Can my Pug get depressed? (+What can I do to help)


Author bio

Page last updated: 28/10/2022

Can my Pug get depressed? (+What can I do to help)

This article will discuss if your Pug can get depressed. It will show what are the main signs your puppy may be depressed, and what you can do in those situations.

Can my Pug get depressed? 

Yes, your Pug can get depressed. And in the same way as people, some things can affect their behavior, and how they feel. And it seems that your Pug can often feel depressed if they are experiencing changes. 

The changes that are being talked about here can be: a change to a new house, having a new partner in your house, or even the birth of a baby. Adding another pet to the house can also lead your Pug to become depressed

But it seems that the two most common factors that can lead your Pug to become depressed are the death of a pet they had as a companion or the death or separation of one of their owners.

Aside from that, dogs tend to be extremely sensitive to the emotions that are going on in the house. So be careful about the environment you live in. They can sense when you are feeling too sad, or maybe that you haven’t been able to give them enough attention, which can lead them to become depressed as well. 

It is known that dogs, similar to humans, are exposed to many neurochemicals, such as cortisol and adrenaline. These will impact their feeling depressed. 

And finally, your Pug may become depressed if there is some illness. Some health conditions can cause their behavior to change. So if you don’t feel there is a cause to why your Pug is depressed, you may want to take them to the vet, to get a check-up.

If you suspect your Pug may be feeling depressed, here are some signs you can look to make sure.

What signs that my Pug is depressed? 

If your Pug is depressed, it is most likely that it will start to show some changes in its behaviors. They will most likely become more withdrawn, and their activity levels will be lower than it was before. So try to compare if they are as active as they have always been, and if this change is not just a daily change.

You may try to take your Pug for a walk, which they used to love, but now they just lost all interest in it. This can be a sign that they are depressed. A big difference in dogs, when they are feeling depressed, is that their eating habits will change, and most commonly they will eat a lot less, or just stop it all.

A depressed Pug will spend most of his day sleeping, and when they are awake, you can sense that they are feeling bored, and sometimes even frustrated. A Pug that is depressed may begin to show signs of aggression. 

This can start to appear by them howling, and whining more often. They may also begin to bark more, or even become hyperactive at times. 

Once a Pug is depressed, it may lick itself a lot more as a way to soothe. This is especially true if they lick their paws too much. In the same way, flattening ears are a sign of a depressed dog. 

When depressed dog is around others, they may have trouble interacting with them. And their trained behavior in the house will most likely change. They can start to act differently from what they have been taught from the beginning.

If you feel your Pug’s behavior has changed in this sense, you may want to try to find ways to make them feel better. Let’s discuss what you can do in these situations.

Can my Pug get depressed? (+What can I do to help)

How can I help my Pug that is depressed? 

When your Pug is depressed, you can be worried and start to think about what can be done. So here are ways you can help.

Quality time 

The first way to help your Pug when they are feeling depressed is by spending more time with them. Take some time so you can both play together. Show them how much you love them, but don’t be overbearing. 

It is better to set some time daily to be with your Pug, than wanting to spend one whole day together to make up for other times. You need to let them deal with their emotions at their own pace.

Keep your Pug active 

As said before, dogs have many of the same neurochemicals as humans and being active, and outdoors will have the same benefits it would have on a human. Putting them out in the fresh air will drastically improve their mood.

But also remember that, in the same way as humans, you don’t just go and spend a whole day outside. Start with small steps. You can start with a short walk. As they are active, they will get a rush of serotonin and dopamine, which will improve their mood.

Keeping them active is important because when they don’t feel stimulated, they can easily become bored, and that can turn to depression very quickly.  


Dogs are social creatures, so you should try to make them socialize as much as possible as a way to prevent them from feeling depressed, and also of caring for their depression. You can set some time to take your dog to a park where there will be other dogs.

Or even arrange a meeting with friends that also have dogs so they can play together. Taking your dog to daycare is also a way of guaranteeing they will have some time to socialize. 

Have a routine

Setting a routine will help your Pug know what is coming their way each day, and that can help them recover. So you can try and take them for a walk every day around the same time, and give them food in the same way. A stable routine will most likely improve their mood.

Reward their positive behaviors

Although you may want to just cheer your Pug up by giving them treats, you should be careful. This may reinforce them to learn that negative emotions will be rewarded. Try to be caring and supportive, but not reinforce the sadness. Instead, reward them when they act positively.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ): Can my Pug get depressed? 

Can dogs have seasonal depression?

Yes, dogs, in a similar way as humans, can experience a condition that would feel like seasonal affective disorder. This can happen because dogs need to be outside and exercise, but during cold, winter days, this may be harder to do. 

The owner may find it difficult to take them out, and on those gloomy days can feel like exercising is not necessary. But your dog will most likely need it. And of course, each dog’s needs are different, but you should try to keep in mind the needs of your pup.

If they are always active, and ready to go outside, and socialize with other dogs, wintertime can be a lot harder for them. So you can try to find ways to keep them active, during that period, so they don’t get depressed.

Are there medications for dogs with depression?

Yes, there are medications for dogs with depression. But those should only be used if you feel that your dog hasn’t responded well to you trying to cheer them up. The medications used in dogs when they are depressed are the same ones used in humans.

They may be prescribed Paxil, Prozac, and even Zoloft. There is also a medication that was approved by the FDA, that helps to treat dogs with separation anxiety, which is called Clomicalm, and that can help a dog with depression. 

Most dogs will stay on medication for a period between 6 and 12 months. But the owners should avoid medication the best way they can, and try to help their dogs feel better.

Do dogs cry?

Dogs will have tears, their eyes produce water as a way to clear their eyes. But they don’t have emotional tears in the same way humans would have. But this doesn’t mean that they don’t show their emotions. 

When a dog is feeling sad, it will most likely show it by whimpering or winning. Hiding their face is also a strategy to let you know they are sad. So be aware of those signs, and don’t take into consideration the tears that come out of their eyes.

Why does my dog lick me? 

Dogs lick as a basic instinct. As dogs lick, their brain releases endorphins, causing them to feel good. As they lick people, they may do so as a way to express their emotions. If a dog is licking you there are some reasons.

When they are licking your hand, it means that they are trying to get a taste of everything you have explored on that day. They want to know where you have been, and what you have done. It is also a way for them to get that salty taste from your sweat, which they usually like.

Getting a sense of where you have been is also a reason why your dog may lick your face. They also want to taste what you have eaten, and finally, licking your face can also be a sign of affection, submission, and grooming. So it can be their way of showing how much they care for you.

Your dog may also lick your legs as you get out of the shower because they want to get the rest of the water that might be running down them. As for your ears, they may lick them because of the smell. 

Many dogs can often lick the person’s feet, and even though it can start because of the sweat, as you laugh because it tickles, it can give them a positive reinforcement to keep doing it.

Will my dog forget me?

No, although it is known that dogs will take only 70 seconds to forget what just happened, it is also known that they will not forget their owners even after a long time away. It is thought that this may be related to their highly sensitive sense of smell. So don’t worry about it, your dog won’t forget you.


This article centered on explaining if your Pug can get depressed, what are the signs of it, and what can cause them to feel depressed. The article also explained what are the best ways to help your Pug cope with depression.

If you have any questions or comments about this article, feel free to write them in the section below.