Dog depression symptoms – is your dog depressed?

Narrated from: Dog Health

“Hey buddy, ya wanna go for a walk?”

“Nah, not today. I am feeling kind of blue.”

One would expect to have such a conversation on the phone with a depressed friend. However, it turns out that human beings are not the only ones that can get the blues! Men’s best friend is prone to depression as well.

What are the symptoms of dog depression?

A dog’s depression is quite similar to a human’s. Any change in the dog’s character can indicate that something is wrong. When depressed, most dogs become withdrawn and inactive. If Fido doesn’t want to play his favorite games, then chances are high that the dog is unhappy. Many dogs also change their eating habits. A depressed dog will sometimes start to eat excessively, and thus gain weight. However, some dogs actually stop eating – so a sudden loss of appetite should worry you. Other dogs will refuse to drink water.

With most dogs the main symptom is listlessness. If the dog starts to sleep more, or to act apathetically, then there is a high chance that the dog is depressed. However, any change in the dog’s behavior can indicate depression – this means that a depressed dog could actually become overactive, or aggressive. Much depends on the dog’s individual character, so basically you have to know your dog and watch out for unusual behavior.

What should I do if my dog is depressed?

You must go to the vet. There are illnesses that make dogs seem depressed. The vet has to check that the depression symptoms do not indicate a medical problem. However, more often than not the dog’s problem is purely psychological, and there are many ways to solve it.

What causes dog depression?

You should be on the watch for dog depression if a member of the household changes address or (God forbid), passes away. Dogs mourn just as people do. They become very attached to any member of the household, be it Man or Cat. Also, dogs do not understand human reasoning. For instance, if the family’s child grows up and goes to college or simply moves out, a dog won’t understand that and thus may become depressed. The other problem is that sometimes dogs just become too attached – so a dog could mourn its favorite squeaky toy if you throw it away!

Basically, any change in the household could trigger dog depression. Dogs (as well as cats) get used to a certain routine. If a new pet is introduced to the household, or a baby is born, some dogs will feel neglected.

With some dogs depression could be caused by certain weather changes – for instance, some dogs get depressed when there is a storm or a hurricane. It is speculated that those dogs react to changes in atmospheric pressure. Other dogs could have seasonal depression – usually in the winter.

Last but not least, dogs can suffer from chronic depression just as humans do. Chronic depression is usually due to a chemical imbalance. It must not be left untreated, for it will not pass with time.

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