A Case of Doggie Depression

In All About Me, Shelley Widhalm, What's important on February 24, 2013 at 11:30 am


I don’t like it when my BFF Shelley uses computers or cleans or does anything without me, especially when her attention is on the less important stuff of life.

She goes to work all day and doesn’t come home for eight hours (though I don’t understand time, I do know that it seems like forever). While she’s gone, I don’t eat or go potty, but resort to taking naps and barking at noises.

Given my days of loneliness and unasked for solitude, I want that when she comes home, she keeps me entertained. But she sometimes leaves again to see her friends, go to the gym or get dinner. All of it without me!

She’s worried I might have doggie depression. Her worry got me worried, so I went online and researched canine and dog depression.

Apparently the symptoms for depression are the same in dogs as in people, such as becoming withdrawn and inactive, changing eating and sleeping patterns, lacking enthusiasm and not participating in what were once considered enjoyable activities.

A trigger into the depressive state can be a change in the home environment (I visited Shelley’s dad for three weeks and now am back home for the second week), or a change in schedule (Shelley’s dad is retired and hangs out with me, while Shelley has to go to work all the time).

Research shows that most dogs bounce back within a few days or months if their owners give them some extra TLC following those changes, playing with them more, taking them on walks and doing those things they like to do.

Hint: I’m waiting for my TLC.

In the meantime, I eat like I always do, which is avoid my dog food in case something better comes along, but if I’m really hungry, I’ll eat it. Usually I eat my big meal at night because I’ve been waiting all day long for the good stuff.

I sleep the same during the entire night, except when trucks in the alley make noises or people talk outside the window, plus off and on during the day for my dog naps (not cat naps, because, well, you know …)

And I pout the same. I go under Shelley’s bed and hide and won’t come out until I feel like it.

Pet owners are advised to reward dogs when they show signs of happiness, but not when they pout or mope. The reward at the wrong time would make us think we’re being rewarded for that behavior. The thing is I’m rewarded for moping because Shelley keeps asking me what’s wrong. Duh! I have doggie depression.


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