Autism or autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a range of conditions. People with autism face difficulties with social skills, repetitive behaviors, speech, and communication. In human society, 1 out of 59 children has autism. But, can dogs have autism?
Autism is not a disease develop over time. The autistic dog was born with it. It is in their genes. There is no cure for autism. But, there are methods to help them to live a healthy life.
Can dogs have autism? Yes, studies show that human dogs also can have autism.
Symptoms of autism
Since autism is a genetic disorder, autistic dogs will show symptoms from their childhood. It is easy to identify autistic dogs because they show very unusual behaviors.
Let’s figure out the most common symptoms of autism.
Poor social connections in dogs with autism
Autistic dogs may have problems interacting with other dogs. In dog communities, they will try to be alone. Also, in communities, it will not try to play with other dogs.
You will notice that your dog is much different than other dogs. He will not commit to doing day to day things like playing with toys, barking, or even taking a walk around.
All the time, it will try to stay at someplace doing nothing.
Also, some autistic dogs have emotional disorders. They will not show emotions like happiness or anger.
Behavior problems in dogs with autism
Dogs with autism display very unusual behaviors. They are more likely to avoid things and humans’. Also, they will stay still or run without reason. Autistic dogs can be afraid of things. So, when they see something new, they will try to avoid them. If your dog is rejecting new toys or people that may be a sign of autism.
Unlike normal dogs, autistic dogs get scared easily. Even a toy can scare them. So, to avoid the scary feeling, they will always try to hide and be alone. If your dog is unusually afraid of objects or people, that may be a sign.
Also, some autistic dogs have obsessive-compulsive disorder or OCD. They will expect everything to be perfect. If you miss talking to him once, he will be sad about it. Or if you reduce the food amount from a little, that will make him the saddest dog on earth.
Autistic dogs feel everything in a different way. They will not be able to understand your feelings. When you are crying, normal dogs know that you are sad. So it will come to you to help reduce your pain. But, an Autistic dog may not feel it that way. It is a real challenge for them to feel.
Can a dog have downs syndrome?
Some dogs with downs syndrome also are recognized with autistic disorder. Downs syndrome is also a genetic disease and has no cure. The dog will show the same symptoms if it has both downs syndrome and autism.
Like in humans, downs syndrome can cause many complications in dogs. Some complications can be fatal. Dogs with downs syndrome have more chances of developing heart diseases, cancers, and diabetes.
The symptoms include,
- Abnormal facial features – The dog will have unusual features in the face. It will have A dwarf-like look, short neck, flat face, and ears slanted upwards.
- Hearing problems – Your dog will have hearing problems. It will take more time to react to a command. Also, you will have to shout loud to call it.
- Cloudiness in eyes – Eye problems are very common in the dog with downs syndrome. So, look for cloudiness developing in one or both eyes.
- Behavior – Think about a kid with down syndrome. They all have behavior problems. It will be a really difficult thing to feed them and to control them. Likewise, the dogs will also have the same traits if effected with downs syndrome.
- Hard to control bladder -The dog will piss even inside the house. Because it can’t control its bladder, also, unexpected urination will take place.