Dogs and Mental Health

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Did you ever think all you need to do to keep your dog happy is give him plenty of food, exercise, and play time? Some experts think a pet owner must consider a dog's mental health to keep him happy.

A dog's mental health problems can be seen in various ways. For example, a dog kept in a cage too long may become aggressive and develop cage rage. That dog may look upon the cage as his territory. He may need obedience training. Another dog mental health problem can cause him to panic when he is left home alone and tear up furniture, rags, or bark constantly. Dogs destroy property to try to force you to return. Crate training can be effective in dealing with this problem.

A dog can develop serious mental health problems if he is tied to a leash or chain all day, and can become bitter.

If a dog is scared by loud noises such as firecrackers, or gunfire, this mental health problem may cause a dog to escape. A dog with that problem has not had enough socialization when he was young.

Physical issues can cause mental health problems in a dog. A dog that has pain, a loss of appetite, or tumors can become aggressive, even with children. If your dog has any of the mental health problems mentioned, visit a vet to see if the problems were first physical. A dog's mental health can even be affected by the loss of a loved one or a move. A dog can also have anxiety around other dogs or a lot of people.

Depression is one dog mental health problem that can cause serious physical problems.

The best cure for a dog's mental health problems may be love, fun, play, and attention, according to experts.