32 Genius things that'll get your dog to chill out

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ByChristina X. Wood
Originally Published: 

Ah, dogs. They’re our furry best pals, and, much like our human best pals, they can sometimes be a little high-strung, anxious and uptight, or regularly chew through the furniture (OK, that last one probably doesn’t apply to most people friends). Luckily, there are more wildly clever things you can buy for dogs available to us now than at any time in history. They invite our pets to enter the chill zone, and they’re downright genius.

After all, we want our fur children to be as comfortable and well-adjusted as possible — which helps us be as comfortable and well-adjusted as possible. Whether it’s a classic Thundershirt to help soothe pups during loud noises and storms, or a novel lickmat that makes for breezier bathtime, there are brilliant creations to help poochie be their most zenlike self.

Heck, they can even get on the hemp and CBD train with tasty treats that bring on the calm and even sleepiness, should the moment call for it. There’s a soothing and de-stressing lavender and chamomile shampoo and conditioner for peaceful baths, or a handy-dandy travel water and food-carrying bottle for ultimate comfort when on the go.

Basically, if there’s an issue that any canine (and their person) has experienced, chances are some brilliant, dog-focused genius has developed an item to mitigate it. So, for the chillest of homes and happiest of pups, scroll on and find just the ones for you and your buddy.


The dog jacket that calms dogs so they can sleep through thunder

When your pup starts panting and pacing, the poor thing is showing signs of stress. You can’t use breathing exercises to calm a dog but you can put the Thundershirt on. It’s designed to fit snugly, giving an all-over calming feeling of pressure that has been shown to alleviate canine anxiety. Over 21,000 five-star reviewers say it works. “I applied Thundershirt one hour before a storm and [my dog] laid down and slept...in a coma!” reports one happy reviewer.


This treat mat that occupies lick-loving dogs for ages

These silicone mats are a genius way to use food to calm, train, and reward your pup. Smash something tasty — peanut butter, wet food, something your dog loves — into the nooks and crannies of this food-grade rubber mat and let them lick it off. The act of licking is calming for dogs and this mat prolongs the pleasure of treats while encouraging the licks, so it's a great way to crate train, calm a pup, or deliver medications.


A long-lasting wishbone chew toy that’s easy to hold

Dogs don’t have opposable thumbs — thankfully, really — so holding on to a chew toy is a challenge for them. This wishbone-shaped chewie is designed to make it easy for paws to grasp. It is also infused, throughout, with flavor — real bacon bits, chicken, or peanut — so the pups really love it. You and your budget will like it, too, because it lasts a super long time and comes in a size to suit every breed.


This super tough toy you can hide treats in

When you leave your dog home alone, indoors or out, make sure they have something to keep them busy so they don’t turn to digging up the yard or eating the couch when they get bored. The tough, chewable Kong is a wildly popular solution for this. Stuff it with treats and it will offer hours of engaging play to keep your pet occupied. It’s also a great throw toy. Well over 31,000 people give it a perfect five stars.


A super-soft and soothing pet bed

The donut shape of this ultra-soft pet bed creates a nest-like hole that dogs and cats can crawl into for comfort and a feeling of safety. The amazingly soft fabric has a high loft that pets can sink into and relax. And the colors look terrific in your home. Reviewers — and their pets — give it almost 41,000 five-star reviews (complete with sleeping pet pics.)


This homeopathic calming tincture for pets

Just put a few drops of this calming herbal tincture into your pet’s food before you travel, go to the vet, or engage in any activity they find stressful. It’s loaded with flower essences that won’t cause drowsiness or sedation, but that will create a sense of calm. It’s completely safe and reviewers tell some dramatic tales of success such as, “The change in [my dog’s] behavior and overall mood has been INCREDIBLE! I am STUNNED.” The only drawback is wishing they got it sooner.


The water bottle with a built-in bowl and treat cup

When you hit the road — or even just the dog park — bring everything your canine companion needs to hydrate and snack in this travel water bottle for dogs. The water feeds from the bottle to the bowl-shaped sipping compartment so that even dogs who can’t master drinking from a bottle can hydrate. A separate container screwed onto the body of the bottle holds treats or the pup’s next meal.


This bowl that makes pets eat more slowly

Got a dog that becomes a wolf at mealtime? This slow feeder bowl has a maze for the kibble to hide in that slows that impulse down and promotes eating at a healthier speed, which can put an end to vomiting and choking from gulping down. It has a wide bottom and comes with optional grippers to hold it to the floor so it won’t spill. It works for cats, too.


