What to do if your dog won’t eat?

April 13, 2012

Does your dog not seem interested in food? Is this a recent thing or has your dog always been a finicky eater? When your dog doesn’t seem interested in food it can be very disturbing and make you worry that there is something serious going on. Before you get too worried there are some things to think about and rule out.

The first thing you should do when your dog won’t eat is rule out any medical problems. When your dog won’t eat, especially if this is a new thing, it could very well be a medical problem. Your vet may be able to do some simple blood tests on your dog and determine if there is anything to be worried about. You may also want to have your dogs teeth checked, because just like people, when a dogs mouth hurts it isn’t going to want to eat.

Next, you should think about your dogs eating habits. For instance, it may seem like your dog isn’t eating but when you look closer you may realize that your dog is getting a lot of treats or table scraps, which is not living him or her as hungry as usual. Many pet owners find that when they really look closely at their pets eating habits that they are eating, just not at meal times.

If you find that your dog is eating but just not eating the right things at the right time, now is the time to get them on more of a feeding routine. Feed your dog on a regular schedule and you’ll find that they want to eat more and more regularly. When you feed your dog on schedule you will be better able to gauge whether your dog is not eating or just not eating on a regular schedule.

Look at what you are feeding your dog. Did you start feeding your dog a new food? Have their dietary needs changed? Many times dogs will stop eating well after their foods have been changed or as they age and their dietary needs change a bit. When you look at their diet you may see that they just aren’t responding well to a new food. Sometimes just turning back to their new food will allow them to start eating again. If they still refuse to eat, you may want to see your vet to see if they can recommend how to choose a food and feed your dog food that it will eat.

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