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Old January 11th, 2006, 08:29 AM
grapeshine grapeshine is offline
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Dog Depression - Answered by Dr. Van Lienden

Hi all, I apologize for making my first post a health query, but I'm at my wit's end here. We have a lovely ball of fluff named Thumper who we're very worried about. We took Thumper to get a haircut last week and since returning from her haircut she has eaten very little and is moping around the house. She's been clipped in the past and there has never been any trouble. She seriously went from being the happiest and most lovable dog in the world to a dog who constantly looks downright sad.

We have made 2 separate visits to the vet over the past 4 days. The vet (who we very much trust) gave Thumper a thorough examination and did blood work and xrays. Despite this sudden change in behaviour, the vet suggested that Thumper is perfectly healthy. Has anybody experienced anything like this? Can anyone offer any advice? Part of me wants to return to where we got Thumper clipped to ask some rather candid questions; another part of me says that doing this sort of thing will make me look like a lunatic. I just want my happy-go-lucky dog back!! Please help!!
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Old January 11th, 2006, 09:10 AM
Daizy Daizy is offline
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Of course it may not be your groomer but maybe you should check your groomer out. The first groomer I ever took Daisy too turned out was being cruel to her. I just put her unhappiness down to the fact that she was a puppy and getting used to being groomed. She didn't even want to step into the place when I took her, I had to pick her up to get her in. And she just wasnt' her self afterwards. It was only after subsequent visits that I actually saw the groomer pick her up by the throat and dangle her in the air while she hurled abuse at her! I reported her to the appropriate authorities but without pictures what can they do. She is still in business. Why don't you change groomer and see what happens. If you are in the Beaches in Toronto, if you pm me I can recommend the new groomer I take Daisy too, Daisy loves it there.
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Old January 11th, 2006, 09:33 AM
grapeshine grapeshine is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daizy
Of course it may not be your groomer but maybe you should check your groomer out. The first groomer I ever took Daisy too turned out was being cruel to her. I just put her unhappiness down to the fact that she was a puppy and getting used to being groomed. She didn't even want to step into the place when I took her, I had to pick her up to get her in. And she just wasnt' her self afterwards. It was only after subsequent visits that I actually saw the groomer pick her up by the throat and dangle her in the air while she hurled abuse at her! I reported her to the appropriate authorities but without pictures what can they do. She is still in business. Why don't you change groomer and see what happens. If you are in the Beaches in Toronto, if you pm me I can recommend the new groomer I take Daisy too, Daisy loves it there.
You're absolutely right, Daizy -- in the future we plan on being more discerning when it comes to picking a groomer (the thing is we've always been very happy with where we take her). As horrible as it sounds though, if Thumper doesn't start eating soon there won't be another trip to the groomers! Hopefully she will break out of her funk very soon.

p.s. I appreciate the groomer referral, but we're considerably north of the GTA.
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Old January 11th, 2006, 09:43 AM
SnowDancer SnowDancer is offline
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Since this was not your first visit to this particular groomer, is it possible he/she has a new assistant who perhaps was rough with your pup. I could also recommend a Toronto groomer but sounds as if you are too far north of Central Toronto. Hope puppy perks up soon. My Eskie does not like being groomed but sure struts his stuff afterwards.
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Old January 11th, 2006, 06:48 PM
t.pettet t.pettet is offline
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Depression

There are a variety of reasons why your dog's grooming experience was negative:
1) she was treated roughly and perhaps groomer was very rushed, short tempered with her,
2) she had a bad meeting with an anxious, aggressive dog
3) her new look was laughed at by someone in your family and she's embarrased. I would recommend finding a small, quiet grooming facility and watch how they interact with her. If possible stay for the grooming session if the shop doesn't allow that then find a groomer who will. No matter how different she looks with her new hairdo tell her she's beautiful. Something traumatic has happened - if only our dogs could talk.
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Old January 11th, 2006, 06:57 PM
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happycats happycats is offline
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I agree with the above posters.

and I know there are groomers that come to the house, you may want to look into it for future grooming. Although we found our dog didn't behave as well when her groomer came to the house .
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Old January 11th, 2006, 07:34 PM
joeysmama joeysmama is offline
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This happened to my aunts dog after going to the groomer. And it wasn't the first time going. But the groomer decided it would make her job easier if she gave the dog a sedative. Without asking permission. She just did it. Springy just laid around for a couple of days. He was a tiny dog too and she never found out the dosage or exactly what he was given. I can't remember the details of how she found out that this was the cause. I think she just went in and questioned the groomer who didn't thinks she'd done anything all that wrong !! Sheesh !!
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Old January 12th, 2006, 03:44 AM
grapeshine grapeshine is offline
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Thanks everyone! I know dogs can be upset, but I didn't realize it could be so excessive. Thumper does seem to be slowly returning to her old self, so I suppose that's good news. She's such a big part of our family that it seems like we're all as depressed as she is. She's just a little dog (a Shih Tzu/ Bichon cross) so I entertained the idea that a bigger dog took advantage of her (if you know what I mean). My friends dismissed this theory and called me perverse. The real shame of all this is that it wasn't even a particularly good haircut.
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Old January 12th, 2006, 05:56 PM
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lm9012 lm9012 is offline
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i agree that it was probably her experience at the groomer's that did it. Either they were rough with her or she had a bad run in with another dog. Albert isn't super playful but will tolerate other dogs just fine when we go to the dog park. I took him to meet my best friend's newly adopted Beagle girl over x-mas break. She was younger and bigger (not very disciplined yet) and was being excessively dominant with him..sure enough they started growling and went at each other. Luckily we each grabbed our respective dogs on time..or else they would've really let each other have it. I left immediately. He was acting very quiet and kinda bummed the rest of the night. A few days later we took him to the same dog park we always go to and he spent the entire time between our legs! When a friendly boxer tried to play with us, Al snapped on him and scared him away! It took a while for him to get back to normal! Al is a very well tempered boy!
I really hope that Thumper gets over her little hump soon..show her lots of love and definetely look into a different groomer.
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Old January 23rd, 2006, 08:45 AM
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petdr petdr is offline
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This is a difficult problem to tease apart: veterinarians are often challenged to distinguish the physical from the mental/emotional/behavioral problems that we are often presented. Thumper could have had a traumatic episode at the groomer's, or maybe not. I will attempt to break this down into a flow chart of a sort based on physical vs. mental possibilities, but bear in mind that it is possible to have both parts involved.

