Like humans, a couple of dogs tend to go through bouts of depression occasionally. Of course, a depressed dog does not have the capacity to reason like humans, but this does not mean they do not experience depression. Fortunately, depression experienced by canines is not as complicated as that of human beings.
When depressed, Fido often appears lethargic, sad and withdrawn, and some of them eat less than usual or stop eating altogether. Depressed dogs also drink little amounts of water and are generally not interested in playing, leading to loss of weight and development of various physical illnesses. As a loving dog owner, here are some tips that will help lighten canine depression.
Tips to get your depressed dog to happy
Maintain a Consistent Exercise Routine
Some of the major causes of depression in dogs are a major move or the addition of a new family member. If such changes interrupt your dog’s usual routine, consider walking him or her at specific times of the day so there is a sense of consistency. In addition, increased physical activity helps spark the production of endorphin, stops dog obesity, reduces energy levels further, and controls pet depression.
Concentrate on Dog Training
Concisely, a disciplined dog is always a happy dog. Invest some extra time in training, either at home or with the help of a professional, to give your pet a sense of purpose and important behavioral boundaries.
Reward Your Dog for Positive Behavior
It is critical that you constantly reward good behavior instead of using healthy dog treats or praise as a means of cheering up your dog. In fact, doing this is likely to backfire if your furry friend associates your affection and snacks with their depressed state. Simply put, wait until your dog is active again, and ready to engage, before you break out the toys and snacks as rewards.
Use Natural Supplements and Remedies
Omega 3s and Omega 6s have essential fatty acids that are capable of supporting everything from the immune system to brain functions. Research shows these fatty acids also have anti-inflammatory properties that can help improve the mood. However, dogs cannot produce these nutrients on their own, so you need to feed them with all-natural dog food or supplement their current diet with high-quality fish oil.
Some pet supplements like probiotics have also been linked with the enhancement of mood. Your dog’s gut is home to numerous bacteria, including the ones that feed serotonin – the “happy” endorphins.
Activate Their Natural Instincts
Helping your dog tap into his or her natural instincts is a great way of helping them break out of their lull – after all, dogs are natural hunters. Some ideas include placing a bird feeder in your garden and watching your dog get excited by the prospect of a hunt. Alternatively, consider taking Fido out to a dog adventure he will not forget by booking a pet holiday like no other – go to a website that offers dog-friendly holiday cottages.
Rule Out Medical Problems
Some pet depression symptoms are there because of them going through some undiagnosed medical predicament. Taking your dog to your vet for a regular quick checkup will help in ruling out health conditions, or they can help you start treatment as soon as possible.
Give Fido Time
A dog’s depression ordinarily takes some days or weeks before it blows over, but your pet returns to normal ultimately. If your pet is grieving unnecessarily, contemplate visiting a veterinary behaviorist.
Fortunately, most dogs’ mood changes are usually corrected without intervention over time. However, this does not mean that you should ignore any small changes in their mood. Apart from offering your dog an all-natural and healthy diet, give him some extra attention and plenty of love in order to combat doggie depression.
Have you had experience with a depressed dog?