Labradors are among one of the most popular breeds of dogs in America. If you have ever met one, it’s not difficult to see why! They’re friendly, active, and outgoing, and it’s hard to find a more loyal family pet.
Once upon a time in their early days as a breed, Labs were fishermen’s helpers and did jobs like hauling nets, fetching ropes, and retrieving fish from the cold North Atlantic. Nowadays, they’re widely used in hunting, faithfully roaming the fields with their masters in the chilly early morning throughout the long day. Both of these jobs required breeding a dog who is very strong and enduring; with this potential unused, it can translate to lots of active energy or even anxiety in your Lab. If you’re at your wit’s end and wondering to yourself, “How can I calm my Labrador?”, there’s great news for you. There are tons of ways that you can help calm her daily.
What are the Best Calming Products for Labradors?
- Best Overall: Organic Hemp Oil by The Anxious Pet
- Best Calming Vest: Anxiety & Calming Aid for Dogs by ThunderShirt
- Best Calming Bed: Best Friends by Sheri, Original Calming Shag Vegan
- Best Calming Treats: CBD Infused Wellness Dog Bites by Austin and Kat
- Hemp Calming Anxiety & Hyperactivity Soft Chews Dog Supplement by PetHonesty
- Hemp Elements Calming Nutrastix Behavior Dog Supplement by Zesty Paws
- Calming Care Probiotic Dog Supplement by Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets
- Hemp Calm Down with Hemp Seed by Healthy Solutions for Pets
- Calm Stress & Anxiety Relief Melatonin Dog Supplement by Waggedy
- Calm, Full Spectrum Hemp Extract by CBD Dog Health
- CBD Dog Treats + Stress & Anxiety Relief by Holistapet
- Full Spectrum CBD Supplements by Canna-Pet
- Pet CBD Oil by Pure Relief
5 Different Types of Products to help Calm a Labrador
- Calming Bites: Calming dog treats are usually shaped like cookies or soft chews. They are a versatile, handy option because they usually work in about half an hour. They are also portable, so you’re covered if you face a situation on the go. They work thanks to natural ingredients that will ease your Lab’s mind. If your dog doesn’t do well with vests or crates, calming bites are the way to go.
- CBD Oils: In a similar way to calming treats, CBD oil is a great calming option. CBD, or cannabidiol, is derived from cannabis and hemp, not marijuana, and doesn’t have psychoactive THC. It affects your dog’s nervous system by helping it produce serotonin, a natural calming hormone. If your dog is a picky eater and won’t eat her calming bites, CBD oil is handy because you can either slip it into her food or directly into her mouth to ensure she gets her dosage.
- Calming Vest: Sometimes, we all just need a hug, and that’s how calming vests work. They utilize touch therapy and deep pressure, working like swaddling on a baby. By applying consistent, light pressure to either specific parts or the entire body, it gives your dog’s body the signal to deactivate the “fight or flight” instinct and instead activates the helps your dog’s parasympathetic nervous system for a “relax” response.
- Crates: Most of us already use crates and know that they help, but maybe don’t know the reason why. In a similar way that going to your room to retreat gives you peace, a similar effect works on dogs with their crates. They get their own space to relax in and call their own, providing a sense of security. Since crates can vary so much in durability, technique, and size, you’ll want to have a good sense of your dog’s personality and needs before you pick one.
- Beds: When your dog was a newborn puppy, she was deaf and blind. It’s a scary time to be a little pup! But she found comfort in the warmth and softness of her fellow puppy siblings and her loving mama. Calming beds help replicate this feeling by being self-warming, and they soothe your dog by being super soft and nest-like in shape.
5 Key Considerations When Looking for a Product to Calm a Labrador
- Age: Your Lab will most likely be more rambunctious as a puppy or young adult, and she might outgrow this phase at some point. She also might have more separation anxiety as a baby. If you think she might outgrow this, you may not want to spend a ton of money on physical calming aids, like a crate or vest, and instead invest in edible calming aids. If you do opt for a more long-lasting physical aid, keep in mind how much your young Lab might grow.
