Saturday, January 21, 2023

How To Help A Depressed Dog

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Dont Ignore The Symptoms

Dog depression doesnt appear out of the blue. Usually, there are some notable symptoms thatll reveal to you when your fluffy best friend is going through a tough time. They include losing attention, low activity, disinterest in their favorite food or toys as well as new sleeping or eating habits.

Depending on the dogs age and breed, they may also suffer from anxiety, anger, and aggression, which may end up in loud  and howling. Opposite of that, they may cease interacting and retrieve in themselves, sitting around quiet.

No matter which of these symptoms appear, its important not to ignore them and take action at once.

Warning Signs Of Dog Depression

And, of course, they can simply tell us that theyre not feeling good.

Our dogs dont have this option, but that doesnt mean that they cant feel sad or even While theres not as much research out there as there is for humans , all kinds of anecdotal evidence exists pointing to dog depression.

Some stories seem more obvious, such as a dog suddenly shutting down and sleeping all day in the back of a closet after another dog in the pack dies. Others arent quite as straightforward, where dog owners might notice moping or mood changes after something like a move.

So, how do you know if your pup is experiencing canine depression? Here are several common signs many of which are similar to signs of depression in people.

Dogs Offer Unconditional Love And Acceptance

As far as we know, dogs are without opinions, critiques, and verdicts. Even if you smell like their poop, they will snuggle up next to you. In a Johns Hopkins Depression & Anxiety Bulletin, Karen Swartz, MD, mentions a recent study that found that nursing home residents in St. Louis felt less lonely when they spent quiet time with a dog alone than when they visited with a dog and other residents.

The study enrolled 37 nursing home residents who scored high on a loneliness scale and were interested in receiving weekly half-hour visits from dogs. Half of the residents had quiet time alone with the pooches. The other half shared the dog with other nursing home residents. Both groups said they felt less lonely after the visit, but the decrease in loneliness was much more significant among the residents who had the dogs all to themselves. In other words, at times we prefer our four-legged friends to our mouthy pals because we can divulge our innermost thoughts and not be judged.

Do Dogs Suffer From Depression

Like humans, dogs can suffer from depression. While this common condition isnt often diagnosed in dogs, veterinarians, including behaviorists, want owners to keep a keen eye on their dogs to detect the . With the right help and treatment, you can help your furry friend through a bout of low mood.

Having learned that a dog can actually suffer depression like humans, you may want to know more. I assume you may want to know the causes of depression in these pets.

They dont have bills to pay, arent bullied, nor get cheated on by a loved one, so where is the depression coming from? What is the source?

If you have these questions on your mind, we have put together some of the causes of depression in dogs to enlighten you further.

 

Up The Entertainment Value

Dog Depression

When youre feeling down, it may help to get your endorphins up by going for a jog or a bike ride. The same holds true for your dog he just cant reach the peddles.

A Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science study found that dogs who played games with their owners were less likely to experience separation anxiety than those who didnt. The study suggests that playing with your dog may increase your bond, which can help your dog through a difficult time. Its the closest thing youre going to get to a heart-to-heart with your pooch.

 

Rock Out to Some Reggae

Good news information from the Scottish SPCA indicates that dogs may really like music! Results from a study found that dogs respond differently when exposed to certain types of music. Their responses indicate that dogs taste in music may vary as much as ours, but they seem more likely to enjoy reggae and soft rock over other types of music. So throw on some Bob Marley and spend some quality time rocking out with your pooch.

 

What Is Depression In Dogs

So why would your dog be depressed? There are all kinds of reasons ranging from on-going illness through to the loss of someone special to them. There are other reasons your dog could appear dog-tired though. Pain, infection and poisoning can all lead to languid lounging. Help get your furry friend feeling like their old self with our quick guide. Youll find out how to recognise depression in dogs, other issues to look out for, possible causes of depression and ways you can help.

Best Methods To Cheer Up A Sad Or Depressed Dog

Dr. Mark is a veterinarian. He has been working with dogs for more than 40 years.

What to do if your dog is sad or depressed.

Ryan Walton via Unsplash; Canva

Dogs can become depressed, and sometimes they do need to be cheered up. Why is a dog’s mental health important? As we have learned from human medicine, depression can have some very serious side effects. A depressed dog is more likely to contract an illness… and sometimes, a dog will not be able to “snap out of it” or recover.

Depression may be an everyday occurrencefor example, some dogs suffer from separation anxiety and get stressed and depressed every time they realize they are about to be alone. Or depression might happen only once in a while, like when something new upsets the routine . Depression might be triggered by a sad event, like the death of a playmate or even a human family member.

