Is My Dog Depressed?

September 30th, 2021

Dogs experience a range of emotions just like us; therefore, they can also suffer from depression and anxiety. 

Has your dog lost interest in playing, walking, and other things he is usually excited about and makes him happy? Is he less active, slower?

What causes my dog’s depression?

A big change, distressing event in your dog’s life can sometimes bring on depression. 

For example:

  • loss of a family member and
  • loss of an animal friend,
  • sense of grief experienced by humans around him

all this can affect your dog’s overall emotions.

How do I know if my dog has depression?

 Depression symptoms in dogs are similar to those in humans:

  • Low activity levels.
  • A loss of interest in the things they once enjoyed.
  • A change in eating and/or sleeping habits.

Some dogs may also howl or whine.

How can I help treat my dog’s depression or anxiety?

Dogs can often overcome depression on their own. It may take days, weeks, or even months. As we know, time is the best healer, but it is sad to see your dog depressed. 

You can try the following:

  • Offer your dog more attention. Touch and gentle, relaxing massage release the hormone oxytocin. Oxytocin creates a sense of well-being and happiness, not just for our dogs.
  • Take your dog for a walk to some exciting place or to meet some doggie friends. 
  • Play with your dog, and do the activities he used to enjoy

In some cases, depression may be a symptom of an underlying medical condition, and a visit to a vet is advisable. 

Aromatherapy can also help. Here is heart-warming feedback I have received from Rhian Young, from All Kind Dog Grooming: 

” I just wanted to share an experience with you. Earlier this week I had a dog in for a groom who is 12 and a half years old. The owner told me that a few weeks ago they had to say goodbye to their other spaniel. She said that her dog was grieving and desperately needed a pamper. When she arrived and the owner left she lay by the door as if she’d given up. I used your Calming Floral Spray in abundance through the appointment while I made her more comfortable removing her matts. She was shaking initially but stopped as she realised she was safe, and I have no doubt the spray helped. She even fell asleep while I clipped. After the appointment and many sprays later, she looked so happy! She rumbled up and down my garden with a spirit she didn’t come with! I genuinely believe it helped with her grief and the owner texted me later telling me “she is so much happier.”

Has your dog been depressed? 

Jitka xx

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