- Size: You will likely need to know how much your dog weighs, regardless if you choose a physical or edible calming aid. Physical ones will need your dog’s dimensions to pick the right sizing. Edible ones will need her weight for the proper dosage. In either scenario, have your dog’s information up to date and current.
- Severity of the problem: If your dog has extreme hyperactivity or anxiety, some aids will do better than others. Evaluate the situation that your dog is in to cause the issue; is it a sudden occurrence, or does it happen every day at a certain time? Do you need something fast-acting, or is a couple of hours an okay window to work with? Read how quickly different aids work, understand your dog carefully and even ask your vet for her input before you decide.
- Level of activity: It doesn’t matter if your dog is dealing with anxiety or simply pent-up energy. Whatever is causing your dog to be overactive, you need to understand how she deals with the stressors. Forcing any kind of calming aid that will work against her activity level will exacerbate the problem. For instance, If she simply sits still and shakes while she’s anxious, a calming bed could be a good idea. If she jumps and barks a ton, a calming vest might be helpful. If she is a picky eater, you may want CBD oil instead of chews. Tailor the solution to your dog’s actions.
- Source of product: Before you buy any product, make sure to buy from a reliable source. One very important way to figure out whether or not you’re buying from a knock-off site is to look at the reviews. Are there a lot, or just a few? Also, check out the ingredients and how the product is produced. Take special care if you’re looking into edible calming aids, as you certainly don’t want to inadvertently feed your dog something harmful. Feel free to be very choosy!
Best Calming Products for Labradors
- Edible calming aids
- 800mg CBD oil /200mg CBD soft chews
- Dropper delivery for oil
- For use in dogs 15 pounds and over
- Daily use-approved
Best Overall – If product purity is a heavy weight on your mind for your dog, The Anxious Pet delivers. Their chews and oil are 100% free of pesticides, heavy metals, residual solvents, microbials, and other toxic substances. How do they know? They provide third-party testing to make sure. Another thing to love about them is that they include a bonus of 40 soft chews along with your hemp oil purchase. As for what’s in the help oil, it’s two ingredients: organic coconut oil and full-spectrum organic hemp oil. Not only does the hemp oil help in nervous behavior, but also inflammation and skin allergies.
One challenge with this option is that the price point is a little higher than you might be expecting to spend regularly. Additionally, there aren’t any reviews on the website as of yet. This isn’t to say that it’s not a good product, however; since it’s been formulated by a veterinarian, you know it’s here to help.
- Organic ingredients
- Bonus chews added
- Full-spectrum formula
- Third-party tested
- Zero website reviews
- Pressure therapy
- Seven sizes
- Heather gray color
- Breathable fabric
- Vet and trainer-recommended
Best Calming Vest – In dog circles everywhere, everyone has heard of Thundershirt. They have revolutionized the calming vest game with their patented design. Their vest works as a sort of gentle, constant hug with light pressure on specific points on the dog’s body. This in turn calms anxiety, fear, and over-excitement, and reduces undesirable behaviors like too much jumping, barking, or marking. This is all behavior you might see when your dog hears fireworks or thunder, or faces separation, travel, vet visits, and grooming! Thundershirt offers an option that doesn’t require medication or training, and the best part is, it’s a product that you won’t need to constantly reorder.
It’s definitely been well-used. On Chewy’s website, it has almost 700 reviews at over 4/5 stars. Not only that, but Thundershirt also surveyed owners who bought from them and discovered that it was effective in 80% of dogs. The only issue with the Thundershirt is that it takes some time to use. For your dog to get used to wearing it, Thundershirt suggests taking the time to positively associate the vest, and then gradually ease your dog into wearing it. So that means a few days of initial training at the very least. If you need a same-day fix, you might need to look elsewhere.
