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5 Alarming Signs Your Dog Has a Mental Illness

dog mental illness
Photo by Lukas Maverick Greyson from Shutterstock

Social anxiety

Furry companions will often show signs of dog mental illness when they have previously experienced neglect. For example, dogs who were strays, were rescued from puppy mills, or were saved from situations of neglect or abuse will usually develop social anxiety.

This social condition can cause them to experience crippling anxiety when being around humans or other dogs and can even lead to aggression.


As in people’s cases, there are physical signs of dog mental illness too. Since our furry friends can’t tell us what they are feeling, it’s vital to pay attention to their behavior. If your pet is more lethargic than usual, becomes withdrawn, and appears sadder, they may be in a depressive state.

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

This disorder, also known as OCD, can mean many things, but when it comes to dogs, it’s when the pet’s behavior is strange, out of context, and directed toward objects. If your four-legged companion is excessively repeating certain obsessive behaviors (biting their food bowl, tail chasing, etc.), then it’s possible they’re experiencing OCD.

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