein, according to Dr. Greenstein. (While Dr. Greenstein predicts that CBD and “marijuana derivatives will be the next big thing for anxious pets,” until peer-reviewed studies are published, “[we] still do not have enough information about the [safest] and [most] effective dosage “, so prevention is better than cure.)

With all of that in mind, here are Dr. Greenstein’s recommendations – and if you’re not up for a treat, you can find calming capsules and food options as well.

1. Basic chewable tablets

“Anxitane is a veterinary supplement that contains L-theanine, which is believed to promote relaxation in nervous animals,” writes Dr. Greenstein. These chewable products are clinically proven to reduce signs of fear and anxiety without causing drowsiness in most pets, so they can be a good option for grooming, thunderstorms, travel, or changing habits. environment. They also have no known interactions with other pet medications and therefore can be used short or long term. (These are suitable for cats and dogs under 22 pounds, but there is a formulation for medium and large dogs as well.)

A reviewer wrote: “They seem to work with my 8 pound Yorkie mut. He takes half a pill in the evening and in the morning. He loves the taste. Recommended by my vet.”

2. Economic treats

In addition to L-theanine, Dr. Greenstein also recommends certain ingredients derived from casein (like colostrum) for calming pets. Pet Naturals Calming Dog Treats contain both of these things, plus thiamine to help soothe your pet without the use of sedatives. Unlike options from other top-selling brands, this one ignores hemp (which Dr. Greenstein cannot “responsibly endorse” until peer-reviewed studies prove it to be safe). The chews have a chicken liver flavor, but you can also get it as a soothing peanut butter with slightly different active ingredients, which tends to be a better alternative for picky animals.

A reviewer wrote: “Wonderful calming treats! These really WORK! I have a Rescue Terrier Mix with a lot of anxiety. She struggles with noises and the like. These treats really work and I’m so grateful I found some. such supportive treats for her. ”

Also great: calming capsules

If you’re willing to use a capsule instead of a treat, Dr. Greenstein recommends this one in particular: “The veterinary nutraceutical Zylkene can be helpful in some cases. It contains an ingredient derived from casein, a milk protein, which has calming properties. Properties. “It is made from natural ingredients that are gentle enough even for sensitive animals without causing drowsiness, according to the brand. It is suitable for dogs (or cats) weighing up to 22 pounds, but it is also available in dosage higher for larger dogs, and most pet owners have found the taste subtle enough to be wrapped in a treat or mixed with wet food without a problem.

A reviewer wrote: “My dog ​​was a disaster every time I left her alone at home. […] After a few weeks on Zylkene she is much calmer without being in a coma like the other supplements I have tried. I give it to her every day in a pill wrap and she takes it without a problem. ”

A useful alternative: calming dry dog ​​food

Finally, if anti-anxiety treats aren’t enough and you’re looking for a long-term solution, you can replace all of your dog’s meals with calming foods. “The Royal Canin Calm Diet Prescription Veterinary Diet also contains ingredients derived from casein as well as L-tryptophan to help manage anxious animals,” writes Dr. Greenstein. As a result, it helps relieve anxiety. It also contains crude fat, protein and fiber as well as cultures that are beneficial for your pet’s digestion. You’ll need a vet’s approval to get it, but you can still buy it from Amazon – just provide your vet’s information at the checkout to verify.

A reviewer wrote: “My father is a veterinarian [and] recommended to try this [for our anxious rescue dog]. It was a lifeline! The times we have exhausted and used other foods, I can clearly see his anxiety increasing. Worth the price! ”


Dr Rebecca Greenstein, Veterinary Medical Advisor for Rover

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