- One-time purchase
- Patented vest design
- Free shipping on orders over $49
- 600+ reviews
- Works for over 80% of dogs
- Only one color option
- Small learning curve
- Nest-like, round shape
- Vegan shag lining
- Polyfill filling
Best Calming Bed – Like you love to do when you’ve had a bad day, some dogs just want to crawl into bed for comfort. This Sheri bed is one of the best places for them to do it. Its donut-like shape cradles and shelters your dog, giving her a sense of security as she dozes off. Plus, it’s super soft and self-warming, so your pup can burrow, nuzzle, and cuddle it. Most cuddler beds are designed for small dogs, but Sheri helpfully provides this bed in an array of sizes, including larger ones.
Where this Sheri bed may literally let you down is in the filling. Since it has less supportive material than dense and durable memory foam, the polyester is more likely to lose its shape with normal wear and tear, especially under your Lab’s denser body. Plus, since Labs love to chew, she might see the bed as a chew toy, requiring constant supervision on your part.
- Over 1,000 4.5/5 average reviews
- Free shipping over $49
- Less durable
- Healthy ingredients
- Cookie-like treat
- Hemp-based edible aid
- Three treat sizes
- US-grown extract
Best Calming Treats – When you read the list of ingredients for these treats, you might think that they’re human treats, but save them for your dog! They are made with natural ingredients like apples, peanut butter, and coconut oil. And of course, they utilize the naturally-occurring CBD in hemp oil to help your Lab stay calm. You can expect this duration of calm to stick around between 4 and 8 hours, and kick in within 30-45 minutes.
What’s great is that you can customize the treat size purchase to your dog’s weight. There are three different sizes to choose from. Also, the pricing is great, even in the larger sizes, but if you’re hoping for even more savings, you can subscribe for 15% off. This way, you know the next time your Lab needs a dose of calm, you won’t be left in a lurch.
- Third-party lab-tested
- Subscription service savings
- Free shipping on orders over $50
- 30-day money-back guarantee
9 Other Top Rated Labrador Calming Products
Auto-ship can honestly be a lifesaver. You don’t want to open up the bottle to see only one left, right when your dog is on the cusp of a meltdown! Luckily, this PetHonesty product has a great auto-ship option that will prevent that from happening, and also save you a little extra money. You’ll get a package of 90, naturally-chicken flavored chews that calm with natural organic hemp powder, chamomile, ginger, and valerian root. They start working in 30-45 minutes, a pretty quick turnaround for chews, but of course still might take a little planning ahead. However, your Lab won’t be bogged down with drowsiness or other unpleasant side effects.
You get a two-in-one deal with these chews. Not only do the hemp, melatonin, chamomile, valerian root, and suntheanine help your dog stay on the calm side, there’s also a secret ingredient of peppermint. As she happily chews away, distracted from her cares, these chews will help freshen up her breath. If you’re ready to hit the “buy” button, you’ll be satisfied to know that they are quite inexpensive, and you can select a 12 or 25-ounce size.
If you’re skeptical about the effects of herbals on your dog, you can give this supplement a try. Instead of plant-based aid, you will receive 45 packages of powder supplements, enough for around six weeks. Inside is a strain of beneficial bacteria, BL999, which also acts to calm canines. To give them to yours, all you have to do is tear open a packet and pour it over your dog’s food for it to work. If she’s rejected chews in the past, this can be a great way to make sure she gets her calming aid. Because this product is so far outside the box, the price tag is a little higher, but 200 reviews of 4/5 stars have deemed it worthy.
Some dogs have the misfortune of having sensitive stomachs. To prevent this chew from upsetting your dog’s, there’s ginger included. This will make it easier for her to digest. The calming properties come from chamomile, thiamine, L-Tryptophan, melatonin, and hemp oil with naturally occurring CBD. After about 30 minutes, you can expect the calm to kick in, which is a great-performing window for edible chews. However, there just aren’t many reviews on the site, which is always slightly worrisome, but with very reasonable pricing, they are still worth a try.
For 60 chews with all-natural relief for your dog that won’t break your bank, there’s waggedy. They make these chews in the US and use the active ingredients of melatonin, L-Tryptophan, chamomile flower, passion-flower, and ginger. Plus, you can have them auto-shipped to your door, giving you a bit of savings and peace of mind knowing you aren’t going to run out any time soon. You’ll see the chew’s effects after 30 minutes.
