A topic of debate: can your pets experience depression? Some say yes, others laugh at the idea. There are many signs that your pet may be experiencing some tough times, but are they signs of depression, or just boredom? Here are some ways you can tell, and how you can prevent depression in your pets at home.
How can you prevent your pets from becoming depressed:
It usually won’t take too long for your pet to get back to their happy little selves. It just takes some TLC and a little bit of extra attention. Take time out of your day, and play with your pet with some pet supplies from MyDeal. Give them big cuddles and take them for an extra long walk.
What are some signs of depression in pets?
Some signs that your pet is experiencing a change in attitude are:
- Decreased appetite
- Lack of interest in exercising
- Increased accidents in the house
Pet behaviourist, Laura Vissaritis from Dognitive Therapy explains further. “Pets are emotional beings, just like us. This is perhaps why they make such great companions, but also why they too can suffer from poor mental health such as depression and anxiety. As an animal behaviourist, I have witnessed thousands of cases in which dogs in particular have suffered these emotional set backs, which is understandably heart breaking for devoted owners as well as being devastating for the dogs themselves. The good news however, is that once we get to know the true personality of our pet, we can understand what sorts of experiences make them feel anxious or depressed and even more so, what makes them feel happy and optimistic.” Find out more about Laura V by following her on Facebook and Instagram.
If your little fur baby is feeling left out and lonely, it may be a good idea to keep a comfy pet bed inside where you spend most of your time in the house. Whether this be the bedroom or the living room, it’s important that your pet knows that they’re a member of the family, and keeping them in the loop with your family can help lift their spirits.
Be sure to check with a vet:
Since our furry little pals can’t communicate with us like we do with each other, it can bed hard to tell if your pet is sad or sick. A lot of symptoms overlap with each other, so if you’re in doubt, take your pet to the vet. They may not be sad at all, they may actually be sick, and that’s something that you should take care of straight away. If you notice any changes in behaviour in your little fur baby, take them to the vet. It can be something more serious than just seasonal sadness.
Nathan Williams, the Dog Behaviour Specialist offers his advice for preventing anxiety in dogs. “With your puppy, be sure to set boundaries immediately. Below is a link that will talk you through just that. Your dog needs to know where to go and what to do, and they shouldn’t learn it by being locked in a crate or room. They shouldn’t be free to run around the house and learn that they are allowed to follow you without being invited or led. You should have the ability to have your puppy stay in their bed on your terms and lead them out to the toilet where you want them to go rather than letting them make a mistake and getting mad at them.” Find out more about Nathan by following him on Facebook.