It was a good decision to have blood work and x-ray films taken to further delineate the problem. Despite your veterinarian's pronouncement that Thumper is healthy, do not overlook the possibility of either an incubating infection (could be viral, bacterial, protozoal) that will manifest over a few days into a full-blown problem, or even smolder for a week or two or three without symptoms until the infection lifts, and Thumper is back to normal. Or, Thumper has an undiagnosed deep, compensated problem that has been present for some time without symptoms (cardiac disease is notorious for this pattern); kidney, liver, neoplastic disease can also manifest themselves after decompensating.

An animal or man can compensate for a severe problem by biological adaptation mechanisms within a narrow range of conditions, an example would be high blood pressure in a kidney patient--the high blood pressure makes the kidney work better for a short time until the heart fails as a consequence of the work to maintain the high pressure. Decompensation can occur after a deeply stressing episode, and the disease is not immediately evident afterward, even with blood work, etc. Monitoring the patient over a two-four week period will help unveil any deep problem, and this could be as simple as monitoring weight gain/loss, appetite, sleep patterns,thirst, bowel and bladder habits, activity level, etc, or as involved as serial blood work, urinalysis, specific blood tests to target organ systems, etc.

Or Thumper may have been utterly terrified by the whole clipping/grooming process. Some dogs are sedated during the grooming, but this should have been mutually agreed upon, and ideally you could have stayed during the process. It can take a few days for some sedatives to totally dissipate. I believe that animals have emotions, but I am limited in how to divine them.

It is entirely possible for dogs to become more fearful as they age, and situations they once playfully accepted now cause significant distress.

Bottom line, continue to monitor Thumper via your veterinarian, ask the groomer in an open ended way if anything untoward happened and if sedation was used. Don't be antagonistic towards your groomer, you want answers so you can enact solutions.

If this is an emotional issue rather than a strict physical issue, then the tincture of time and a safe structured home will eventually reassure your pet.

Dr. Van Lienden

Dr. Raymond Van Lienden DVM
The Animal Clinic of Clifton
12702 Chapel Road, Clifton
Virginia, U.S.A. 20124
703-802-0490
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  #11  
Old April 20th, 2006, 09:16 AM
A biography A biography is offline
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First Off I want to say how happy I am to have found this forum, So far all my questions have been answered and now i know what to do with my Dog.

My problem is that i had gone away for a week left my Dog in the care of my Family. My Dog Nicodemus, needed to be groomed badly. So my family toke him to a Groomer's (i will neglect to say who) I called my family and they said he had a good time and everything was fine.

When i came back home, I too thought everything was fine Until later the next day I noticed My dog wasnt the behaving as his usually energetic self. He was always next to me and very sullen. He seems to always want to be on top of me, even as I am typing He's on my lap. And thats not usually the way he is.

Now i thought it was my absence from him, it could be part of it, That is till when i toke him to my grandmother's and she too noticed his less then energized playful self wasnt there. Even going to state "That's not my Nico." I dont know what went on at the groomer's but I am seriously depressed myself to that my dog isnt as free and happy as he used to. I am immediately going to the Vet this weekend to see if anything can be resolved. In the meantime the best I can do it be around him and make sure he's at his happiest.

Thank You, Dr. Van Lienden for your Answers and Input and to all those with the same problem, I wish you luck that all your pets return to their normal self.
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Old October 16th, 2008, 03:58 AM
lilm0nsta lilm0nsta is offline
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depressed puppy

hi there,

I am also very glad that I have found this forum too.

My partner and I have just moved house (we were living with two cats, two dogs - one of which which was ours and two horses) we are now living just us two and our dog (Coupe), however ever since we have moved he has changed!

he is very sulky and never wants to play, he is only 9mnths old and act as if he is 9 years old. He isnt himself anymore

Is he depressed??

He gets everything he wants, he sleeps with us, has the best care ever.. so much attention and lots of exercise.. we cant really afford to have another one as we are both at University... but I want my puppy (Coupe) to be happy!!

Please help me and my buddy Coupe
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