Lavender oil is a secret ingredient in many calming aids for both people and animals. If you’ve ever inhaled its satisfying scent, you probably know why. The folks at CALM know this quite well, so they’ve made it a key feature of their calming treats. They utilize full-spectrum production, so these treats have both high purity and power. Inside, the CBD extract is high quality at 100% food-grade, and they make it with CO2 extraction, getting rid of the risk of any chemical solvents, like butane, going into your dog’s system. You can see it for yourself with their third-party certificates of analysis. The one downside to these treats is that there’s a rather large two-hour window, and the effects go away completely after four to six hours.
With peanut butter and apple in these treats from HolistaPet, they’ll be easy to tempt your dog with. You’ll feel good knowing that they’re non-GMO, non-gluten, and dairy-free, and so they won’t upset any sensitive systems. With the power of natural hemp seed powder, pure CBD oil, L-Theanine, and chamomile for increased alpha wave generation, you’ll have your Lab calmed in no time. HolistaPet also helps you save 10% with their subscription service.
For another powder calming aid that will get past your picky eater’s defenses, Canna-Pet has your back. Their product comes in a fine powder contained within clear, vegetarian capsules. They make them in a cGMP-compliant facility, so you can feel good about their safety and purity. You can hide the capsule in a pill pocket, but the handy alternative is to open up the capsule over her favorite food. You can get enough for a month at a time or opt for auto-delivery. It’s a favorite of many pet owners since Canna-Pet boasts over 900 reviews of this product at over 4.5/5 stars.
CBD oil is so convenient; goodbye, days of coaxing your picky dog to eat chews or her favorite food sprinkled with calming product! All you have to do is drop a dose under her tongue and calm is on the way, which is what this Pure Relief oil promises. The best part of this particular product is that it doesn’t have the usually-steep price tag most other CBD oils do. The only hitch is that there aren’t many reviews on their site, and the information provided is pretty bare-boned. You might be flying a bit in the dark, but if you are still hoping to give CBD oil a go at a great price, Pure Relief will help you out.
Frequently Asked Questions
- What is the Best Way to Calm my Labrador Puppy? Make sure that your Labrador is getting enough exercise. Keeping her properly stimulated will wear her out enough to rest after, and give your house some peace back. Remember that she is likely to be more keyed up while she’s young. In general, Labs not getting enough exercise are probably going to be hyperactive and/or destroy things to burn off their energy. Instead, take her swimming, have her work on her retrieving, or try fun canine sports like agility, obedience, tracking, and dock diving.
- Why is my Labrador so hyper? You can thank the history of the Labrador breed. They were bred to be very active dogs with tons of endurance, which was great for helping fishermen all day or hunting in the cold, but isn’t so helpful when your dog is happily tearing into household item after household item. Exercise your Lab for at least an hour a day; some may need only 45 minutes, while others can even use an hour and a half!
- At what age do Labradors start to calm down? When they are young, Labs can be barreling balls of energy, even once they are in more adult bodies. It isn’t until sometime between two and four years old that they start to settle down a bit more. Of course, it all ranges from Lab to Lab; some are on the more quiet and low-key side from early puppyhood onward, while other Labs can be full of energy even well into their old age. However, as a general rule, you’ll see mental maturation between two and four in your Lab.
According to the Labrador breed standard, “The ideal disposition is one of a kindly, outgoing, tractable nature; eager to please and non-aggressive towards man or animal,” the breed standard says. “The Labrador has much that appeals to people; his gentle ways, intelligence, and adaptability make him an ideal dog.” Basically, what makes a Lab a Lab is his wonderful personality! Even though dealing with her high level of activity can be a challenge, you love your Lab very much and want to give her the best life possible. She is an incredible companion and loving friend, the hallmark of Labs. After all, according to a noted dog judge, “If a dog does not possess true breed temperament, he is not a Labrador.”