A nap blanket with a thermal inner liner so pups stay warm

Not only is this delicious pet blanket amazingly soft and fuzzy —with faux fur on one side and cozy fleece on the other — but it also has a reflective mylar inner lining so that your dog’s own body heat will create a safe, warm place to sleep. It’s terrific protection for your furniture, too, since your pup will sleep on this machine-washable blanket with a waterproof inner lining instead of directly on your difficult-to-clean upholstery.


This day pack so your dog can have a job (and even help carry your stuff)

Some dogs need to feel occupied in order to be calm, and they can do that while conveniently carrying a few treats, some water, and a collection of tennis balls with this doggy day pack. The mesh body is cool and breathable and the two pockets — one on each side — are roomy, expandable, and secure. The straps and clasps make it easy to put on and a handle on the top gives you a place to grab if a hazard threatens when you’re off-leashing it.


A spray that calms nerves while healing skin and fur

Your dog’s sense of smell is thousands of times more acute than yours so it makes sense that the relaxing scent of lavender, so calming to humans, would work to calm canine anxiety. This de-stress spray is a simple way to surround them with that smell while applying vitamin B5, oat extract, lanolin, vitamin E oil, oats, and chamomile to their coat. Just spray it on and brush or massage it in. It’s good for skin, fur, and mood.


The calming CBD treats that help a dog sleep

When your dog gets very wound up, this maximum-strength hemp formula will chill them right out. The soft, tasty chews are loaded with hemp as well as chamomile, valerian root, ginger, melatonin, and suntheanine to tackle everything from joint pain to anxiety to stomach issues so your dog can sleep. And there is nothing more relaxing to a pet owner than a sleeping dog.


These five inviting squirrels that live in a tree

Fill the tree trunk with the squeaky squirrel toys and give the whole project to your dog. It leads to hours of fun spent pulling the squirrels out of the tree trunk, playing with the squirrels, and tossing the tree around. Finding the squirrels in the trunk seems to bring out the apex predator in some dogs and a maternal instinct in others. Either way, almost 34,000 people say their dogs love this toy and give it five stars.


The long-lasting pet chews that are made from yak milk

These simple pet chews are not loaded with chemicals and junk that’s bad for your dog’s health — but dogs love them anyway, and spend a long time chewing them. They are made from pasture-raised yak and cow's milk, salt, and lime juice so you don’t have to worry that your dog is eating plastic or other non-digestible ingredients.


A toy that’s designed so dogs can pull it apart

This soft toy is designed as a challenge for your dog, with sensory fun along the way. The rings can be removed but it’s not easy — with only teeth and paws to work with — and they make crinkle noises and squeaks along the way. All parts of the plush toy are safe for dogs to chew and are super durable so they’ll last a long time. Reviewers report that these toys last longer than most and that their pups love them.


These two balls that hold treats for a long-term activity

Fill these two toys with treats and give them to your dog when you want them to leave your shoes and the furniture alone. The tantalizing smell of treats will keep their attention. The blue toy has teeth all the way around where you can embed tasty morsels and the green one has a push-through opening so you can get treats inside the ball. With the smell of a favorite snack emanating from them, these balls will be much more interesting than anything else in the house.


A brownie-like treat that calms nerves and helps dogs sleep

When there is a storm or vet visit coming up, be sure to have these calming treats on hand to feed your dog. They taste like peanut butter and are loaded with calming ingredients like valerian root, niacin, and thiamin to reduce anxiety and calm destructive behaviors and aggression caused by fear.


These deer antlers that are fun to chew & super long-lasting

These six-packs of deer antlers are harvested from wild sheds, and then cut, trimmed, sanded, and washed. They provide dogs with a challenging, durable, healthy chew that appeals to their natural canine instincts. Each one is about six inches long and they are perfect for small to mid-sized dogs who are aggressive chewers.


A rod toy that helps high-energy dogs run around (without you having to)

Cats aren’t the only ones who fall for those fishing rod toys with a mouse on the end. This is the big-dog equivalent. There is a lure on the end of a stretchy cord that’s attached to a pole. You swing the pole and your dog chases the lure so everyone gets a little movement in, even if there isn’t a huge field to run in.


The sensory vest that calms in three ways

This three-in-one calming vest takes the sensory therapy of a tight-fitting vest up a notch by adding calming sounds from a small speaker that fits into a pocket, along with calming scents emitted by scent patches that tuck into another pocket. It comes with two scents and is available in seven sizes to fit snugly on your pooch.


