Is your dog’s appetite not what it used to be? Ruh-roh! It’s important that your pup is eating the right amount, otherwise they won’t get enough calories, vitamins, and nutrients and could become underweight or fall ill.

There are a number of possible culprits that could be behind your pup’s refusal to eat, ranging from the not-so-serious to the serious.

To get your pooch to start scarfing down their dinner again you need to first figure out why your dog isn’t interested in mealtime.

Reasons your dog might not be eating

Dental issues

When you have a sensitive tooth, eating can be painful, and the same goes for your dog. Your pup could easily have a loose or broken tooth, or even a degree of dental disease. These can be painful and serious if they are left untreated. An exam by your veterinarian will determine if your doggo needs some dental work.

Illness

If your dog isn’t in the mood for food one morning or evening, it could be something as simple as a stomach ache, but if it’s a regular occurrence it could indicate a more serious illness and you should consult your Veterinarian to ensure your pet doesn’t have a more serious issue.

Traveling and new surroundings

As stressful as being away from home can be for humans, it can be even more stressful for dogs because they don’t necessarily understand what’s happening. A lot of dogs love car rides and sniffing around new spaces, but some might get nervous when they realize all their toys and the couch they love to roll around on aren’t there. Some might even suffer from motion sickness when in a vehicle, which can put a damper on anyone’s appetite. A temporary loss of appetite isn’t uncommon in stressed out pups, and if travel or new surroundings is the culprit, it could last until your pooch is feeling comfortable and secure again. You can also check with your Veterinarian about some of the phermone products that are available to help manage stress and anxiety in our pets.

Plain old pickiness

Some dogs are finicky — maybe they love kibble but hate wet food, or prefer ingredients like turkey and chicken over beef. They may also not like the bowl you are using or where they are being fed. Try changing some of these things and see if that helps.  Also, for dogs eating dry food, a little wet food or warm water mixed into the kibble can help to bring back their appetite and meal enjoyment!

Overfeeding

It’s entirely possible you’re filling your dog’s bowl a tad too much. While your dog is eating the right amount, they’re leaving food behind and making it look like they’re not finishing. Make sure you’re giving your dog the correct amount of food to maintain  their ideal body weight. Puppo will provide you a custom feeding guideline to match your dog’s weight and activity level right on the bag. If you find that your dog needs a little more or less to maintain their ideal weight, let us know and we can adjust it!

Vaccinations

Vaccinations, while helpful and super necessary, can have some temporary side effects on your pooch, such as fever, diarrhea, and loss of appetite. If you notice these shortly after your dog’s been vaccinated, keep an eye on them to make sure it doesn’t become a long-term problem.

What to do when your dog won’t eat

If your dog’s lack of appetite persists, it’s time for a visit to the vet. A vet can help you determine which of the above issues might be causing your pooch to turn up their snout at their dinner and how to go about fixing it.

If the issue isn’t medical, here are a number of things you can try to get your dog eating again:

Fewer treats

If you eat a lot of snacks throughout the day, there’s a good chance you won’t be that hungry when you sit down for a meal. The same goes for dogs, so cut back on the treats. Treats aren’t complete and balanced so eating less treats will help ensure they get all the nutrition they need.

Walks before mealtime

This will use up some of your dog’s energy and make them hungrier just before they eat.

Regular feedings

Dogs like a schedule! So try to feed them at the same times everyday so they know when they are expected to eat. This will not only promote a healthy weight, but it’ll help you get a good bathroom schedule going for your pup and also make it easier to keep track of how much they’re eating.

Try out a new food

The solution to getting your puppo to eat again could be as simple as giving them a different food formula. Try a personalized nutrition plan, like the ones offered by Puppo. After you fill out a questionnaire about your pooch, Puppo will choose a formula aimed at their specific needs that’s sure to get them eating again in no time.