The winter months can be dreary and dark, and we know that seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is a real thing in people because it may affect our well-being. But how does seasonal affective disorder affect pet health? This article explains more about that.
What is SAD?
Seasonal affective disorder is a depression type that is impacted by seasonal changes. It usually starts and ends around the same time yearly. The brain’s chemistry is possibly influenced by the weather and light cycles, so most of those who suffer from SAD experience symptoms through the autumn and winter months when there are shorter daylight hours.
Symptoms of seasonal affective disorder may include:
- Losing interest in activities usually enjoyed
- Feeling sad or down
- Having low energy
- Sleeping more
- Overeating problems
- Difficulty concentrating
- Feelings of hopelessness
Even though having some ups and downs is normal, these feelings can be detrimental to overall well-being when persistent.
Is Pet Health at Risk?
Our pets can experience the same seasonal changes and light exposure as we do, so it’s only natural to wonder where SAD can affect pet health. In addition, our pets can also be influenced by serotonin and melatonin levels, and the similarities may also set them up for seasonal depression. Plus, reduced sunlight exposure can impact pets in other ways, like hair growth. So, how can you support pet health in the darker months?
- Keep an exercise schedule for you and furry companion
- Practice excellent mental enrichment at home
- Attempt to spend more time outside in the sunshine
- Let the light in by investing in full spectrum lighting or opening blinds
If you have concerns regarding your pet’s health, contact Alexander Animal Hospital at (410) 777-8678 so we can help!
Support Your Pet’s Wellness at Alexander Animal Hospital
Alexander Animal Hospital is a full-service animal hospital located in Severna Park, Maryland, serving the Severna Park, Pasadena, and Arnold Areas. Our goal is educating clients on the needs of their pets and understanding the importance of individualized veterinary care in order to strengthen the human-animal bond between owners and their pets.
We understand you have a choice when deciding on the care for your pets, and we strive to provide you with unparalleled services including wellness exams, vaccines, lost pet microchip ID, dental care, surgical services, digital radiography, and in-hospital laboratory services and diagnostics. Other highlights of Alexander Animal Hospital are the separate cat and dog waiting and exam rooms, as well as after-hours on-call emergency services.