Being a pet owner is not an easy job. You’re practically raising a small addition to your family—one that can’t speak to you—and it’s not always possible to give them the same energy they require.

Your pet will probably let you know if they’re craving your attention and haven’t been getting enough of it. Keep an eye out for the following behaviors to discern whether they require more love and affection:

1. They’re more lethargic and sleeping a lot

Dogs are generally energetic creatures. They love running, jumping, hopping up and down, and exploring everything they can. They express their affection and love by jumping at you—but you probably already knew that. If you notice your fur baby has been lazier than usual, lounging around, not interacting much, spending a lot of time sleeping, they’re probably in need of some loving. They might be withdrawing and sleeping the day away because they’re not getting enough playtime with you.

2. Eating too much or not at all

Food is not a substitute for love, and this is something pet owners often forget. If you’re guilty of neglecting your pet and compensate by feeding them, not only will they gain weight but they’ll also begin to associate food with attention.

sad puppy

On the other hand, if they’ve lost their appetite and are unable to eat altogether, it’s also a cause for alarm. Losing their appetite is a response to emotional or physical distress, so if you notice your dog isn’t eating at all, take them to the vet or speak to their caregiver.

3. Acting out and behaving erratically

Like an errant child, an errant dog is also likely to be acting out because of a lack of attention. If they’re behaving out of character, tearing up sheets, chewing up shoes, pooping where they’re not meant to, barking or being hyper, they’re doing all this to get your attention. Don’t react. Instead, take time out to hang out with them, comfort them, and be gentle.

sad dog

4. They’re depressed

The most significant indicator is your dog’s depression. Like humans, animals are also incredibly perceptive, sensitive, and feel a wide range of emotions, including loneliness. Being left alone for the greater part of the day, general lack of attention and affection can all lead them to be depressed.

Life gets in the way; work is tiring; maybe your human children are very demanding; perhaps you haven’t’ been around much. It’s okay if you’ve been unable to make time for it doesn’t make you a bad dog-mom or dog-dad. Spend time with your furry friend and treat them to cheer them up. If they’re spending their days by themselves, do what’s right for them and put them in a safe, warm environment like our doggie daycare in Indio, CA, where they’ll be surrounded by other dogs and certified caregivers. We offer some of the best dog boarding and daycare services in the area so you can contact us to learn more.