Like humans, dogs have bad moods & also get depressed. The whys and wherefores of the dogs to enter the phases of depression might be some major changes in a dogs’ environment, living circumstances or some medical condition. But it is hard to know because they can’t be asked & they can’t tell you, but it is through their behavior that you can assess. The most palpable reasons include:
- Shifting to a new home.
- Addition of another pet in family.
- A new spouse or baby in family.
- Change in the dog’s environment & schedule.
- Not getting the attention it is adapted to.
- Loss of a companion animal.
- loss of an owner.
Taking care of a Shih Tzu is not that easy, but one factor that makes it hard is how to know if your Shih Tzu is suffering from depression. It is obvious that the dog is depressed when it seems
- Down & dejected (stops correlating with its companions, as well as special people)
- Weary, in active & stops going out on walks (shows no interest in walks or playing & moves slow)
- Change in appetite (Shih Tzu eat a lot just like other breeds of dogs, but if it eats less or more than before, then surely there is something wrong).
- Change in Sleep conduct (Sleeps more or may become restless and unable to sleep properly. If Shih Tzu is sleeping more than it usually did, then this is one major sign as well.
- Too much paw licking & chewing (If the body posture of the dog changes like licking its paws, constant itching & yawning).
- Stops partaking in things it once enjoyed. (Shih Tzu love sticking their noses in everything, they are always busy playing with stuff, but when they are suffering from stress this stops, and they don’t interact with the surroundings much).
- Being assertive (If Shih Tzu is unfriendly with other animals or people surrounding it and is giving scary facial expressions).
- Having difficulty in excreting (If dog’s feces are rough and hard, then it may be a sign of stress. However, this can be caused by other diseases too).
- Wanders about apathetically because of boredom.
- Hides itself in a closet (Wants to be left alone)
Treatment of the Depression:
It has been noticed that mostly the depressed dogs bounce back to normal behavior within few days or months, when an extra special care is taken by the owners that involves:
Keep the dog engaged in things it like to do.
- Get it to do a little more exercise
- Reward with treats when (during depression) it obeys your commands & seems happier.
- Take it to car rides each day.
- If possible, bring a new pet in home (If the reason of depression is loss of companion)
- If nothing helps, then the medications can help dog get past its depression (so consult the Vet)