It’s not unusual for a dog to go through periods where it doesn’t seem interested in meals. As long as you see your dog engaged in other daily activities, this can signify that your dog is experiencing some degree of appetite or digestive issues. But it’s important to remember that there are countless reasons your dog might be refusing food, and you must always keep an eye out for them. Here are some of the most common reasons why your dog isn’t eating and what you can do about it.
1. Your Dog is Stressed
Dogs get stressed out, too, just like humans. If your dog is experiencing many changes in its life, whether related to your household, family situation, or owner’s work schedule, it may stop eating. The change may be small, but if it repeatedly occurs over time, it can put a lot of pressure on your dog and cause it to refuse to eat.
What To Do
The best way to deal with this is to figure out what’s causing stress on your dog and deal with it. For example, breaking this transition phase over multiple meals is best if you’re moving into a new house. You should also schedule some playtime with your dog daily to make sure it doesn’t feel stressed in the first place.
2. Your Dog is Ill or Suffering from Pain
Like humans, dogs can get diseases that affect their appetite. If they’re suffering from a cold or the flu, they won’t be in the mood to eat food. Similarly, if your dog is in pain because of an injury or disease, it may not be interested in eating.
What To Do
Take your dog to a veterinarian to figure out what’s wrong with it. The vet should be able to diagnose the condition and give you some options on how to deal with it. Depending on the severity of the disease, some medicines may help your dog feel better and start eating again.
3. Your Dog is a Picky Eater
Not all dogs are created equal when it comes to their eating habits. Some dogs prefer a certain type of food or have specific demands when it comes to how food is served. Dogs with very strong personalities may refuse food from a bowl and expect it to be served another way, like on plates or even off the floor. Dogs with sensitive stomachs will refuse foods that give them an upset stomach.
What To Do
The best way to deal with this is to routinely monitor their meal times and take note of what foods they actually like. If it doesn’t like the taste of its current food, try switching to a different flavor or brand until you find one more appealing to your dog. If it has an upset stomach, It may be time to ask your vet for advice on finding a new brand of food or medicine. You can also talk to your vet for any food recommendations for your specific dog breed.
4. Your Dog is Suffering from Allergies
If your dog is allergic to something, it can affect its appetite. If you notice your dog seems to be having an allergy attack, it may be because of the food you’re serving. Even foods that are perfectly safe for your dog may be allergic to it.
What To Do
If your dog seems to be having an allergy attack, you can try giving it some allergy medicine. If the symptoms do not subside, you should consider getting your dog tested for allergies to food additives and ingredients to find the best dog food for health and nutritional benefits.
5. Dental Problems
If your dog isn’t eating, it may have a problem with its teeth. If its teeth are infected, it may not be interested in eating food because of the pain. And if a tooth is removed, it may not want to eat because it will hurt to chew.
What To Do
If either of these is the case, you should take your dog to a veterinarian as soon as possible. The vet will examine its mouth and teeth to determine what’s wrong with them and what should be done.
Start taking note of when your dog’s appetite took a turn. Monitor them daily and if you notice it is not getting back to normal make sure to talk to your dog’s veterinarian. They will assess them and let you know exactly what steps you should take next in order to solve the issue. If it’s not a medical problem, there could be something wrong in its environment affecting it. It is true, that sometimes dogs with more stubborn personalities do this as a form of attention, but to be on the safe side you should always consult their vet.