February 14, 2023


Dog panic attacks can be a terrifying experience for your pup, and as a pet owner, it’s important to recognize when your dog is having one. Unlike humans, dogs cannot communicate their emotions verbally, and it’s up to us to notice subtle changes in their behavior. In this blog post, we’ll uncover the 5 shockingly symptomatic indicators of dog panic attacks that every pet owner should be aware of.

Increased panting and trembling

Panting and trembling are common indicators of anxiety in dogs, and it’s no different when it comes to panic attacks. During a panic attack, a dog’s breathing can become fast and shallow, causing it to pant excessively. Additionally, the dog’s body may shake or tremble as a result of the adrenaline surge triggered by the panic attack.

Becoming Aggressive

Aggression is also a telltale sign of a panic attack in dogs. This behavior can stem from a feeling of fear and the need to protect themselves. It’s important to recognize that aggressive behavior from a usually calm and friendly dog could be a sign of a panic attack.

Barking and Howling

Barking and howling excessively is another indicator of a panic attack. These vocalizations can happen due to the dog feeling trapped or helpless, or because it wants to warn its family of something that it perceives as a threat.

Dilated pupils

Dilated pupils can be a sign of anxiety or stress in dogs, and it’s no different when it comes to panic attacks. During a panic attack, a dog’s pupils may dilate, causing its eyes to appear wider than normal.

Destroying surroundings

Dogs may turn destructive during a panic attack. They may chew on objects or furniture, scratch doors, or destroy anything else in their reach. This destructive behavior can also be a result of a feeling of helplessness or the need to escape from a perceived threat.


Recognizing the signs of panic attacks in dogs is crucial as it can help you take immediate action and provide the necessary help to your pet. If you observe any of these signs, comfort your dog and calm them down to help stop the panic attack. Encourage your dog to take deep breaths, as this can help regulate their breathing and reduce feelings of stress and anxiety. If your dog’s panic attacks persist, it’s important to consult with a veterinarian to determine the underlying cause and find appropriate treatment.


Q1: How can I help my dog prevent panic attacks?
A1: Avoid situations that trigger anxiety in your dog and make sure your pet feels safe and secure. Provide a calm and comforting environment, establish routines, and give your dog plenty of exercise and playtime to keep them active and engaged.

Q2: What medication can be given to dogs during a panic attack?
A2: Your veterinarian may prescribe medications to help calm your dog during a panic attack. These may include anti-anxiety medications and sedatives, which can be given orally or via injection.

Q3: Can panic attacks lead to long-term health problems in dogs?
A3: If left untreated, panic attacks can have long-term effects on your dog’s physical and emotional health. They can lead to increased anxiety, stress, and fearfulness, as well as behavioral problems such as aggression and destructive tendencies.

Q4: Can behavioral therapy help dogs with panic attacks?
A4: Yes, behavioral therapy can be highly effective in helping dogs with panic attacks. This therapy focuses on gradually exposing your dog to feared situations and using positive reinforcement to help them feel more comfortable and confident.

Q5: How long does a panic attack last in dogs?
A5: The duration of a panic attack can vary depending on the dog and the situation. Some panic attacks may last only a few minutes, while others may persist for hours. It’s important to observe your dog’s behavior and provide immediate support to help them overcome the panic attack.

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