Reviewed By Joana Garrido DVM
If your pup’s anxiety is off the leash, it’s time to try homemade calming dog treats! This article will share 4 easy recipes for homemade calming treats that contain natural ingredients to soothe their restlessness and nerves.
First thing First: Understanding Canine Anxiety
Canine anxiety is expressed in various ways, including nervousness, running away and hiding, shivering, panting, drooling, barking, obsessive and compulsive behaviors, aggressive behavior, and granulomas caused by excessive cleaning or licking.
If you notice any of these signs in your furry friend, it’s important to visit your veterinarian to rule out any underlying medical conditions.
Once medical issues have been ruled out, natural remedies such as a balanced diet, exercise, routine, behavioral training, music, cognitive stimulation, pheromones, grooming, and homemade calming treats can help reduce anxiety.
Why Are Homemade Calming Treats Good for Dogs?
Homemade calming treats for dogs refer to doggy snacks created at home containing herbs with relaxing properties.
These treats can be fed to your pooch whenever he feels anxious to soothe his nerves and calm him down.
They are low-cost substitutes for commercial calming dog treats, which are great for pawrents who are on a tight budget.
Benefits of Homemade Calming Treats for Dogs
Homemade calming treats for dogs work well in soothing mild to moderate cases of anxiety in canines. They are useful for various kinds of stress-inducing situations such as:
- Travel anxiety
- Separation anxiety
- Noise anxiety
- Sleep deprivation
Homemade calming dog treats are ineffective in calming down dogs with severe anxiety.
If your canine companion is suffering from this behavior problem, work with the vet and a canine behaviorist to determine the best type of treatment for him.
4 Recipes for Homemade Calming Treats for Dogs
1. Chamomile Gummy Calming Treats for Dogs
Chamomile is a great calming aid for dogs since it functions as a muscle relaxant and mild sedative. You can use chamomile in various ways to help soothe your pup’s nerves.
You can blend the dry herb directly into your dog’s wet food, steep it in their water bowl to create a calming “herbal tea,” or use it as an ingredient in homemade dog treats.
- ¼ cup unsweetened, xylitol-free peanut butter
- 1 cup low-sodium beef broth
- 1 chamomile tea bag
- 3 tablespoons unflavored powdered gelatin
- In a small pot, steep the chamomile tea for 5 to 10 minutes. Transfer to a cup and set aside.
- Pour the beef broth into a pot and stir under medium heat.
- Once the broth starts steaming, remove it from the heat.
- Mix the powdered gelatin into the broth. Wait for 5 minutes to allow the gelatin to form.
- Stir with a whisk until no clumps remain but only a foamy consistency.
- Add the peanut butter and chamomile tea. Mix thoroughly until everything is well-incorporated.
- Place the chamomile gummy calming treats for dogs on a silicone mold. Let it chill in the fridge for 2 to 4 hours.
- Feed the calming dog treats to your pup. Place any leftovers in an airtight container and store them in the fridge for 4 days.
- The antispasmodic properties in chamomile help relieve anxiety-induced nausea during car rides.
- Consider lightly smothering coconut oil on the silicone molds to prevent the gelatin dog-calming treats from sticking.
- Avoid high temperatures when letting the gelatin form as they lower its setting strength.
- Although chamomile is known to help with anxiety, some dogs may be sensitive to this herb. Start by giving chamomile to your dog in small amounts and consult your vet if any issues arise.
2. Valerian Cookie Calming Treats for Dogs
The anxiolytic properties of Valerian root extracts are well reported in animal models and humans, making it a potential alternative to anxiolytic drugs. Homemade valerian cookies are an excellent option for calming dogs with separation anxiety.
- 1 cup chicken stock
- 1½ teaspoons dried valerian root
- 1½ cups brown rice flour
- 2 eggs
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Line the baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a large bowl, add all ingredients and whisk until thoroughly combined.
- Lightly dust your working surface with flour. Roll out the dough to ¼ inches in thickness.
- Cut out shapes from the flattened dough using your chosen cookie cutter.
- Place them on the lined baking sheet. Bake for 13 to 20 minutes until golden brown.
- Take out the valerian cookie calming treats for dogs from the oven. Allow them to cool on a wire rack.
- Serve the calming cookies for dogs to your canine friend.
- Valerian root hinders nerve transmissions of neurons, which provides a calming effect on dogs experiencing stress and anxiety.
3. Hemp Truffle Calming Treats for Dogs
- Decarbing the hemp flower
Decarbing is a crucial step before making the treats as it activates the cannabinoids of the hemp buds.
