Dogs are an important part of our daily lives. They are constant, loyal companions ready and willing to shower you with unconditional affection. They each possess unique characteristics, idiosyncrasies and personalities. Sometimes, though, their happy demeanors can be altered as a result of changes in their daily lives. After experiencing a large amount of change, dogs have been known to start acting withdrawn, and their normal exuberance can be replaced by hesitation and shyness. This is known as canine depression, and this article is meant to provide a general overview of tips and methods to help your best friend return to his or her normal happy state.
What Causes Depression in Dogs?
While there’s no official determination of the specific cause of canine depression, life-changing events have generally been known to induce depression in dogs. Examples include the death of a fellow pet, a move to a new, unknown area or a new baby or other member of the household. Luckily, very rarely do dogs suffer from long-term depression. They’ll typically stop exhibiting gloomy symptoms after a few months.
A Little Extra TLC Goes a Long Way
Every little bit helps, and this is particularly true when it comes to picking up your canine’s spirits. Try to alleviate your dog’s somber mood by providing a little extra love and attention to your dog. Be wary however – dolling out excessive amounts of tasty treats might make the dog think he or she is being rewarded for the subdued behavior. It’s essential to provide additional love but not go overboard in the process.
Consider Adding a New Pet to the Family
If you strongly believe your dog’s depression was directly caused by the death of another one of your pets, you might want to explore the possibilities of adopting a new companion for your dog. This may help lift your pup’s spirits. Just make sure they get along first, and take care introducing the new friend.
Get Advice About Medical Solutions
If your efforts aren’t succeeding, it may be time to visit your veterinarian. Many human anti-depressants have become available for dogs, including Paxil, Prozac and Zoloft. Be sure to consult your veterinarian for advice about your pet’s specific condition. Any time your pet is showing behavioral changes, it’s a good idea to visit a veterinarian to make sure there’s not a medical condition behind the issue. Furthermore, it could be beneficial to consider a pet insurance plan. ASPCA Pet Health Insurance is a great option for many pet parents.
Ultimately, depression in dogs is a difficult experience. Luckily, there are some things you can do about it. For more advice about your specific pet’s needs, visit your pet’s veterinarian. Your veterinarian is there to help, and their advice can make a big difference.
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