It seems so unlikely that dogs can be fussy eaters. If the zillion videos online that showcase dogs’ excitement at meal times are any indication, it would seem that meal times are dogs’ favourite times of the day and that food is something that they get super excited about. So, if your doggie hates meal times and avoids food, it can be confusing as well as frustrating.
Let’s look at some of the reasons why your dog may be a fussy eater. But before we do that, let’s be sure that this is a consistent and ongoing issue. Skipping a meal or two once in a while is not cause to hit the panic button. Okay, let’s go….
Does your doggo get any snack in-between their meals? Even if you may not be giving snacks yourself, it doesn’t mean that your dog hasn’t found a way to get fed. Check with your family members, neighbours, etc. to find out if they have been giving in to your dog’s begging for food. Also, check rubbish bins in your vicinity to make sure your dog hasn’t been getting into them. If your dog has found a way to get snacks of his choice in between meals, that could be one reason they are not interested in the food you serve them.
Are you in the habit of giving your dog treats for good behaviour and obedience? If yes, that could be one of the reasons that your dog just isn’t hungry at meal times. Multiple treats in a day can add up, and more so if given by multiple people, especially in the case of small dogs. If they are munching on treats all day, it could lead to loss of appetite at meal times.
Do your dogs get scraps of your food from you or your family? Sharing your food with your dog may make them happy in the moment, but it does not necessarily mean that it is good for them. And it is certainly not helpful if they are already full on your food when you are trying to get them to eat theirs.
Dogs are creatures of habit. They wake up around the same time every day, they walk at their fixed hour, they snooze during the day at about the same time. They also need to get their food at the same time every day. If they do not have a fixed routine for their meal times, it is possible that they are just not hungry at the time you are trying to feed them.
Not only do dogs like to eat at the same time, they also like to eat in the same spot everyday. It is also important that they feel safe and comfortable in the spot and that they are not disturbed while they are eating. If the spot where you give them their food changes regularly, it is possible that they do not feel safe or comfortable eating in that spot, and hence avoid eating altogether.
Mental health in dogs is just as important as it is in human beings. If your dog is not getting enough activity, exercise or stimulation, it is possible that they are bored and lonely. This could lead to loss of appetite. On the other hand, it is also possible that your dog is suffering from anxiety- whether from loud sounds, or storms, or separation from you, which can also impact their appetite.
If your dog stops eating food suddenly and if this goes on for a while, it is possible that there is something wrong with their health. They could be in some kind of pain or discomfort, or there could be something wrong with their internal systems. The best thing to do would be to visit the vet and get a thorough check up done. If any health issues are found, the treatment should help take care of eating problems as well.
If none of these apply to your doggo, there could be one other very simple reason why your dog is being fussy about food- it is because they do not like it! Maybe it is too dry, or too wet for them. Maybe they like their food warmer or cooler. Maybe they just don’t like the taste. Maybe they are bored of eating the same old boring food and need some new excitement in it.
If you think this is the reason your dog may be fussy about food- boy, do we have a solution for you! Pet Chef’s got two offerings that’ll help you breathe a sigh of relief during meal times:
- Pet Chef Meals: Freshly cooked using human grade ingredients and packed using state of the art retort technology, Pet Chef meals contain the perfect balance of taste and nutrition using muscle & organ meats, healthy vegetables, and essential micro nutrients cooked in the delicious and nutritious bone broth. Available in 4 mouth-watering recipes that are completely natural and preservative-free, if this doesn’t stir your pooch’s appetite, we don’t know what will!
- Pet Chef Super Topper: Still prefer home cooked meals or store bought kibble? Just squeeze a dash of our all-natural Super Topper and watch the meals disappear! Pet Chef’s Super Topper is made using chicken organ meat (heart, liver, gizzard) cooked in bone broth with a little sweetness from pumpkin. This magical paste not only spruces up any meal that you serve your pooch, it also provides a whole lot of essential nutrients required for the short as well as the long term well being of your dog.
Bonus: For times your pooch refuses to eat anything at all, always keep Pet Chef’s 24-Hour Bone Broth handy. Freshly made by simmering bones, tendons, joints and ligaments of Goat & Chicken for 24-36 hours, bone broth is a comforting, nutrient-dense, easy to digest stock with powerful micronutrients with medicinal & therapeutic properties. Although this is not a replacement for a meal, it’ll keep them going until you consult a veterinarian and investigate this issue further.