Why Is My Dog Hyper All of the Time?
If you are dealing with a dog that seems hyperactive and has the endurance of the Energizer Bunny, you are not alone. As much as you love your pet, it can be incredibly frustrating to deal with a dog that has high energy. Dogs are inherently active animals; however, there are circumstances and even biological factors that can result in a pup that is more active than average. Puppies, for instance, always tend to have a ton of energy, and there are other factors such as breed, and environment that can affect their energy levels as well. If the age or breed of your dog is the reason, it might take a little extra time and care to train your dog to calm down. If their environment is not stimulating enough and is the cause, you might need to make some changes like enrolling them in doggy daycare or fitting in some more play and exercise time.
Effective Ways to Manage High-Energy Dogs
If you are struggling with a restless, high-energy dog, there are a few relatively simple things you can do to help. Depending on the age of the dog and the breed, it could take a little more time and effort for the training to sink in, but if you keep at it, your dog should eventually learn and adapt.
Give Your Dog More Physical Stimulation
We’ll start with an easy one. If your dog is a puppy or is a naturally high-energy breed, they may just need some added activity to help calm them down. A dog that is stuck inside all day might also be acting out because they need more stimulation to combat boredom. Of course, this will require a little more commitment on your part, merely letting them stay out in the yard a little longer likely won’t do the trick. Plan to carve some time out every single day for some physical activity that is more than just extra time in the back yard. You could go for a walk or a run with them before or after work, or take them to a dog park to run around for an hour or more.
Mentally Stimulate Your Dog
Next to having sufficient physical activity, dogs also need mental stimulation to keep them happy and healthy. Dogs that do not receive enough mental stimulation from playtime will often act out. Chewing on a bone or a toy by themselves throughout the day doesn’t count either. The same with physical activity, you should set aside some time each day to play and interact with your dog. This could come in the form of some training, like teaching them “sit” or “stay,” among other things, or it could involve a game of fetch or even hide-and-seek. Some companies also make puzzle toys for dogs now as well. Though at their core, your dog usually just wants more hugs, kisses, and playtime with you.
Socialize Your Dog
As much as your dog loves spending time with you, they do need to engage with other dogs. This is especially true of dogs with high-energy. Dogs play differently with other dogs than they do with you. When they play with dogs at a park or daycare, they feel a little more freedom to let loose and be themselves. Don’t take it personally. Dogs tend to hold back at home to please you and obey the rules, but that means fighting back their natural instincts. So they need some time and space where they can let loose and blow off a little steam.
Don’t Acknowledge or Reward Hyper Behavior
Dogs look to us for attention and to seek approval for their behavior. So when you give attention to your dog during one of their outbursts, it might be teaching them to think that you enjoy it or, at the least, that you approve. Next time your dog is wound up, try ignoring them. This means no eye contact and no talking or touching. It’s hard, but most dogs will learn pretty quickly that you are not acknowledging them when they act that way and should start to calm down.
Focus on Your Own Energy
The energy of people around you can significantly affect your behavior and your own mood. So it’s no surprise that a pet that is continually mirroring you and looking to you for approval will pick up on your energy as well. If you are angry, stressed, nervous, or anxious about anything, it can be reflected in your tone of voice and actions, and your dog will pick up on that. Try walking out of the room for a moment, take a few deep breaths, and then return to handle your dog when you can respond calmly and assertively.
Try Dog Daycare to Manage Hyperactive Dogs
If you have tried all of the above and are still struggling, you might want to think about trying doggy daycare. With the busy lives that we lead these days, it’s understandable if you can’t devote the time needed to train your dog and help them burn off all of that energy. Many dog daycare facilities don’t just provide a place for your dog to stay while you are at work all day, they also offer training services and can work one on one to help your dog with a variety of behavior issues. It also gives them the chance to socialize and run around with other dogs. If your dog is exceptionally high-energy, you might need to drop them off daily while you are at work. However, if they are only acting out because they feel cooped up during the day, they might only need to spend a couple of days in daycare to combat their boredom.
Safe Journey Dog Boarding
At Safe Journey Dog Boarding, we provide home-style cage-free boarding and daycare where your dog will have free reign to roam around both indoors and outside. Our team of experienced staff is there to supervise throughout the day and can work with your dog to reinforce good behavior. Give us a call or set up an appointment to tour our facility and see how Safe Journey Dog Boarding in Portland can help you and your high-energy dog today!