Dogs With Autism
Have you ever heard about dogs with autism? First of all, let’s see “what does autism mean?”. Autism in humans is when the nervous system is impacted by a certain condition leaving the human incapable of processing non-verbal cues and emotions. Autism has signs and symptoms that vary from person to person. But they share the same problems of showing repetitive behaviors and obsessive interests, communication issues, and being in social situations. On the other hand, dogs with those similar behaviors do not necessarily have autism, but rather called canine dysfunctional behavior.
Why Do Dogs Get Autism?
Canine dysfunctional behavior, or autism in dogs, is an idiopathic condition. In other words, dogs are born with the condition of showing such strange actions. Many studies have approved those normal dogs have certain mirror neurons in their brains that can help them learn social norms. However, dogs with canine dysfunctional behavior lack the neurons, which are responsible for developing the skills dogs need to create a social relationship. According to many researchers and dog owners’ views, dogs can face and react to the world just like humans with autism do.
How Can I Diagnose Autism in My Dog?
The most important things to know are dysfunctional behaviors in dogs are an inherited disorder and can be only diagnosed while the dog is a puppy. Also, that disorder does not have a spectrum as with human autism. There are many symptoms you can only observe that make you suspect that your dog has a dysfunctional behavior including:
- Showing the degree of lack of social interaction with humans and dogs.
- Expressing repetitive behaviors.
Indeed, the veterinarian is the one who can decide if your puppy has canine dysfunctional behavior or not. The vet should set out some behavioral and medical tests for your dog and he should be aware of some disorders that can make autism-like symptoms like canine anxiety. Another thing you have to note is many factors like vaccines or the environment cannot be responsible for your dog’s dysfunctional behavior. Please do not hesitate to call your local vet if you have any doubt that your puppy may have autism.
The Symptoms of Canine Dysfunctional Behavior
Dogs’ autism’s most common symptoms:
Autistic dogs usually do not care about much anything around them. As well as, they choose to rest in a comfortable, familiar area instead of playing outside with other pups, especially a high-energy breed.
Reacting Inappropriately to Stimuli:
A gentle pat on the head can make a dog with autism hyper-sensitive and even react aggressively or fearfully. They’ll often fall back to a familiar space like a closet or under the bed, trying to avoid situations or new environments.
Pups with autism would be obsessive teeth grinding, chasing their tails chronically, or swiveling a room over and over again.
Dogs with autism usually have a flat personality as they will avoid direct eye contact with both dogs and people. Also, they would not wag their tails when they are happy.
That would be noticed by ignoring your puppy any social interaction which is a contradictory nature of dogs, and not paying attention to you while playing or feeding time.
How Can You Treat Autism in Dogs?
Only a licensed vet can decide if any dog has any problems according to some diagnosis he did. As well as, the vet should set aside any health issues before looking at any underlying emotional conditions. After the vet diagnoses your canine with autism, he will offer some treatments mentioned below.
To be honest, no veterinarian can prescribe a single treatment for an Autistic dog. Instead, the vet may prescribe Prozac (Fluoxetine), which can provide relief for compulsive behaviors and can help curb symptoms. Prozac (Fluoxetine) is usually used to treat autism problems in humans and OCD. Also, other medications can be helpful such as positive reinforcement, offering a well-balanced diet, offering regular exercise, offering a stress-free space, and offering a secure, safe space.
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