Do Dogs Get Depressed?

Our dogs have an incredible bond with us.  You may notice that your dog stays a bit closer to you when you aren't feeling well, have a cold or are sad.  Dogs have an ability to sense changes in our emotion and our well being.  It's one of the things that makes dogs unique.   Dogs often wag their tags to show their emotions.  They lick, they jump, bark and bite.  But dogs can also have their bad days too. Do dogs get depressed?

Have you ever noticed that your dog may seem down? Perhaps when you are going on a trip or do not pay attention to him? 

Experts on dog behavior say that dogs rely on human interaction.  They can become quite sad when we are removed from them for long periods of time.  If we are working long hours, or out of town and leave them alone, for example.  

Dogs are social animals.  They do not like to be alone for long periods of time.  By instinct, they live in packs, much like the wolf.  They form bonds with other dogs and when there are no other dogs around, they will form bonds with humans as if we are their pack leaders.  We become their family so when we no longer spend time with them, they do become sad.  

If you notice your dog is no longer herself, but there are no medical reasons, try to spend more time with her.  Make an effort to talk to her regularly just so she can hear your voice when you are in the room.  Often this helps a dog know that they are not alone.  If you travel or work long hours, you may consider a pet sitter or doggie day care.  

Dogs get depressed but with some love and affection, they should come right back around and experts tend to agree that a dog's depression is not like ours.  It's not clinical and does not require medication.  Just a bit of attention.  Of course if you notice drastic changes in your canine, please take him to the vet immediately.