If your corgi seems unusually down or not acting herself, there’s a chance that he or she is going through a spell of canine depression. There are a few tell-tale signs that indicate depression which I will cover below. I’ll also run through the likely causes and what you can do to help your corgi start feeling better. Let’s get into it.
Can Corgis Get Depressed?
Believe it or not, canine depression is just as real as the kind of depression that we can experience.
Your corgi is able to feel a wide range of emotions from happiness, sadness, jealousy, depression, and more.
Corgis in particular are a fairly sensitive breed to start with, and many things can evoke an emotional reaction from them.
Experts have found that canine depression is so similar to human depression, that a lot of the signs and causes are actually the same. This gives us a good starting point to identify depression and help your corgi.
5 Signs Your Corgi Is Depressed
So how do you even know if your corgi is depressed or not? Well, there are 5 typical signs that corgis and all dogs display when depressed or feeling down.
1. Lack of interest
A general lack of interest in the things he or she used to enjoy is a classic sign of depression.
Not having the same desire to run around, chase their ball, interact with you, and generally enjoy themselves, suggests that there’s something wrong.
If you’re dealing with a senior corgi, this sign might become more unreliable, due to their old age slowing them down anyway. But if you have a young or middle-aged corgi and see them displaying a sudden lack of interest, it’s a good indication that there is an issue.
2. Hiding and avoiding
Another very common sign of depression is when your corgi frequently hides away by herself and generally tries to avoid everyone in the house.
Many owners report their corgi retreating to their crate and refusing to get out, as well as wandering upstairs to lay down under the bed. If this sounds familiar to you, it’s worth extra investigation.
3. Change in sleeping habits
Just like with us, depression can cause your corgi to sleep much more than usual.
If your corgi doesn’t seem to want to get out of bed, and simply lays there all day, sleeping or even awake, it’s certainly an indication that something isn’t right. This is somewhat similar to having a lack of interest.
4. Change in appetite
A change in appetite, or a lack thereof, can also indicate depression. Again, this is very similar to how we might not feel like eating when we’re depressed.
Of course, this also happens to be a very common symptom of a wide range of underlying health issues, so it’s best to take the whole situation into context before jumping to conclusions.
5. Pacifying behaviors
Pacifying behaviors can indicate that your corgi is trying to cope with an increased level of stress, anxiety, or depression.
One of the most common forms of pacifying behaviors is excessively licking themselves, particularly their paws. If you notice this to be the case, it’s important to check the location that your corgi is focusing on, as it could indicate an alternative health issue.
● Take everything into context…
Ideally, you’ll want to see more than one single sign listed above before you can get a better clue as to what’s happening.
As you might have noticed, the signs above can also be symptoms of completely unrelated issues, and so that must be taken into account before assuming your corgi is depressed.
As well as looking for multiple signs, if you can get familiar with the potential causes of depression, this will give you a better understanding of the situation and the chances of it being depression. Let’s run through that now.
9 Reasons Why Your Corgi Could Get Depressed
So now you are aware of the signs that your corgi might display, what might actually be causing your corgi to be depressed? This section covers the 9 most likely reasons.
One of the most common causes of depression comes from grieving and mourning the loss of a loved one. And dogs are just as sensitive to the loss of a canine companion as they are a human companion (owner).
Grieving is not to be considered depression in and of itself, but if it continues for a prolonged period of time, it can lead to depression.
2. Underlying health issue & dealing with pain
A very common cause of depression is underlying health issues, sickness, or chronic pain. Unfortunately, it’s not as simple for our dogs to let us know in plain English that they’re in pain or not feeling well, so in many cases this happens without us knowing.
This is particularly true for corgis that are experiencing chronic pain and are not able to play, move or exercise normally. This obviously takes away from their quality of life and will impact their mood.
3. Someone in the house is depressed
If you didn’t already know, the emotions that we are feeling and the energy that we are giving off is completely picked up and understood by our dogs. Not only are dogs excellent at picking up on our emotions but they will often mirror the way we are acting and behaving.
