Wednesday, April 8, 2009

OCD & Your Pet Can Have it Too

A friend of mine, Stella, responded to my last blog, OCD & Your Vinyl Floor, and raised a very good point. Stella wondered that if environmental pollutants can cause OCD in children, what about our pets? I do believe that OCD is not just a human disorder and that animals also suffer from it. I think the triggers are stress and the environment. Today I will be writing about dogs, but OCD can affect cats and other pets as well.

In looking around the Internet, I found this:

” If you have ever wondered just why your dog will not stop barking, even when you see nothing to bark about, your dog could very well be suffering from OCD tendencies. Contrary to what was once believed, canines do suffer from forms of OCD disorders. The most common include excessive barking and compulsive uncontrolled licking and it most commonly occurs in larger breed dogs. Dogs that have OCD tendencies have both a genetic predisposition and environmental stresses that trigger the behavior.

OCD behaviors in canines resembles that of humans in that dogs demonstrate repetitive behaviors, apparently without being able to control it. The onset can be both gradual and sudden, depending on what triggered the behavior. Moreover, what behaviors are demonstrated depends on what type of breed the dog is. It is most common for longhaired dogs to over groom themselves. Dogs raised for herding may chase and hoard all of the time and predatory breeds such as a Doberman or rot may bite."
To read the full article, go to:

I also read that boredom is also a trigger for OCD in animals and shows up as compulsive barking, digging, running in patterns and tail chasing. The best remedy is tiring out your pet by doing safe and fun things – walks, fetch, etc. This also helps obesity.
"A tired dog is a content dog, and not a compulsive pet. Get out and play more!”

Also, “Compulsive Disorders can also be part of your dog's genetic make-up. Certain breeds are pre-disposed to these behaviors, such as Dobermans, who suck on their skin, German Shepherds, who chase their own tails, and English Bull Terriers, who have the odd habit of sticking their heads underneath objects and freezing in place.”
To read the complete article, go to:

I also found out that most dogs with OCD were obtained from breeders. I also read something that said plastic water bowls can cause OCD in pets. Also, there was some really scary stuff I read on about chemical exposure and pets’ health. I found this to be interesting also:

In my opinion, what causes mental and physical problems in people also causes them in our pets. Thanks Stella, for making us aware.

No comments: