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Depression in West Highland Terriers

West highland white terriers, better known as Westies, are generally a very active and curious breed of dog. Depression in Westies is unusual and can indicate an illness.

Identification

Symptoms of depression in Westies can differ from dog to dog. Some dogs may just curl up in their beds and not want to come out, while others show no interest in food, toys or squirrels running past their noses.

Significance

Although some breeds of dog, like the Cavalier King Charles spaniel or the bulldog, are usually sedentary, the Westie is normally a dog with high energy and wants to be the centre of everything going on. Depressed Wesites need a vet visit as soon as possible.

Health Causes

Health problems that Westies are specifically prone to that may have depression as a symptom include epilepsy, diabetes, liver problems, white shaker dog syndrome and a brain condition called lysomal storage diseases.

Other Causes

Other causes of depression in Westies include side effects from a new medication, malnutrition and a sudden life change, such as the death of an owner. Westies that bond strongly with people may act depressed if their owners are depressed.

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About the Author

Rena Sherwood is a writer and Peter Gabriel fan who has lived in America and England. She has studied animals most of her life through direct observation and maintaining a personal library about pets. She has earned an associate degree in liberal arts from Delaware County Community College and a bachelor's degree in English from Millersville University.