You can deal with all of these reasons for your dog’s unhappiness. Here’s how.

Reasons Why Dogs Can Become Depressed

The reasons behind depression in dogs are very similar to the reasons that humans become depressed. Two of the most obvious reasons are illness and grief. If your pet has been suffering from an illness, infection or disease that has impacted their life in some way then they can quite easily become depressed. Suffering because of grief doesnt always mean that either a fellow dog, pet or human has passed away. Dogs can feel grief if living situations change. If a housemate has moved out or a pet has been given to someone else then your dog could feel sad. Another reason for a dog feeling down and depressed could be if you, the owner is sick. Dogs will sense if there is something wrong with their human companions and as sad as you may be your dog will probably feel sad too. Again, like humans there is sometimes no known reason for a dog to become depressedits just one of those things.

New Ownership Or Temporary Home

There are those tragic moments when pet parents have to find new homes for their furry kids. And there are times when its only a temporary situation, like vacation. The thing is, your dog doesnt know the difference. If you leave your pooch for an hour, five days or forever, it feels the same in the moment. Your dog is likely to become withdrawn in his new environment until he gets more comfortable or you return.

 

Triggers And Treatments For Depression

If you can identify what’s triggering depression in your pet, you’ll learn to spot the symptoms earlier. This will help you figure how to help your pet feel better.

  • Environmental Changes As with people, events going on around your pet can cause him to feel depressed and anxious. Changes in a dog’s environment or living circumstances can trigger depression and anxiety. For example, dogs can experience depression and grief when another pet or human member of the household is ill or dies. This is also true when a family member moves away or changes schedules. When summer ends and your dog is suddenly alone most of the day after having children around all summer, symptoms of depression triggered by separation anxiety and loneliness can occur.
  • Weather and Seasonal Changes  Just as in humans, changes in seasons can have an impact on pet moods, as do periods of extended bad weather. For example, the moods of dogs that live in areas where hurricanes occur can be impacted by the change in atmospheric pressure. Additionally, just as the onset of winter can lead to seasonal affective disorder in some people, it can also an impact on dogs.
  • Loss of a Companion  This is probably the number one cause of depression in dogs. Dogs create strong emotional bonds with both their fellow dogs whom they see regularly as well as those who care for them. The loss of a friend or loved one is difficult on everyone and this is no different for your dog and they need ample time to grieve.

Is My Dog Depressed

Our dogs give us clues when they feel down through changes in their habits. Signs of depression in dogs include:

  • Losing interest in play
  • Hiding
  • Not getting up to greet you

Especially when these changes coincide with a change in circumstances then this may well be dog depression. Butand its a big BUT.is the dog sick rather than depressed?

DepressionOr in Pain?Take the following example:Your normally bouncy 10-year-old Labrador refuses to go for walks and instead sleeps all day. Whats going on?

  • They are depressed
  • They have arthritis
  • You cant tell and should visit the vet

The correct answer is c). Pain will cause a dog to become withdrawn, and the best person to diagnose this is the vet.

Never assume depression without first checking in with a vet. Theres a huge cross over in symptoms between a depressed dog and ill health. Only once the dog receives the all-clear from the vet, is it safe to assume a low mood.

How Can I Choose The Right Pet For Me

You may have a strong idea of the pet you want perhaps because you grew up with that animal or you might not be so sure. When youre deciding, consider:

  • how much outdoor space you have
  • how active you are
  • how much time you have to spend with your pet
  • how much money you have for vets bills, insurance, food, toys, etc. There are charities that offer low-cost vet care, but they are limited to certain areas and have financial criteria.

Animal charity PDSA has an online quiz you can take to help you choose the right pet.

Can Dogs Get Depressed How To Help Your Sad Dog

Do Dogs Get Depression? How to Help Your Sad Dog

Those who have suffered depression know how incredibly difficult life can become. Mental health is very complicated and it can take a long time to establish the most effective approach. You may have heard about anxiety and stress in dogs but what about depression? Can dogs really become depressed? The expression suffer in silence springs to mind when you think about dogs becoming depressed due to their inability to tell you how they feel. So, what can you do to help them?

What Is Making My Dog Sad

There are many causes of depression, such as:

  • A new baby in the house.
  • A new puppy. Babies and puppies get a lot of attention, and older dogs might become jealous and then depressed when they are ignored.
  • The loss of a favorite family member. Dogs do grieve, and depression is one of the few ways they can express themselves.
  • Loneliness. For example, if an owner goes back to work and leaves the dog alone all day.
  • A new house or apartment, especially when the dog loses his back yard and ability to go out and play.

