Some folks scoff when they hear the term dog depression, but it is a real and valid problem for dogs, and there are easy enough steps to take to ensure it doesn’t happen to your dog. With this article, we hope to shine a light on the problem, offer you a few signs to tell if your dog might be depressed, and how to prevent depression in dogs.
When looking for signs of depression in your dog, note changes that are similar to how a human gets depressed. The dog will become lethargic, less active, and less interested in the things it used to love doing. The dog will be less likely to eat or drink, and will need encouragement to do so. Even their sleeping habits can become erratic, and switch from the patterns you are used to. In extreme cases, the dog can also get become far less social, retreating into darker, quieter places where they feel safe. Those symptoms can also be spotted in dogs with arthritis and other health problems, too, so it is important to note if there are any precursors to the dogs depression.
Did something happen to the dog? Have you relocated, and is the dog trying to adjust? Did the dog lose a playmate and is taking it particularly hard (which can often be the case)? Even something as simple as bringing a new pet in the home can upset or depress your dog.
So if you think your dog is depressed, what steps can you take to help it? A huge helping hand in any situation with animals is keeping them active. Even if you can’t manage to walk or exercise the dog yourself due to limitations on your part, there are products you can purchase to ensure the dog is staying physical, fit, and happy. Another (simple) step is a lot of TLC. Make sure you take time every day to show the dog you love it and get that tail wagging, because it benefits both of you. Even the worst cases of dog depression will only last a few months if you make sure you are doing your part to prevent it.
In most cases, taking these simple steps will ensure that your dog stays healthy and happy, and by your side, tail wagging, for many years to come.