There are countless ways for human beings to express their depressed state of mind. Sometimes they stop eating or start eating more than normal. They might withdraw from life by not participating in anything. Usually, human beings go quiet when they are depressed. The signs are too easy to read. However, signs of a depressed dog are not as easy to read or detect. However, that does not mean that the pets don’t suffer from the bouts of depression. The problem with dog depression is that – researchers don’t spend much time studying the pooches and try to find whether everything is fine with the dog’s emotional state. This is a problem. For obvious reason, dogs are more ignored than the human beings. However, there are signs which show the depressed state of the dogs.
Some of the signs are too obvious. These signs include shutting everyone out without warning, or, not eating. However, not always the depression in dogs symptoms are too obvious. The problem occurs when the signs of depression are not clear, and the pet parents don’t know what to do to get their loving pet back. The best thing to do in such a situation is to keep an eye on the behavioral changes. Some of the symptoms of dogs’ depression is mentioned below –
Signs of Dogs’ Depression
Appetite Change is the first thing you should look out for when trying to detect dog’s depression. Some dogs withdraw from food when they get sad. They stop eating and lose weight. This is something to look out for.The opposite sign could be over eating. In this case, the dogs start eating more and eventually gain weight. Over eating is the means to find respite from the depression.
Change in Sleep Pattern is another sign of depression which you need to notice. Dogs have a habit of sleeping a lot this is a known fact. But, if you find your dog asleep even after you have returned home and the pet still keeps sleeping without bothering to react much, you must be worried. This might be a sign of depression in your dog, and you must opt for dog depression treatment without making any delay.
Withdrawal from Life can be considered as a sign of depression. Sometimes dogs withdraw from life when they are depressed. They refuse to play or go to walk. They don’t even bark when sadness hits them. To cheer up the depressed dog, you would need expert’s advice.
Limp Tail can be a danger sign which you need to keep an eye on. If the tail of your dog is not dancing with delight, this can be a sign that the mood of your dog is down and you need to do something to cheer the pet up. Don’t allow the mood to settle down as sometimes it becomes difficult to cheer dogs up when they get depressed.
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Now, is this million dollar question – why depression. What causes a dog to feel depressed? There are countless reasons why a dog feels depressed, and you need to find this out if you wanna get maximum benefit from dog depression treatment.
Abuse can cause dog depression. If your dog is not cheerful and happy, you need to find out whether the previous owner had abused the dog as this leads to aggression and distrust. Dogs become depressed due to abuse from the previous owners. Dogs need to be raised in a compassionate environment. This is similar to human nature; abuse leads to a psychological problem which might cause depression.
Death can cause a devastating effect on dogs. Like humans, dogs get depressed if its owner or a sibling dies. Because dogs get emotionally attached to people or animals around it, death or separation from someone close can play a major role in causing depression. Yes, dog depression after the death of another dog is possible, and you need to keep an eye on your dog if it has encountered death recently.
Depressed pet parent can cause depression in dogs as well. If you remain sad all the time, your dog would eventually pick up the energy and would get depressed like you. This is the reason, to cheer up your dog, you need to be cheerful first.
Like human beings dogs too are prone to depression when they are left alone for a long time. If your work schedule demands that you stay away from home for a long period, you should not own a dog. Leaving dogs alone at home for a long time and to all week long would surely cause dog depression.
The medical condition is a common reason why dogs get depressed sometimes. To find why your dog is depressed, you first have to find out whether your dog is suffering from any ailment or not. The withdrawal or sadness might be happening due to health reasons.
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Dog Depression Treatment
The good news is there are treatments which can cure dog’s depression. You need to opt for expert consultation if you think your dog is suffering from depression. However, one important thing you need to remember is –set aside antidepressant pills as a last resort. Don’t just allow anyone to feed your dog these pills. There are countless ways you can try to bring back the loving and cheerful pet that kept you smiling.
Extra attention works like wonder. Who does not want to be showered with attention? Your dog too would appreciate the attention that you shower upon it. Along with attention offer treats to cheer up the pet. Feed it properly and see whether the food is making the dog happy or not. Active dogs are happy dogs, and you need to make your dog active. Take it out for regular runs or walks. This will surely make the pet happy. Socialize more with your dog. If possible take your dog out to the places where other dogs are available. Once the dog starts making friends, it would shake off the layer of depression.