Owning A Pet Is A Major Commitment

Despite all the benefits, its important to remember that a pet is not a miracle cure for mental health issues. Owning a pet is beneficial and comforting only for those who love and appreciate domestic animals and have the time and money to keep a pet happy and healthy. If youre simply not an animal person, pet ownership is not going to provide you with any health benefits or improve your life.

Even if you love animals, its important to understand everything that caring for a pet entails. Owning a pet is a major commitment that will last through the animals lifetime, perhaps 10 or 15 years in the case of dogs. And at the end of that commitment, youll face the grief and mourning that comes with losing a beloved companion.

Other drawbacks to owning a pet include:

Pets cost money. Food bills, veterinary care, licenses, grooming costs, toys, bedding, boarding fees, and other maintenance expenses can mount up. If youre unemployed or elderly, on a limited fixed income, it may be a struggle to cope with the expense of pet ownership.

Pets require time and attention. As any dog owner will tell you, theres nothing therapeutic about coming home to a dog that has been locked up in the house on his own all day. Dogs need daily exercise to stay calm and well-balanced; most other pets require at least daily care and attention.

What Are The Symptoms Of Dog Depression

Dog depression symptoms are very similar to those in people, said John Ciribassi, DVM, past president of the American Veterinary Society of Animal . Dogs will become withdrawn. They become inactive. Their eating and sleeping habits often change. They dont participate in the things they once enjoyed.

But vets warn those symptoms also can mean a dog has a medical problem, so the first course of action should always be a full checkup by a veterinarian. A pet that mopes around and no longer wants to go for walks could simply have pain from arthritis, Beaver says.

Continued

Sleeping All The Time

Dogs sleep a lot. Thats old news. But typically this happens when their owners are gone. If you leave your dog for a long time and he continues to sleep after you get home, barely reacting to your presence, something is probably wrong.

Check for physical problems first, but if you cant find anything and the symptoms continue, he may be depressed. Also know that this can work in the opposite direction, with your pup having trouble sleeping and becoming restless.

But Why Do Dogs Grieve

A dog can grief after the death of a loved one or an animal companion. Maybe a neighbors dog who he often plays with passed on. Or, maybe your last born, who was a close companion, moved to the boarding school. Since they arent humans, we may find it hard to explain this to your dog.

Losing a buddy, particularly an in-house buddy, can be a reason for your dogs depression. We may not take note of this, but pets certainly grief.

 

More Help For Your Dog

  • My Dog Is JealousDogs have emotions. Jealousy is one of the strongest, and when your dog feels it she may do all sorts of funny things. This article lists a few tips to deal with the emotion if it becomes a problem in your house.

Listening to a good book?

cc-by www.flickr.com suckamc 3047183157

This article is accurate and true to the best of the authors knowledge. It is not meant to substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, or formal and individualized advice from a veterinary medical professional. Animals exhibiting signs and symptoms of distress should be seen by a veterinarian immediately.

Bringing Back Their Appetite

Depression brings the loss of appetite with itself. Your dog may experience that, too, but that doesnt mean that you should stop giving them food. On the contrary, offer them the foods that in their mind are healthy and super delicious.

You should continue giving them the meal in the exact time even if they dont so much as touch it. Doing it all the time is the only way you can help dogs deal with depression.

Consider preparing your dog something that you know they wont resist. Think of a spectacular treat they havent tasted in a while.

But their not eating lasts for a short period of time, so you should store all the food that they dont eat and make sure to buy some of their favorites. Because eventually theyll get back on their eating routine.

How Do I Know If My Dog Has Depression

Depressed Pets: How to Help a Dog with Depression  Top ...

The symptoms of depression in dogs are similar to those experienced by people. 

Common symptoms include low activity levels, a loss in interest in the things they once enjoyed, and a change in eating and/or sleeping habits.

Some dogs may also show signs of aggression, including uncharacteristic howling or whining.

Dog Depression: Is Exercise The Best Medicine

If youve ever thought your dog was depressed, you could be right. Both dog depression and canine anxiety do exist.

And it could be caused by a number of thing.

Today I want to share with you what I use to manage depression for dogs.

I would never consider using an antidepressant drug for myself or my dogs. Instead I have a way to manage it without side effects, unless you consider happiness and contentment a bad thing.

Before we get to managing the depression, lets talk about the causes of it.

When To Call The Veterinarian

If youre concerned about your dogs mental health, you should reach out to your veterinarian to help address your dogs suffering sooner than later. Issues like compulsive behavior can also be easier to treat when theyre addressed before the behavior becomes too ingrained. Early treatment can also prevent injuries from compulsive behaviors and avoid disruption to your household, which can be stressful for everyone in the home.

