When the temperature drops, so can the human mood. Some people experience seasonal affective disorder (SAD). We all know at least one person who has difficulty during dark, cold winter evenings. The question is, do dogs experience the same issues as their human companions?
Pet owners who responded to a Daily Mail survey in the U.K. indicated they noticed changes in how pets behave in winter. Some of the behavioral changes they observed include the following:
The survey was only submitted in the UK and measured how owners perceive their pets. There isn’t enough scientific data to indicate that pets experience SAD.
Dogs who seem to have symptoms of SAD may be reflecting the behavior they perceive in their owner. Dogs often mirror the mood and behavior of their owners. Dogs are very wise, and they can mirror the behaviors they notice in their owner.
Dogs can notice the change from an active lifestyle to a sedentary one. As a result, the animal begins to act more sedentary too. The dog may stay right at the owners’ side, and owners may find their dog mimicking whatever they are doing.
The winter months make it harder for dogs to get outside, run, and play. Being inside all the time may cause the dog to get bored. Dogs are happiest when they have physical activities to keep them moving, playing, and smelling all the aromas around them. When the animals can’t get outside to run and move, their boredom can make them seem depressed.
Even though there isn’t research proving dogs suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder, there are some ways you can help lift their mood during the winter.
Dogs, like humans, often seem down in winter. While there isn’t definitive evidence that the animals suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder, they mimic the mood of their owners. You can create an environment that keeps your dog (and you) happier in winter if you take the time to make a few changes to your routine. Contact Dog Training Now Charleston to learn more!
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