Dog Blues (Ⅰ)

“Animals, just like humans, have a spiritual realm, dogs that guard their owners home until they die of old age, cats that cry all the time because of the accidental death of their companions etc. In addition to the fact that these move us, is there anything important that we don’t notice?” When I first saw this quote in a video, I began to consider if dogs will get depressed.

When a dog has a mental problem, it can be more difficult than a human. Think about it, our partner or parents may not even be honest enough to tell us about the mental symptoms and problems they are experiencing, let alone a dog that has no way to communicate with words. He can’t describe his feelings, if we ignore his problems, and he has to put up with it, day after day, with no way to eat properly until he completes his extreme sexual rituals. The body and the mind always affect each other. A bad body can make a bad mental state, and a bad mood can make a bad physical state even more worrisome.

So, what are the signs when a dog is depressed?

1. Hard to get excited, no matter how much the owner teases or attracts, and even avoids the owner.

2. The interest in food, toys or activities that he/she used to like is greatly reduced.

3. Self-absorbed, unwilling to communicate with the owner or other pets, and suddenly starts to prefer to be alone.

4. Lazy, unwilling to go out of their nest or home except for necessary physical activities.

5. Slow to move, always seems to do everything slowly and weakly.

6. Sleepiness, sleep from morning to night.

7. Irritable, and he/she is difficult to calm down the anger in a short time.

8. Timid, easily being nervous, and reacts sharply to stimuli from the outside environment.

9. Increased aggressive behavior, violent behavior is one of the typical signs of depression in pets.

10. Significant decrease in appetite, eating less, and weight loss.

11. Significant reduction in water intake, much lower than before.

12. Abnormal hair loss, a lot of hair loss or pulling out their own hair.

In summary, excluding illness and physical aging, lethargy, low food intake, immobility, and loss of hobbies are typical symptoms of depression in dogs, and some pets may even experience massive hair loss, self-harm, and stereotypical behavior.

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