A few common causes of doggy depression include:
- The loss of another dog
- The loss of an owner
- Welcoming a new dog into the family
- Welcoming a baby into the family
- A new spouse moves in
- Moving to a new house/apartment
- An owner get’s a new job and the pooch is now left alone for hours
- Lack of stimulation
While it’s hard for us to know for sure if our fur babies are feeling depressed (since they can’t simply tell us), there are a few signs we can look for. Below are the 5 warning signs your dog is depressed:
1) CHANGES IN SLEEP PATTERN
He should want to run around, play, and have your full attention. If your pooch continues to sleep when you get home and ignores your presence, take that as a major red flag.
On the flip-side, another warning sign of depression is restlessness. If your fur baby refuses to nap and isn’t sleeping through the night, there’s a problem.
2) CHANGES IN APPETITE
If you notice a change in your dog’s eating habits it may be because he’s feeling overwhelmed with emotions. When dogs are depressed they will either lose interest in their food and drop a few pounds OR they will eat everything in sight and gain weight. It’s just like how humans deal with stress and depression – some people stress eat and others lose their appetite completely.
3) LOSS OF INTEREST
Has your dog suddenly stopped playing with his toys? Does he refuse to play with his other best four-legged friends? Do you have to drag him outside to go on walks? If your pooch has suddenly lost interest in the things that used to excite him, he may be suffering from depression
When a dog hides in a closet or quiet room of your house it’s usually because he’s ill or injured. Depression is considered a mental illness. So if your dog doesn’t show any signs of injury and is hiding, it may be because he’s very sad.
5) EXCESSIVE CHEWING
Is your dog on a sudden destruction streak? A typically calm dog that’s randomly chewing up the furniture (and everything else in sight) is most likely bored and/or depressed.
WHAT TO DO IF YOUR DOG IS DEPRESSED
Shower him with love and attention. Get him active. Force him to go on walks. Of course, don’t forget to bring the treats along with you. As soon as you notice your dog acting normal again, give him a tasty prize. Doggy depression doesn’t usually last long. Your pooch should be back to normal in no time.