!Header Content 1

Armitage Animal Clinic

Providing excellence in health care…for your pets!

Call us today! 905 836-4001
Call us today! 905-836-4001
Fetch an Appointment

18025 Yonge St, Unit 6
Newmarket, ON L3Y 8C9

Caring For A Fearful Dog

March 1 2023

Do you have a timid pooch? Just like people, dogs all have their own personalities. Some are fearless and friendly, while others are shy and jittery. A vet discusses caring for a nervous pooch in this article from Armitage Animal Clinic, your Newmarket, ON veterinary hospital.


Dogs can be anxious for many reasons. In some cases, lack of socialization is to blame. Fido may also be traumatized by negative experiences, medical issues, major changes, or phobias. If you aren’t sure what is causing your pup’s nervousness, consult a dog behaviorist.


There’s nothing wrong with comforting your canine buddy, especially if he’s still getting settled in with you. Just don’t go overboard: otherwise, you may inadvertently reward him for acting scared.

Offer A Safe Environment

Everyone needs a place they can go to when they just want to retreat and feel comfortable. Make sure your furry friend has a safe space, such as a comfy crate or corner!


Making sure Fido is getting enough exercise is also important. Your canine pal will be much calmer after he’s burned off that nervous energy!


Training can be a wonderful confidence booster for dogs. Mastering a new command can help Fido build self-esteem, just as scoring a goal can boost a child’s confidence.


There are now many products aimed at calming nervous pups. Weighted shirts, calming pheromones, and even soothing music may all be helpful. Ask your vet for recommendations. 

Positive Reinforcement

Dogs have limited ways to express their angst, and sometimes act up to release their frustration. Don’t punish Fido for mishaps: that will only make him more fearful. Ignore bad behavior, and focus on rewarding him for being good.


It may help to get Fido accustomed to new places and faces. For instance, if your pooch is afraid of busy places, you can start by taking him to a quiet corner of a park, or meeting a friend with a friendly, well-behaved pooch for walks and play dates. Just don’t push it: if you overwhelm Fido, you may make his anxiety worse.

Get Professional Help

Don’t be afraid to ask your vet or a pet behaviorist for specific advice about your scaredy-dog’s care or behavior. That’s why we’re here! 

Contact us, your Armitage Animal Clinic, your Newmarket, ON veterinary hospital, for all your dog’s veterinary care needs. We’re here to help!