Experts warn that all the time you spend staring at your phone can make your dog feel lonely, isolated—and depressed.
It’s time to break that habit of constantly scrolling through social media on your cell phone—for a heartbreaking reason that goes beyond human emotions.
Dogs may feel depressed and isolated when their owners are more interested in looking at their phones than giving their canine companions attention, one expert says.
Why Staring at Your Phone Makes Your Dog Sad
Dogs need, “constant feedback and interaction,” and are hard-wired to please people, veterinary surgeon Iain Booth, founder of VetUK, told Metro.co.uk.
Your dog, a social creature, sees you as a leader of the pack—a role that involves feeding it, instructing it on where to go, and offering other important guidance.
Being too attached to your cell phone—even because you are looking at or posting pictures of your pet—can cause this bond to break down and your pet can be confused and upset. This can then lead to detachment and behavioral issues.
While some dogs may wait patiently for their masters to finish scrolling through social media feeds, others may start acting out and causing trouble to get attention.
Your dog may even turn to other people or dogs for attention instead.
Signs your dog is struggling with depression can include:
• Showing a lack of interest in food
• Sleeping more
• Hiding from you
• Avoiding you
• Excessively licking
• “Chewing their paws” to find comfort.
Cats are more independent creatures and can be less affected by a cell phone obsession than dogs. However, they can still feel neglected when trying to paw or nuzzle for attention and their owners brush them off to stare at smartphones.
Making sure to carve out quality time for pets—that is cellphone free–can help you and your pet preserve your bond and avoid the downfalls of cell phone addiction.
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