How does my dog know that I'm depressed?
Is your dog sad? How you can recognize it - and how you can help
Does your dog suddenly behave differently than usual? Does he seem sad somehow? Then it is important to carefully observe its signals - because there could be a disease behind them. Or depression.
Because dogs can get depression just like humans. This is indicated by several circumstances: Among other things, dogs have the same neurochemicals as we do and also release stress hormones such as adrenaline and cortisol.
According to the magazine “Country Living”, possible triggers for depression in dogs are, for example, the move in of a new partner or baby, a move, the death of another pet or empathy with a depressed master or mistress.
Depression in dogs can express itself in a similar way to humans, some four-legged friends, for example, withdraw and become less social. Maybe your dog is "just" sad - or there is something more serious behind it.
This is how you can tell that your dog is sad or depressed
- ... is less active
- ... is not interested in activities that he actually enjoy
- ... is hiding and no longer wants to go for a walk
- ... changes his eating habits, eats little or nothing at all
- ... spends more time sleeping
- ... howls and howls for no understandable reason
- ... licks itself excessively, especially its paws
- ... puts your ears flat
- ... interacts less with other dogs
- ... "unlearned" parts of his upbringing, for example is no longer house-trained
- ... behaves aggressively towards other dogs or suddenly destroys things.
If you notice such behavior in your four-legged friend, you should make an appointment with him at the vet. Because maybe your dog is not just sad - changes in behavior can also indicate the onset of an illness.
To rule this out, a visit to the vet is very important.
Your dog is sad? That's how you cheer him up
Fortunately, there are a few things you can do to improve your four-legged friend's mood. A first step can be to pay more attention to it. At least as important: outdoor activities. A lot of exercise in the fresh air is a real good mood booster - for dogs as well as people. If, on the other hand, your dog is under-challenged and bored, it can quickly turn into sadness.
Experts also recommend developing and maintaining a daily routine with your dog. The familiar structure helps the fur nose to recover from periods of grief.
For example, set the afternoon lap to a certain time or serve your four-legged friend as much as possible at constant times. Keeping up the routine is especially important if your dog is sad because of a major change - for example, a child is leaving to study or his canine friend has died.
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