Back to News

Published: Apr 01, 2011

Mental illness among pets is a growing concern. While quirky pet behavior is common among the animals we love, there are some telltale signs that an animal may have deeper mental issues, according to

Dog owners should keep an eye out for obsessive behaviors. Canines who seem unable to stop licking, chewing, pacing or snapping their teeth may be feeling overly anxious. If a dog shows any significant change in their behavior or personality, it's best to take them to a veterinarian as soon as possible.

Cats who display extreme aggression may be suffering from a mental illness. Other symptoms of psychological problems in felines include lethargy, lack of appetite or cat spraying. These traits should be consistent - cats appetites are prone to mild changes day to day, and many enjoy spending an occasional lazy day napping.

Bird owners should be cautious if they notice their feathered friend pulling out their feathers or biting themselves, as these habits are indicative of anxiety.

According to WebMD, dogs are prone to suffer from sadness or depression during times of change, such as an alteration in their owner's work schedule or a move from one home to another.