A hoodie that eases canine fear of loud noises

When you vacuum the house or attempt to use a blow dryer on your dog, pull this hoodie over their ears so they don’t experience the noise quite so loudly, or feel the air on their sensitive ears. The gentle pressure is calming and it also looks so fashionable. It comes in five colors and three sizes.


A booster seat for the car that keeps the pup contained

Make car rides safer for everyone and more comfortable for your dog by installing this booster seat for dogs so your canine companion is happy and contained. There is a harness to keep your dog in the carrier, and they can see out the window. No more running around the car, wreaking havoc on the interior, or distracting you from the road.


This slow feeder that hones a foraging instinct

Dogs are natural foragers, following the scent of food to track it down before devouring it. When the food shows up in a bowl it can be too easy, and they often eat too fast. This slow-feeding snuffle mat encourages them to use their senses to locate the kibble within the felt shrubbery. It slows their eating pace to something healthier, while also being a fun activity.


This soft toy with a heartbeat for dogs with separation issues

Dogs are pack animals, so when you leave a puppy alone, it’s often stressful for them. This soft, plush toy has a beating heart within to keep your lonely pup company while you’re gone. The heart beats for over six hours, calming and comforting your dog, so you can go to work or school. It’s terrific for puppies, any dog with separation anxiety, and older dogs who require lots of attention.


A scented elephant toy that will survive being bitten, shaken, and chomped

This tough and durable stuffed elephant just might tromp its way to being your dog’s favorite toy. Not only will it survive the killer jaws of death your dog attacks it with, but it will satisfy those urges by making a crinkle sound when chomped on, squeaking when bitten, and rattling when shaken. When shaken, it exudes a lavender scent to calm your little monster.


These durable beefy chews that dogs love so much

When you want a chew that will occupy your dog’s full attention, these high-protein, beef bully sticks will do it. The irresistible smell of beef combined with an extremely satisfying chewing experience will have your dog’s full attention focused on them till they are gone. They are healthy, easy to digest, and good for your dog’s teeth, too.


The quick wipes that were designed for dog paws and noses

Giving a dog a bath is a big undertaking that’s just not always possible. But these durable dog wipes will take care of dirty paws, a nose that’s been somewhere it shouldn’t, and problems in the posterior region that require immediate cleanup. They are degradable, hypoallergenic, and come unscented or with a lavender essence. Over 20,000 people give them five paws up — er, stars.


A shampoo that makes bath time relaxing

When it’s time for a bath, make it a relaxing one with this lavender and chamomile pet shampoo that’s loaded with oatmeal to cure hot spots, irritation, and chew sites. The scents come entirely from essential oils and there are no fragrances, bleach, or other irritants to dry skin or set off allergies.


This scrub brush for easily lathering up a furry friend

Use this brush for a pleasant therapeutic massage — wet or dry — that relaxes dogs, cleans them, and stimulates their skin. The naturally sourced rubber nubs help to lather pet shampoos while scrubbing off the dirt, so you don’t have to use as much product. And dogs love it. “The Bodhi dog brush made bath time so, so much easier,” says one reviewer. “The dogs liked the soft prongs and stayed still like they were getting the best massage ever!” Can I get one?


A balm that heals and soothes sore paw pads

When a dog’s paw pads are dry, cracked, or sore, walking hurts. So whether your pup has been running on pavement, walking in the snow or salt, or you just want to prevent issues, this balm is an easy solution. It’s loaded with healing shea butter, jojoba oil, beeswax, hemp seed oil, and calendula extract to heal and soothe tender pads and is precisely the right texture for applying to a pup’s paws.


A box of chill pills for when your pet is upset

These chill pills for pups are designed to calm their nerves before thunder, fireworks, vet visits, or anything that stresses them out. The chews are tasty and their packed with ingredients like chamomile, ginger, L-Tryptophan, melatonin, passionflower, and thiamine that will help calm those tense and frazzled canine nerves.


This occupying lick mat that sticks to tub tile, the floor, or the crate

When your dog absolutely refuses to get into the bath, stick this licky mat to the wall and fill it with peanut butter or a favorite treat. If your dog is anxious in the car, stick it to the window so they can lick while they ride. Not only is the treat compelling, but the act of licking is both calming and distracting so you can wash doggie or drive the car in peace. The suction cup on the back and nubby surface that makes treats hard to lick off makes this slow-treater a versatile solution to many issues.