Do Not Smother Your Dog

Just a friendly reminder, avoid smothering your dog if they seem down. Of course you want your dog to be happy again, but showing your dog excessive love can make them think that acting depressed is encouraged. Instead, give your dog a treat when they show a positive change in behavior. 

It might also help to set up a routine for your dog. Feed them at a certain time, take them out for a daily walk, and have cuddle sessions in between; all this can help cheer your pup up.

If in the case your dog is still sad or does not seem to be getting better, they might need some medical attention. If so, please do not hesitate to reach out to us here at Acoma Animal Clinic in Tucson. We may be able to help provide answers over the phone!

Establishing An Effective Exercise Program

As human beings, we know how important exercise is to keep our physical and mental well-being in tip-top shape. The same can be said for our pet pooches!

Doggie exercise obviously helps your pooch increase its flexibility, endurance, and overall happiness. Every time you go out for a walk, your dogs dopamine and endorphin levels rise, and its energy just seems to be out of this world. While the amount of exercise varies from breed to age, it surely helps control any behavioral issues that might stem from anxiety and depression. Here are some creative ideas of physical activities that can double as playtime:

  • Hiking: Exploration and adventure are as fun for your dog as it is for you! Introducing nature trails will help your pooch regain their sense of adventure and excitement.
  • Swimming: Some dogs love to swim, and trying a water-based activity might just be what they will need. This non-strenuous activity suits old dogs with joint problems.
  • Hide-and-seek: As a physical and mental stimulant, this game will get your dog thinking and just might be the distraction they need. This game is best for owners with limited time and can only do indoor games.

If your pup exhibits excessive amounts of licking, biting, or chewing, these may be dog stress symptoms caused by a new, unpredictable environment. Make sure you establish an efficient exercise routine so that you can build up your dogs confidence in its owner and its environment.

A Guide On How To Help A Depressed Dog

Is there anything as sad as seeing your dog in depression? Luckily, dog depression can be treated.  Heres how to help a depressed dog. And one of many ways treat your dogs depression is using CBD treats for dogs.

Having a dog can do wonders for our health. For one thing, studies have shown that they can improve heart health by lowering blood pressure and cholesterol.

On top of that, they can benefit our mental healththat is, their companionship can help ease loneliness and reduce depression.

But did you know that dogs can get depressed too? Because they can. The only thing is that they cant tell you about ityou have to be able to recognize the signs.

Want to know how to help a depressed dog? If so, youre in the right place. Keep reading to learn more!

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

This affectionate, gentle dog was a top pick for royalty back in the day. Their easygoing nature, small size, and medium energy level make them similar to the Havanese. However, the Cavalier King Charles Spaniels tend to have less hair and are slightly more active.

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are laid back with children and other dogs. They are happy to snuggle on the or go for long walks in the park.

Give Them Something To Stay Busy

You can’t always be home to play hide and seek with your dog or play fetch with them. But leaving them with something entertaining can keep them engaged until you get back and are able to play games with them. Try to opt for a toy that won’t be chewed apart quickly. “Purchase a new toy like a Kong Toy or Starmark Ball,” Franklin says. “These are safe and durable and they last a long time.” Hide treats or peanut butter inside so that your dog doesn’t lose interest, and they’ll be working hard to excavate the deliciousness all afternoon.

Make Sure They Aren’t Lonely

How to help a depressed dog

If another dog in your home has recently passed away or your partner has moved out, your pup could be grieving this loss. Someone who works outside the home isn’t able to give their dog regular attention during work hours, but if you can make room for it in your budget, having someone look after them might be a good option. “For example, if your pet is very social but gets stressed when she is alone, you could consider options such as a doggy daycare or a dog walker mid-day,” Landis-Hanna says. Even if you take them to daycare only a couple of days a week, having someone to hang out with might make a big difference in their mood.

Provide More Exercise And Stimulation

Chances are the dog that passed away played a large role in the day-to-day life of your other dog. They may have played together or napped together. One may have acted as a leader to the other. Losing this relationship may leave the remaining dog feeling bored and anxious. You can help your dog deal with boredom and anxiety by providing him with more and mental stimulation.

Fortunately, there are some things you can do to help keep your dog’s spirits up.

  • Take your dog for an extra walk each day.
  • Provide plenty of interesting toys

Getting A Depressed Dog Happy

Turning your dogs mood around isnt always as easy as waving the ball around, but with a little investigation and time, you can treat your pets depression.

This time for you and your dog is a season in life. Once you solve the underlying issues, you can get back to those sunshiney days of worry-free romping around the park.

 

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