Do they know or is it my imagination?

@Modestah (11192)
United States
April 27, 2007 2:06pm CST
If you read my other discussion you are aware that we lost one of our beloved dogs recently. We also have her mother. She seems so mopey since her daughter died... do dogs get depressed or is it my imagination placing human emotions onto a pet? When we took our walk last night, Bridge turned towards the house and looked around, her nose up in the air trying to catch the scent of something...I wondered if she was trying to locate her baby (baby was 8.5 years old, so not a pup at all). When we got in the house she curled herself up in Mitts' bed, snuggling her nose into her blankie. Do dogs miss their dog companions, do they understand death at all - should we have shown her Mitts' body for closure? Does she worry that we will "get rid of" her as well? Sometimes she just sits and whimpers. Is she sad? What can I do for my precious pet to alleviate her pains - if dogs can have emotional pains, that is?
6 people like this
7 responses
• United States
27 Apr 07
It would be impossible to really know if dogs suffer loss. Of course they don't do it like we do, but I'm sure your dog can sense that somethings wrong. More importantly, dog's emotions feed off of their owners. If your dog can sense that something's wrong, then she's going to be affected as well. Try going on with your normal routine. Don't dote on the dog as this will only cause behavioral issues down the line. Things are likely to return to normal in a couple of days as long as you stay calm and collected.
2 people like this
@Modestah (11192)
• United States
27 Apr 07
thank you for the sound and thoughtful advice, especially the part about not doting on her, as that is exactly what I am compelled to be doing. Extra pampering here and there - maybe I am trying to lick my own wounds in so doing? Bridge is 13 years old and the sweetest creature.
2 people like this
@Modestah (11192)
• United States
1 Mar 08
thank you again +
• Canada
27 Apr 07
well all i can say is get a new dog so your dog can play with it it might be weird with it but i think it will work
• United States
27 Apr 07
The adage "fighting fire with fire" comes to mind. You should never get a dog to solve a problem you have with an existing dog. You run a better chance of having two problems instead of one solution.
2 people like this
• United States
28 Apr 07
I do believe that dogs have feelings. Watch them around us and how dedicated to us they are. They feel love for us as we do for them. I believe she is grieving for her daughter. Just as people have to be allowed the greiving process so should dogs be allowed the same thing. Just give her a lot of love and attention and let her know that she is very important to you. It might have helped if you had showed her Mitts body so she could have had closure. But when she gets sad just give her attention.
1 person likes this
• Nigeria
29 Apr 07
Dogs are just like we human, i think they have a sense of loss also. Its difficult to prove but then i still think they react to whats happening around their surroundings. When my dog gave birth and we took the puppies out to the vet, she started barking absurdly trying to follow us but when we came back she was excited and started jumping around, pulling all the puppies close to her and guarding them. So i really think they feel it when they lose a co-dog or another pet close to them
• Canada
28 Apr 07
yes dogs will pine for their companion and it doesn't matter what you do... except maybe get another one that she might like just as much
• China
28 Apr 07
In my opinion,animals also have emotion just like we humans do.
@vmoore709 (1102)
• United States
28 Apr 07
She knows. She may not know that Mitts passed, but she knows she's gone. We had two dogs. One passed a few months ago (she was 15). The other became really depressed (sitting by the door waiting for her, looking for her outside, not eating...). He has finally snapped out of it, but it took a while. Just give her time just like you would expect if one of your friends passed. Be sure to show her as much love as you can during this time.