Dog is a friendly and cheerful pet, and there are so many things dog can do to help us. We can train dog to be almost everything. From a shepherd dog, rescue dog, police dog, even therapy dog. Its ability to understand what we want is extremely amazing. Dog’s ability to make our life easier and happier has been proved everywhere across the world. But there’s one small thing most people forget about this particular pet.
Dog is able to get depressed, too. There are various reason or causes of the depression, and it’s handled differently for different case. How to know what makes your dog depressed and how to cure it? Here we will tell you about 10 effective methods to treat depression in dog and what caused it. Soon, you don’t have to worry about depressed floof buddy anymore!
What caused depression in dog?
There are some things that caused depression in dog. One, lack of attention. Dog craves love and affection, not just from other dogs but also from people around it. When people or other dogs ignore the dog, it will get sad and refuse to play or eat. Other reason, the attention is diverted to other objects. Maybe when you have newborn baby or new pet in your house, that’s when your dog starts to feel jealous. And when you still ignoring your dog, it will get depressed. Or, when your dog have only few routines. Dog is born with excessive energy. It loves to play, run, and goof around to drain those energy. So when you don’t set proper amount of activities for your dog, it will get bored. And the boredom will lead to depression.
What are effective methods to treat depression in dog?
Those three mentioned above are the biggest factor of depression in dog. There are lots more aside those, but pay attention when you notice the sign of depression in your dog. It must be solved immediately to avoid other bad things to happen inside your house.
1. Stop the boredom
Like those mentioned above, boredom will lead to depression. Stop the boredom before it switched! You can give your dog new toys, new stuffs that will attract its attention. Or if you’re on a budget limit, you can change its toys periodically. Try to change the toy twice in a month, yet save some cash to buy a new one. This way, you will still able to keep your dog away from boredom without spending too much on his toys.
2. Set the routines
Again, dog needs to let out its excessive energy. Set activities for your dog, like fetching the newspaper every morning. Or let your dog every evening out to your lawn, chasing some birds around. Make sure your dog has enough activities to drain their energy. If you’re busy, you can put your dog in a shelter nearby. Shelter will provide your dog with various activities while you’re on work. But if you feel uncomfortable and want to set the activities on your own, you can read more in Ways to Housebreaking Your Puppy When You Work Full Time.
3. Socialize your dog
Dog is a social-type of pet, it loves to meet new friends. Either it’s human or other dogs, it will sniff and bark happily to welcome the new friend. When you notice your dog is getting depressed, take your dog to a walk to the park. Let it play with other dogs, and socialize with other dog owners. This way, the dog won’t get depressed and stay all happy and healthy. How to Make a Dog Listen and Obey to You Outside is a good guidance for you to make sure your play-date is fun.
4. Training session
It’s amazing to know how smart dog is. Dog understands almost all of our commands, as long as it’s short and clear. A training session for your dog is a good distraction from depression. By being trained, dog will be guided to get a series of hurdles. This training session will increase its agility and also able to drain its energy as well. Though maybe at first, you will need a professional to do it. Later on, you can figure out the good training session to do in your home. Don’t forget the reward if your dog passed the training well.
5. New tricks
Teaching new tricks is also an exciting things to do for your dog. It will get excited at first and will try its best to understand and do what you want. Though you need to be patient since some dogs can’t directly understand to what we asked for. You can repeat the tricks few times. When your dog does your command correctly, don’t forget to give the reward. Either it’s a treat, or a nice pat on its head. Check on How to Make a Dog Listen to Your Command to make the teaching process easier!
6. Reward is a must!
I’ve mentioned in two sub-points above about rewards. Reward is a very important factor in protecting your dog from depression. It makes your dog realize that when something good is done, reward is waiting. And who hate reward? This is why you need to make sure you give the rewards after your dog did good. It ensures your dog to do the good things again and again, as long as you give the rewards!
Routine check-ups is also important to keep your dog all healthy. Vet or expert knows best at how to treat a depressed dog once all tricks above didn’t work. They know what to do with many different case of depressed dog since it’s their job. They have more knowledge and experience at handling a depressed dog. Make sure you didn’t skip the check-up schedule to keep your dog all healthy and happy. 20 Warning Signs That You Must Take Your Dog to The Vet is a great guidance for you, check it out!
8. Herbal treatment
When you notice your dog gets depressed and all methods above didn’t work, take your dog to the vet. Try to consult the condition with the vet, and if your dog needs treatment, try to ask for the herbal ones. Since it’s safer for your dog and has less side effects as well. Consult too about how to make sure your dog eats its medicine. Some dogs are quite tough when it comes to particular treatment or medicine.
9. Various treats
Imagine when you get the same dish over and over again for a day. You must be bored, right? This is also applied to your dog. It will get bored and depressed when you give it the same diet again and again for days. Try to vary the menu, add some new flavor your dog might love. Mix the menu every day if you can, but at least do that twice a week. Make sure your dog eat its diet and doesn’t leave a single drop of its meal! Read more about its diet in 7 Advice to Treat Your Skinny Dog and Gain Healthy Weight.
Let your dog hunts! It’s in the blood, after all. Dog loves to sneak and pounce at its prey or target. Try to hide some of its toys in some corner of your house or lawn. Let your dog sniff out and sneak to find the toys. This is also applied to its favorite snacks. You can slip some in safe areas around your house and let your hunt the snacks. This will keep your dog away from depression and also keeping its hunting sense all alerted.
Voila! That’s 10 effective methods to treat depression in dog, and it’s proven easy and effective! Make sure you don’t run out of patience while doing the methods. Hope you and your floof buddy are all happy and healthy!