How Dogs Cry for Help: Spot the Signs of a Dog in Distress

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Dogs are known as man's best friend for a reason. They are loyal, loving, and always there for us when we need them. But did you know that dogs can also cry for help? It's true! Dogs cry for help when they're in pain, or in distress.

In this blog post, we will discuss nine signs of a dog in distress and how to help them.


Signs of how do dogs cry for help


Eating or drinking differently


One way that dogs cry for help is by eating or drinking differently.

If your dog is suddenly not interested in their food or water, this could be a sign that something is wrong.

They may also vomit more frequently than normal or have diarrhea.

If you notice any of these changes in your dog's eating habits, it's important to take them to the vet right away.


Sleeping pattern change


Another way dogs cry for help is by sleeping more or less than usual.

If your dog is sleeping a lot more than normal, it could be a sign of depression. On the other hand, if they're having trouble sleeping, it could be a sign of anxiety.

If you notice any changes in your dog's sleeping habits, it's important to consult with a veterinarian.


Acting out of character


If your dog is usually friendly but starts growling or biting at people, it could be a sign that they're feeling scared or threatened.

Likewise, if your normally calm and docile dog starts acting restless and agitated, this could also be a sign that something is wrong.

If you notice any changes in your dog's behavior, it's important to get them help right away - sudden behavioral changes can indicate brain trauma, or pain and internal injuries. (source)


Digging


Dogs also cry for help by digging more or less than usual.

If you notice your dog is digging more than normal, it could be a sign that they're bored, anxious, or feeling trapped.

If you notice any changes in your dog's digging habits, have a look around - they could be telling you that they're bored and need mental stimulation.

However, there are some dogs that dig when they're anxious and feeling boxed in - this is more commonly seen in rescued dogs, perhaps due to their prior life in the past, where fight or flight was how they survived stressful situations (source)


Chewing


Dogs sometimes cry for help by chewing.

This is especially true if your dog was never a chewer in the first place - if you notice your dog is chewing more than normal, it could be a sign that they're bored, anxious, or feeling trapped.

If you notice any changes in your dog's chewing habits, you can have a look at home - have they chewed and destroyed all their toys, and they're just looking for something to do?

A lot of us work from home and understandably, you may not have the whole period to play with them (though I know we wish we do).

If they seem bored, you could perhaps get a toy that helps stimulate their thinking and brain instead - this works very well for smarter dogs like the Border Collie.


Excessive licking


Dogs sometimes cry for help by licking excessively. If you notice your dog is licking more than normal, it could be a sign that they're anxious or feeling stressed.

If you notice any changes in your dog's licking habits, they may also be telling you that their skin itches - it could potentially be due to skin infections, or other skin disorders.


Urinating or defecating indoors


One of the most serious signs of how dogs cry for help is when they start urinating or defecating indoors. This can be a sign of many different problems, including anxiety, fear, and depression.

If you notice your dog is urinating or defecating indoors, it's important to get them help right away.


Whining or crying more than usual


Another sign of how dogs cry for help is when they start whining or crying more than usual. This can be a sign of many different problems, including anxiety, fear, and depression.

If you notice your dog is whining or crying more than usual, it's important to get them help right away. Thanks for reading!

These are just a few of the ways dogs cry for help. If you notice any changes in your dog's behavior, it's important to get them help right away. 


Barking or howling more than usual


The last sign of how dogs cry for help is when they start barking or howling more than usual.

This can be a sign of many different problems, including anxiety, fear, and depression.

If you notice your dog is barking or howling more than usual, you might need to check your surroundings. Typically dogs bark when they sense danger around, or if they want your attention.

in the case for danger, your dog is telling you that there may be danger, and you should probably check it out.

It might not actually be a danger, but your dog just wants to keep you safe. Remove the offending object if possible, and set your dog's mind at ease 🙂


However sometimes, if it's for attention, then it becomes a habit for them, and you'll need to train them to stop barking, especially if you believe it's attention seeking.


Changes in attitude and posture


Dogs sometimes cry for help by changes in attitude and posture. If you notice your dog is hunched over, has their tail between their legs, or is avoiding eye contact, it could be a sign that they're feeling scared or threatened.

Likewise, if your dog starts to act aggressively for no reason, this could also be a sign that something is wrong, similarly to your dog acting out of character.


Possible ways to help your dog


When dogs cry for help, we obviously want to help them get rid of whatever is stressing them out.

Most of the time, if it's events that you know of (for example, a family member passing away), the grieving process is similar to people - it will take time for them to heal and get used to the family member not being there anymore.

Sometimes, an addition of a family member, like another dog, can cause your dogs to act out more.

This could be due to them receiving less attention, jealousy or any of the like (yes, dogs can get jealous too!)


For events that are obvious, it's simply a matter of them getting used to it.

However, when your dogs cry for help in the ways above with not obvious trigger, it may be time to visit the vet, or a dog behaviorist.

They can help shed some light on why your dog may be acting out - sometimes helping us see a new perspective and how we can help ease your dogs out of that situation, or get used to it.

Of course, they could also be sick or injured internally, and the vet is clearly the best option to help examine your dog.

By understanding why your dog is crying, you can better help them and provide the necessary support they need to feel better.



about the author

Frank Harrigan

Frank loves tacos and dogs - the good, bad and ugly sides of dog ownership.


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