If you or someone else in the household is going through something or feeling down in general, it could be the cause of your corgi acting down too.
4. The addition of a baby, partner, or new pet
With the addition of a new pet, baby, or partner, your corgi might feel less important or as if the attention is no longer on them. A change in the amount of attention your corgi receives can trigger many different responses from anxiety, aggression, and even depression.
In cases like this, depression might be either very short-lived while your corgi gets accustomed to the new change, or it could last a lot longer.
5. Change in diet
If your corgi is experiencing a change in mood, acting down, or depressed, it could be caused by their diet.
After speaking to several owners about this, a few of them mentioned that switching kibbles was what caused the noticeable change in mood, and after switching back, their corgi perked up again.
6. Change in exercise levels
Exercise has a big impact on your corgi’s overall health, not just physically, but mentally too. You know how they say you feel good after working out? Well, there is real science behind that, and it’s exactly the same for our canine companions too.
If your corgi is not receiving as much exercise as he or she would like, or once used to have, then it could seriously impact their mood for the worst. This ties in with health issues and dealing with pain that may prohibit your corgi from exercising as usual.
7. Not receiving enough of you
Your corgi could be depressed due to not receiving enough of her favorite person, you! If you’ve been working long hours and haven’t been able to spend as much time with your corgi it could seriously affect her mood and happiness.
Corgis love attention and spending time with their owners, if this is taken away or changed in any way, it’s possible for this cause a negative reaction.
8. Moving house & big changes in the environment
Big environmental changes, particularly if you move house, can certainly be a cause of depression in your corgi. Dogs are very sensitive to their environment and living area, and big changes can really throw them off making them feel lost, vulnerable and anxious.
It could be anything from moving home, getting new neighbors, new building work nearby, or the addition of new animals in the neighborhood.
9. Stress & anxiety
Stress and anxiety is the common theme related to all of the reasons listed above…
Stress and anxiety are two very broad conditions, both of which have so many causes themselves. If your corgi is stressed for any prolonged period of time (chronic stress) this can eventually take its toll and affect him mentally, causing things like depression.
It can be hard to diagnose stress and anxiety, because honestly, there’s no real way of telling (not for sure anyway!) So it’s important to consider your Corgi’s overall lifestyle and think if there are reasons why he could be stressed or anxious.
How To Help a Corgi With Depression
To help your corgi overcome his or her depression, you’ll first need to be sure that it is actually depression, and consider whether or not he has a legitimate reason to be depressed.
After seeing multiple signs, as well as identifying a potential cause, you are better ready to help your corgi.
For some issues, the answer isn’t so straightforward. For example, if your corgi is showing signs of depression after losing a canine companion or family member, the only thing you can really do is to be there and give him as much attention and support as much as possible. And with time, the situation should improve.
In other situations when there is a new pet, partner, or baby in the house, this will require a more delicate approach. You’ll essentially need to ensure that you and the rest of the family divide the attention fairly. It will also be necessary to facilitate and nurture a positive relationship between your corgi and the new addition. This takes time and caution.
If your corgi is showing signs of depression after you start working longer hours, this can be a tricky one to fix. This could involve changing your work schedule, attaining a lunch break at home, or having friends, family or a dog sitter to come over and keep your corgi company, instead being left alone.
In other cases, it could be as simple as receiving a lack of exercise, and so the obvious answer and likely solution is to increase his or her daily exercise to a more appropriate level.
Helping your corgi overcome depression can only be done if you have a good idea of what the cause is. Once you know the cause, you can work to try and find a counter resolution to whatever the trigger was.
When To See a Veterinarian
As I mentioned earlier, a lot of the signs of depression can also be signs of an underlying health issue unrelated to depression.
If you notice some of the signs happening but you can’t think of a really obvious cause, then it’s a good idea to consult your veterinarian to examine your corgi further.
It’s always best to play it safe when you are dealing with matters concerning the health and safety of your corgi. As much as we like to try and help, nothing beats the professional advice and knowledge that your local veterinarian can offer you.
Additional info on dog depression
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