You may be unaware that just like humans, your canine companion can also suffer from common mental health conditions such as depression and anxiety. To discover signs of dog mental health conditions and a guide to caring for your dog’s mental wellbeing, simply continue reading. Especially if you have a suspicion that your dog may currently be suffering from mental illness.
Caring for dogs mental health
The number one mental health condition which affects dogs:
The most common mental health condition which affects dogs is separation anxiety. As dogs are pack animals and often don’t like to be left alone for prolonged periods. If your dog has a habit of destroying items in your home when you go to work, barks or howls a lot when they are left alone or has toileting issues when they are left alone, there is a high chance that they suffer from a form of separation anxiety. If you notice that your dog is trembling when you get ready to leave, it’s also a clear sign that your dog becomes distressed when it’s obvious that they are about to be left alone.
If you believe that your dog may suffer from separation anxiety, it’s a great idea to ensure that your dog gets plenty of personal attention right before you leave your home and as soon as you get home. So that your dog learns that you are not going to abandon them. You may also want to consider dropping your dog off at a dog sitting facility while you’re at work or paying for a dog sitter, if your dog’s separation anxiety is severe. Alternatively, you may want to see if working from home more often is a viable option, so that you’ll be able to spend more time at home with your dog.
Other mental health conditions to look out for:
If you have an older dog, it’s worth keeping an eye out for signs of dementia. Dogs that have dementia are often disoriented or confused and have trouble responding to commands. Some may also forget that they have just eaten and may be prone to overeating. Further symptoms of dog dementia include dogs not being able to sleep through the night and frequently urinating. One of the best things that you can do to help an elderly dog, is to be patient with them and to spend lots of quality time with them.
Dogs who are depressed may seem less enthusiastic about the activities which they used to enjoy such as going for walks, eating and playing. If your dog is depressed, it’s a great idea to try and find the root cause of their depression. For example, you may want to spend more time with your dog or to purchase toys that will stimulate your dog’s brain.
In conclusion, if you want to ensure that your dog is mentally healthy or will enjoy the best possible quality of life in their final years, it’s well worth using the guide above to make a few changes to your dog’s life.
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