- Preheat the oven to 220 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Use a mortar and pestle to grind the hemp flower.
- Thinly spread the ground hemp flower on a lined baking sheet.
- Put the baking sheet on the oven’s middle rack and bake for 30 minutes.
- Take the hem flower out of the oven and allow it to cool down to room temperature.
- Creating the calming dog treats
- Place the strawberries in a food processor or blender and then purée them.
- In a large mixing bowl, pour in the ground hemp flower, puréed strawberries, milk, and coconut flour. Mix until well incorporated.
- Gradually pour the coconut oil into the mixture. Combine properly until the dough is sticky enough to form balls.
- Roll the dough into small 1-inch hemp truffle balls.
- Transfer the dog-calming chews to a lined baking sheet and chill in the fridge for 1 to 2 hours.
- Serve the hemp calming treats for dogs to your pooch. Place leftover calming sweets in a ziplock bag and store them in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
- Dried hemp flower is rich in cannabinoids and terpenes, which aid in lessening separation anxiety and other stress-induced problems in canines.
4. Frozen Ginkgo Biloba Calming Treats for Dogs
Ginkgo biloba has stress-alleviating properties that have been observed in animal models and humans. Ginkgo biloba is observed to reduce age-related canine behavioral issues in canines such as anxiety, depression, and irregular sleep patterns.
- 2 tablespoons chopped dried or fresh ginkgo biloba leaves.
- 2 cups distilled water.
- In a saucepan, bring water to a boil, then turn off the heat.
- Add the ginkgo biloba leaves and let them steep for 10 minutes.
- Use a colander to separate the tea from the leaves.
- Allow the liquid to cool down.
- Pour the liquid into an ice cube tray and freeze for 3-4 hours to create frozen calming dog treats.
- Ginkgo biloba helps improve blood flow and is believed to mimic the ability of monoamine oxidase inhibitors, which promote a better mood.
- Anecdotal evidence suggests that ginkgo biloba can aid in mitigating cognitive dysfunction, such as short-term memory loss in elderly dogs.
- Use ginkgo biloba on dogs with bleeding disorders with caution because it has blood-thinning abilities.
- Avoid administering ginkgo biloba together with blood thinners and non-steroidal medications. Since the herb can potentially interact with other drugs, discuss this with your veterinarian if you own a medicated dog.
- Do not use the herb on pregnant or lactating dogs, as there is a lack of documentation of its safety for these canines.
Most-Asked Questions About Calming Dog Treats
1. Are calming treats good for dogs?
Yes, calming treats are good for dogs, but they work best on canines with mild anxiety.
Dog owners should beware that calming products cannot cure canine behavioral issues like separation anxiety on their own.
If your dog has severe anxiety symptoms, work with a canine behaviorist to resolve the problem.
2. What is the most effective calming treat for dogs?
Every dog-calming treat works differently for each dog. So what works for your pooch might not have the same effect on other canines.
Finding the best calming aid for your furry pal would take some trial and error.
3. How to make calming treats for dogs?
Making calming treats for dogs is an easy process. Dog owners only need to combine the ingredients properly and shape the mixture into their ideal form.
Dog-calming treats in the form of gummies and truffles are then placed in the freezer to chill before serving.
4. Can you give your dog calming treats every day?
Calming treats for dogs can be given daily but should be used in moderation and only when necessary. Herbs used in dog calming treats are not meant to be consumed daily but can be added to a dog’s diet to relieve stress and anxiety in specific situations.
It’s important to consult with a veterinarian before giving any new supplements or treats to your dog on a regular basis.
5. Do dog-calming treats have potential side effects?
Dogs with sensitive stomachs might experience mild diarrhea after ingesting calming treats. However, this condition often resolves on its own.
Minor overdose may lead pooches to become sleepier and more lethargic. In most cases, vet intervention is unnecessary since these symptoms gradually disappear.
However, severe overdose can trigger alarming side effects such as vomiting, low body temperature, and lack of coordination. Be sure to send your dog to the vet if he exhibits these symptoms.
6. How long do dog-calming treats take to work?
Administer calming treats for dogs 40 minutes before any stressful situation, giving the active ingredients more time to work.
In general, calming dog treats can retain their effectiveness for up to 8 hours.
Calming dog treats made with natural herbs can soothe mild to moderate anxiety. But be careful not to overfeed your furry friend, as large doses can cause sedation.
One of the common causes of stress in dogs is the unpleasant symptoms of travel sickness during car rides. Make trips a comfortable experience for your pup by trying out these 3 Natural Herb Remedies to Relieve Travel Sickness in Dogs.