Targeting and preventing depression in your dog
Dogs are our best friends, so we want to ensure their lives with us are happy and healthy. Our dogs provide us with so much love and affection. It's only natural for us to return the favour for them. Dogs are smart animals that need lots of play-time and mental stimulation to maintain healthy living.
But sometimes, situations like moving to a new home or losing a furry companion might cause a lot of distress for them. High levels of distress can lead to depression and, when overlooked, can negatively impact your pooch's life.
Causes and Symptoms
It may be hard to determine if your dog is sad because it's just im-paws-able for them to walk their little furry selves up to you and tell you how they are feeling. But when your pet is down, there might be some indicators that they are struggling emotionally.
One of the most common triggers for sudden sadness in dogs is the loss of an owner or a companion. Dogs form strong bonds in both of these relationships. So when they are broken, your dog might go through a ruff patch.
Sudden changes in routine, lifestyle, or environment might put your pooch in a bad mood. Some pups feel intimidated by a new pet, child, or resident in the house. Which could quite paw-ssibly make them more withdrawn.
Eating and drinking habits might suffer too. If you have changed their home environment, it may take time for them to adjust. Until then, your ball of fur may show signs of depression. That could mean they are sleeping more than usual. Your little guy might even lose interest in playtime, treats, or getting pets.
How You Can Help
Never fret! Because while almost any sudden change in your dog's life can be stressful, they've got you! There are options to help them kick their bark-and-gloomy mood in no time! Dogs are very smart, so like us, they need plenty of physical and mental stimulation.
Give them fresh food and water daily to keep their bodies and minds strong. Encourage your pet to play with you and some of their toys to keep them exercising their mind. Sometimes, a new exciting toy can help catch the eye of more stubborn pups. Try the PlayPaw Floppy Fish designed to combat boredom and stress in your favourite pooch. They'll be going mutts with energy and joy in no time!
Get them out on a daily walk with this easy-to-secure Strong Custom Reflective Harness. That way, you can bring your pup on a relaxing walk whenever you want. Stress-free! You can even take them to dog parks or set up doggy dates, so they can play with other floppy-eared pooches. This can be really helpful, especially for dogs dealing with loss.
Not all pooches are equipped to walk on their own, and this can even be a cause for their woeful behaviour. But you’ve got options! Whether they have just gotten out of surgery or are healing from a minor injury, the PlayPaw Adventure Pouch can carry any pup up to 12 kilograms. So even when they can't walk, you can guarantee environmental stimulation by bringing them with you anyway. Just strap them to your back and set out for an adventure.
Literally, any pup can experience feelings of sadness and depression. While it's not always as severe as depression, it's a good idea to adjust their lives and shower them with extra attention. Some dogs will improve with outdoor stimulation or extra playtime. While others will simply go through a period of depression before adjusting and returning to their chipper selves. Either way, they're sure to return to their fur-bulous selves with treatment and time.