Is there a problem? The expert of the pet-friendly community “Khvost News”, the veterinarian of the Valta Zoobusiness Academy, Lyudmila Vashchenko, tells.
A dog may have a great appetite today, but not so much tomorrow. But if that’s the only change and the dog is fine, that’s perfectly fine.
Appetite depends on a huge number of factors: from a specific life stage to the weather outside the window. Many dogs, in principle, “little ones”, eat about 60% of the prescribed feeding rate – and this is also normal for them. Therefore, if your pet missed dinner today, you have no reason to panic. But if he has not touched the bowl for two days, then there really is a problem.
Top 5 Reasons Your Dog Doesn’t Eat Food
Reason #1. Malaise
The first thing a responsible owner needs to do is rule out health problems. We take the pet in an armful and go to the veterinarian. Even if refusing to eat is the only symptom, it’s never a bad idea to see a doctor for prevention.
A dog may refuse to eat during estrus, rehabilitation after surgery, during treatment, during a course of antibiotics.
If no health problems are found, we look for reasons further.
Reason #2. Diet changes
Perhaps the refusal to eat coincided with the change of food? The dog might not like the new taste or feel unwell because of the updated menu. Remember that you need to change the diet only according to indications and the transition should be carried out smoothly, within a week.
But what if you bought the same food as usual? And there were no changes in the diet?
In the case of unprofessional feed, the composition may change from party to party. This is the so-called “open formula” of the diet. When the source of protein is indicated in the composition of it and without percentage ratio. For example, “meat products”, “offal” or simply “meat”. What exactly is this meat, what quality and how much it is in the composition – you cannot know. Each new packaging of this feed is “a cat in a bag”, and the dog reacts accordingly.
Refusal of food in this case is not the main problem. Even if the dog feeds on such food for a long time and its condition is normal, sooner or later the “accumulation effect” will work. Poor nutrition will result in health problems, for example, food intolerance.
Common Reasons Why A Dog Stops Eating
Choose professional feed with a transparent composition for the dog. In the list of ingredients, the meat should be in the first place. You must see which meat and in what percentage was used in production.
And do not forget that the dog’s food should be at room temperature. Fresh drinking water should always be in the public domain.
Reason No3. Disorder of food behavior
This happens, if you overdo it with goodies, change the feed without indications or, contrary to the recommendations of veterinarian, feed the pet with products from the table. In the dog, the feeding mode is disturbed, it can abandon the usual food in order to care for the “yummy” more jaundice. The “pamper” of the pet in this way, the owner unconsciously harms his health.
Dogs and cats do not need a variety of nutrition, like people. Of course, it is also useful to pamper them with something special, but special goodies do this task perfectly. A healthy diet of a dog is a combination of professional feed and special treats for dogs, preferably one brand.
The reason No4. Inappropriate bowls
In the absence of appetite, bowls may be to blame. A new plastic bowl can smell unpleasantly. In the cracks of plastic, the remaining foods can accumulate and bacteria spread. Another option: you wash a bowl with detergents, the smell from which does not disappear for a long time. You may not feel any smell, but nothing will hide from the acute smell of dogs.
And it happens that a dog is simply not convenient to eat from a bowl. For example, if it glides on the floor and rummies, if it is too small or if you have to bend very much to it. Did you know that for dogs of large breeds of bowls it is recommended to install on a tripod?
The reason No5. Stress
Any (even minor in your opinion) changes in a dog’s life can plunge it into a state of stress. Perhaps you have moved or your neighbors are redecorating? The other day there was a noisy holiday and relatives came to you for a week? Or you have a second pet or even a child! Or maybe you make mistakes in raising a dog, punish it? Does she have few toys and activity in general?
All this and a hundred more reasons can discourage even the most optimistic dog, and refusal to eat will be a symptom of stress.
To restore your dog’s appetite and diet, it is helpful to enlist the support of a veterinarian or veterinary nutritionist. But experimenting on your own is not worth it. The longer a dog’s diet is left unbalanced, the more difficult it will be to balance the diet in the future and the greater the risk to its health.