Does your dog dance, prance and do backflips? Chances are he's a showoff and you are one proud dog owner. Some dogs love to ham it up. But when it's nonstop, you and your hyper dog may need a little R&R. Savory calming treats may help chill him out.
Herbs to Help Calm an Overactive Dog
Creatas Images/Creatas/Getty Images
Herbs are packed with vitamins, minerals, protein, carbohydrates and fat; they play a key role in your dog's overall well-being and nutrition. Herbs known for their calming properties include valerian, lemon balm, Roman chamomile, lavender, oat and skullcap.
You can easily incorporate herbs into your dog's diet by whipping up a batch of tasty homemade cookies. One way to a dog's heart is through the stomach, so these calming treats are bound to get rave reviews.
Recipe for Calming Chamomile Crunchies
Calming Chamomile Crunchies, with their zap of Roman chamomile, is a ter-ruff-ic treat to help your dog chill out. Made with organic ingredients and wheat, they're gluten-free -- and they rate four paws up.
To prepare, preheat an oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Combine 1/2 cup each of oat flour and brown rice flour, 2 teaspoons of mint, 1 tablespoon of parsley and 1 tablespoon of dried Roman chamomile. Add 3 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil and 1 cup of water a little at a time to make a smooth dough. Roll the dough in 1/2-inch balls and place them on a greased cookie sheet. Bake for about 25 minutes. Let the cookies cool on a wire rack and store them in an airtight tin for up to four weeks.
Peanutty Oatmeal, Carob Chip & Lavender Tailwaggers
Rich and flavorful, Peanutty Oatmeal, Carob Chip & Lavender Tailwaggers are natural, preservative-free treats for occasions when your dog would love to settle down but just can't seem to relax. These crunchy cookies will have your dog curling up on the sofa with a smile on her face. Packed with doggy comfort foods such as carob and oats; they are also wheat-, soy- and gluten-free.
How to Prepare and Bake Tailwaggers
To prepare, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Combine 1 and a half cups each of oat flour and brown rice flour with 1 teaspoon of baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda, 2 cups of old-fashioned rolled oats, 1 cup of unsalted peanuts, 1 tablespoon of ground flaxseeds, 1 tablespoon of oat bran, 1/2 cup of carob chips, 1/4 cup of extra-virgin olive oil, 3/4 cup of natural peanut butter, 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract, 1/2 cup of raw wildflower honey and 2 tablespoons of fresh organic lavender. Stir until it's doughy, then form it into 1-inch balls. Place the balls on a cookie sheet and flatten them with your hand. Bake about 20 minutes or until the edges are golden brown. Let them cool completely. Store at room temperature in a loosely covered container.
Tips and Recommendations
While calming treats may have a positive effect on your dog, serious hyperactivity and anxiety reflect a medical problem. Seek veterinary advice to rule out issues and arrange treatment. Some dog breeds are naturally more active than others, but with adequate exercise and stimulation, every dog naturally achieves healthy energy levels. Calming herbs can be a regular part of a healthy dog's diet, as can introducing a variety of other herbs, from doggy-breath-busting parsley to the natural antibiotic rosemary. It is prudent to consult with your veterinarian for recommendations whenever introducing a new element into the diet.
- "Pupcakes"; Stepanie Mehanna; 2007
- "Organic Dog Biscuit Cookbook"; Jessica Disbrow Talley and Eric Talley; 2008
- "Dr. Pitcairn's Complete Guide to Natural Health for Dogs & Cats; Richard H. Pitcairn, D.V.M, PhD and Susan Hubble Pitcairn; 2005
- "Holistic Guide for a Healthy Dog"; Wendy Volhard and Kerry Brown, D.V.M.
Based in Ontario, Susan Dorling has written professionally since 2000, with hundreds of articles published in a variety of popular online venues. Writing on a diverse range of topics, she reflects her passion for business, interior design, home decorating, style, fashion and pets.