Make sure your Dogs are MENTALLY Healthy with these Tips from Active Dog! - Westport Moms

 

May is Mental Health Awareness Month! Dogs can suffer from mental health issues just like us humans. Sadly, they cannot always tell us what is wrong though. Here are some potential signs your pup may be silently asking for help.

Compulsive licking is one indication of stress or anxiety,
“Whale eye,” when dogs show the whites of their eyes during an interaction.
Out of the norm potty accidents
Destructive behaviors
Change in appetite

Always consult with your vet if you suspect your pup might not be feeling 100%. You are your dogs advocate after all! However, there are ways to combat anxiety and depression in your dog!

Number one is EXERCISE! A good run and lots of walking will not only drain any excess energy, but will aid in the production of both endorphins and serotonin which will help your anxious or high energy dog to feel calm and relaxed.

If you have to leave your dog for an extended period of time, try playing some classical music! Studies have shown many dogs prefer classical music and it can help drown out any outside noise that might cause them alarm.

Enrichment, enrichment, enrichment! A bored dog can lead to destructive behaviors and an unhappy pup. Have you come home to chewed up furniture, toilet paper run across the house, or your garbage can turned upside down? You’ve done the physical exercise but mental stimulation is just as important to your dog’s overall wellbeing. Stuffed puzzle toys with hidden squeakers inside or even just a rolled up towel with some of their kibble masked inside is a great way to get their nose involved! Experts have found that 20 minutes of sniffing is equivalent to an hour’s walk in terms of enrichment for your dog!

We love our four legged friends and want them to live long and happy lives. Giving your dog plenty of exercise and mental stimulation is a great way to ward off those unwanted behaviors and potential mental health issues.

Don’t always have the time to get in that exercise? That’s where Active Dog can help! Our 60-90 minute off leash nature pack hikes are the perfect way to get your dogs energy out and plenty of socialization in! Join the pack today! www.activedog.org

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