Your dog needs exercise to stay alert and healthy, and to keep his body working properly. If he’s looking and acting lethargic, and it’s not because he’s just come back from a two hour run and is happily worn out, it may just be that he’s bored stiff. Or perhaps he’s simply getting on a bit in years.
Has he put on a lot of weight? He won’t feel like dashing around with a lot of extra poundage, and it’s a clear signal that he’s not getting the exercise he needs to burn off the calories he’s eating every day. What do you feed him? Is what he eats healthy and wholesome, and is the dog food he has based mainly on cereals or is he getting the right amount of meat protein he needs?
A dog left on his own all day may become depressed; perhaps he feels he’s been sidelined for a new baby, or you’ve not had enough quality time with him for a while. He’s a pack animal. He thrives on company, and if he’s depressed about being on his own, or he’s not getting enough exercise or stimulation he’s going to get sad, lazy, fat and bored. And you can’t let that happen to your best friend.
Just stepping up his daily exercise and spending more time with him will perk him up and he’ll soon be a bouncing dog again. Remember too, that If he is up to date with his annual vaccinations, has regular check ups with the vet, and you give him a good check over once a week, he’s less likely to have any health problem that can’t be nipped in the bud as soon as it appears.
For that reason, a usually active and happy dog that suddenly appears lethargic for no reason needs checking out as soon as possible as there are a number of illnesses and conditions that could be making him feel so listless. Maybe his eyes look dull, or he’s been passing water either less or more frequently. Perhaps his behavior and mood has suddenly changed or he has diarrhea or vomiting that doesn’t clear up overnight.
Take him off to the vet for a more thorough examination – is there any infection anywhere or does he have a fever? Do his eyes look dull or bright? Has be been passing urine without any problems? Your vet will be able to do some blood tests to check for any signs of disease and will be able to pick up any signs of thyroid disease, or a virus. Perhaps he’s developing diabetes, or a urinary tract infection, or is having an allergic reaction to parasites he’s picked up such as worms or ticks.
Problems picked up early mean he’s more likely to come through it quickly – and that’s all it takes – a loving and watchful eye on your dog to make sure he is healthy, and immediate care and attention if he looks off color.