Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Can Dogs Commit Suicide?

Recently I have been told a story about a dog who had just died. This dog often barks at everyone that passes by and is a bit aggressive to people and towards other dogs, so the owner decided to put him on a leash. The dog's mate on the other hand, isn't wearing a leash because it was not as aggressive as he is.

Being that she is free to roam around, other dogs also follow her around and try to mate with her. Apparently this behavior angered the dog on the leash, which caused him to be depressed in return. A few days later, they found the dog is dead with his leash coiled around his neck. The dog owner and the neighbors had speculated that the dog most likely killed itself because of jealousy and depression. Question is, can dogs commit suicide. Although there are a lot of varying arguments and opinions, there are a few points that you have to consider when discussing this topic.

Dog's Consciousness of Life and Death

Humans who attempt to commit suicide are aware of what life and death entails. That's why they opt to kill themselves because their consciousness tells them that death is an easier answer or an easy way out than having to suffer and agonize with the struggles and problems of life. Although it is true, based on scientific fact and discovery, that dogs can have a variety of emotions such as happiness, sadness, anxiety and even depression, what is also needed to be considered is the dog's mental awareness of the concept of death. Even with a wide spectrum of emotions, a dog's mental function, if compared to a human, is that of a two or three year old child. Children of that age do not have the consciousness or awareness of life and death, and there is no evidence that dogs have it either.

Others argue that if dogs don't have the awareness of life and death, then why is it when they feel lonely or depressed they deliberately stop eating, and they become disconnected with things around them? You also have to put in mind that humans who also feel loneliness and depression, knowingly or unknowingly disconnect themselves from the world. They are so consumed by what they are feeling, but that doesn't mean that everyone who feels depression is deliberately disconnecting themselves from their surroundings because they are attempting to commit suicide.

Another factor that you have to consider is that dogs who are disconnected with their surroundings due to depression, unknowingly develops a weakening of their strength and energy. Because of this they may not be fully aware of their actions and unconsciously just waste away.

Some people, especially pet owners that are mourning, have a hard time accepting and understanding the reason or cause of their beloved pet's death. Regardless if it was an act of suicide or not, what pet owners must come to understand is that the death of a loved one, even a pet, is a part of life. We can mourn, and ponder as to why it happened, but we need to come to terms with his death. We also need to realize that the memories of our pet does not die with them, but continues to live on once you choose to accept what had happened and learn to be happy with the times and memories that your pet has left with you.

Christina Graham has been a vetdrinarian surgery tech and/or dog groomer for over 15 years. And in those years has gained an invaluable knowledge regarding all aspects of dogs. That's why she created The Daily Pooch, a daily blog dedicated to dog lovers. She posts regular updates on all aspects of your dog's life from training to health and nutrition and everything in between. Head over to TheDailyPooch.com to see what it's all about.

No comments:

Post a Comment