Pawscessories is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no cost to you.
Sometimes after a long day of work you want to come home, sit on the couch, relax and watch your favorite show.
But there they are, even after being walked for 30-45 minutes your pup still isn’t able to calm down.
They cling to you like glue and won’t leave your side while constantly bugging you to play or simply pay attention to them.
Not to mention how hyper they get whenever guests come over or when they’re around other dogs. So how do you calm down a hyper dog? Can you calm a high energy dog or is it just in their nature?
The good news is you can. All dogs, no matter how hyper, can be trained to be obedient, calm and well behaved.
All you need are the right strategies.
In this post you’ll discover:
- 7 ways to calm down a hyper dog (#3 is the most effective)
- How to identify why your dog is so wild and energetic
- Tips to help calm a hyper dog in any environment (without having to raise your voice or be physical)
- And much more
Let’s dive in.
Table of Contents
What Causes A Dog To Be So Hyper?
In order to give you strategies to help calm down a hyper dog you first need to know what causes hyperactivity in dogs.
There are many different things that can cause a dog to become hyperactive. It could be from simple things like not getting enough exercise or not enough mental stimulation.
However, there are some health conditions that could cause a dog to become hyperactive as well. So if your dog is hyperactive and you can’t seem to figure out why, it’s always best to consult with a vet.
Here are some big factors that play a role in a dogs energy level:
Certain dog breeds are going to have a higher level of energy. Working dog breeds are an example of dogs that usually have more energy.
These breeds were sepcifically bred to have higher levels of energy. Some examples of these dogs include:
- German Shepehrds
- Australian Shepherd
- Border Collie
- Labrador Retriever
A dog’s age can also play a role in how much energy they have. Puppies and young dogs tend to have more energy than older dogs.
Dogs that don’t get enough exercise are more prone to being hyperactive. A simple walk around the block isn’t going to cut it, especially for certain dog breeds.
You should be exercising your dog for at least 30 minutes a day, but some dogs may need even more than that. So make sure to know your dog breed and what they require.
Mental stimulation is just as important as physcial stimulation, if not more. So if your dog isn’t getting enough mental exercise, they may become hyperactive.
The type of food you’re feeding your dog can also play a role in how much energy they have. Dogs that are fed a high quality diet tend to have more stable energy levels throughout the day.
On the other hand, dogs that are fed a lower quality diet may have spikes and dips in their energy levels which can lead to them being more hyperactive.
Dogs that haven’t had proper obedience training are more likely to be hyperactive. This is because they haven’t learned how to properly behave and listen to commands.
Training your dog and giving them a job to do can help to calm them down and give them a sense of purpose.
Lastly, there are certain health conditions that can cause a dog to have changes in energy levels. For example, if a dog has hypothyroidism, it can lead to them being more tired and less active.
Is Your Dog Too Hyper?
So how do you know if your dog is too hyper? There is no easy answer to that question. It really depends on each individual dog.
Some dogs may be considered too hyperactive if they never seem to settle down or if they are constantly bouncing off the walls. Other dogs may be able to settle down but it takes a lot of effort and they still might have a lot of energy.
It’s important to remember that all dogs are different and what one person might consider too hyper, another person might not.
The best way to determine if your dog is too hyper is to compare them to other dogs of the same age, breed, and energy level. If you feel like your dog is significantly more hyper than other dogs, then determine if their routine is providing them with enough exercise and mental stimulation to calm them down.
A dog can be mistakenly labeled as “too hyper” when their needs are just not being met.
7 Easy Ways To Calm A Hyper Dog
Summary Of The Ways to Calm Down a Hyper Dog
Dogs have been bred to have a tremendous amounts of energy. As a result, never forget the importance of providing your dog with a purpose and ensuring that both their physical and mental requirements are met.
Here are the 5 proven ways to calm down a hyper dog:
- Don’t Reinforce Excitement
- Reinforce Calm Behavior
- Stimulate & Exercise Your Dog
- Leverage Items For Licking & Sniffing
- Check Your Own Energy
- Give Your Dog A Job/Train Them
- Rule Out Medical Issues
1) Don’t Reinforce Excitement
There’s a time and a place for your dog’s excitement.
In certain situations it’s okay and others it’s not.
The last thing you want to do is accidently reinforce their excitement in situations you’d rather them be calm.
For example, if your dog gets hyper whenever someone walks in your house, many people give a reaction.
Some positive, some negative.
Both reactions unfortunately are teaching your pup that acting hyper gets them attention.
Whether it’s positive or negative isn’t too big of a concern for them.
Although you probably love greeting your dog and seeing them excited, it’s moments like these where you can look to control their level of excitement.
They can still be excited while remaining calm.
And that’s the goal.
So next time your dog gets overly hyper, do your best not to accidently reinforce the behavior by ‘rewarding’ them.
Instead, ignore them until they’re calm.
Once they’re no longer acting hyper you can give them all the love and attention you want.
This’ll help incentivize them to be calm, rather than hyper.
2) Reinforce Calm Behavior
As mentioned in the previous section you want to avoid reinforcing your dog’s high excitement in situations where it’s not okay.
Instead we want to reinforce calm behavior.
This is simply done by only looking to give your dog rewards and your attention when they are in a calm, submissive state.
Depending on the motivations of your dog, when your dog is calm, reward their behavior with something they love.
This can be treats, toys, playing with you, etc. Add in a command like “calm down” anytime they are over excited, when they calm down, reward them.
This will train your dog to calm down on command!
When you combine ignoring excited behavior while rewarding calmness, your dog will naturally move into calmer states instinctively.
If you think you need specialized help calming your dog, check out our post on the best online dog training programs.
3) Stimulate & Exercise Your Dog
It’s no secret that when a dog is really tired and sleepy they are usually better behaved.
So, by that logic to help calm down a hyperactive dog all you have to do is wear them out.
This allows them to burn off that extra energy.
However, the type of exercise these hyperactive dogs need is not as simple as letting them out in the yard to pee.
In fact, this can actually make things worse because the activity can leave them more excited when it’s over, not less.
It’s the same for when you take your dog for a walk. Simply taking them around the block to potty then going home is not the purpose of the walk.
It’s to exercise them, and help them stay connected to their primal instincts while draining their energy.
What you can also do to exercise your dog is get them in an open field or in your backyard for a game of fetch.
Fetch is one of the best ways to burn excess energy and faster than anything else.
30 minutes of fetch where your dog can run around at full speed can really help calm them down.
Lastly, if you’ve been taking your dog for walks, playing games of fetch and tug of war, and they still seem hyper, try mind stimulating games/toys.
I created a list of the best mind stimulating toys that can help with this. Puzzle toys are great for helping burn a dog’s energy.
4) Leverage Items For Licking & Sniffing
Your dog’s sense of smell is much stronger than our human sense of smell.
It’s the primary way they explore the environment. Sniffing can help your dog reduce anxiety, stress, and focus their energy into a calm behavior.
Licking does something similar but using the senses on their tongue.
Licking releases endorphins and serotonin, which regulate anxiety and help your dog feel calm and less anxious.
Both licking and sniffing can help calm down a hyperactive dog and stimulate their mind.
This can burn off some of that excess energy if walking and exercising them doesn’t fully do the trick.
5) Check Your Own Energy
Dogs are experts in body language and picking up on visual cues. Thus, allowing them to predict and respond to our mood shifts.
This could be causing your dog’s heightened energy.
Even little subtle changes to your mood a dog can pick up on. In fact, some dogs can actually sense the change in your cells.
This is how some service dogs will be able to detect seizures before they happen, or even sniff out cancer cells.
So whether you are happy, sad, frustrated, or angry they know and even before you have fully realized.
Next time your dog is overly hyper, think about how you are feeling at that moment.
When you are stressed your heart rate may increase, levels of perspiration increase, and all of these things your dog can pick up on.
Related Reading: 7 Unexplainable Things Dogs Sense Before They Happen
6) Give Your Dog A Job Or Train Them
Having something your dog can focus on will help with your dog’s level of excitement.
Dogs actually love to work, and when given the chance it can help tire them out and calm them down.
Some dogs just want to feel like they are contributing to the pack. So by giving your dog a job you are removing the hyperactive behavior and redirecting their energy elsewhere.
Giving them a job can be as simple as training them. The tasks you are asking them to do is the “job”.
You can even train your dog to play certain games like hide and seek or even train them to fetch you the remote!
Another example would be giving your dog a backpack to wear with a little extra weight. You put this on them during your next walk.
This will force your dog to focus on carrying instead of getting overly excited by other dogs, squirrels, and things happening around.
It will also burn more energy due to the extra weight!
7) Rule Out Medical Issues
It’s usually not very obvious when your dog is in pain or discomfort, some dogs can hide it pretty well.
If your dog is hyperactive even after strenuous activity and mental stimulation, make sure to rule out any medical issues.
Dogs can become hyperactive due to medical issues.
If you have a hunch that your dog may be hyperactive when they should not bem, talk with a vet to rule out any health related problems.
Nothing brings peace of mind quite like speaking with a vet, you can click here to chat with a vet online right now.