How to get your dog to eat when he's starting to make you nervous

Every dog parent has been there. Your dog just stops eating or seems to have lost their appetite. It can be frustrating, stressful, and somehow disheartening. Luckily, you’ve come to the right place because we have some creative ways to help get your pet eating again.

Before we continue though we must address the importance of making sure your dog isn’t suffering from a more serious issue. Consult your veterinarian for issues such as food intolerances, digestive issues, poor dental hygiene, or other health related issues.

Please note that environmental changes and increased stress can also change your pup’s appetite.


Has your environment changed?

Shortly after we had gotten a new puppy my boyfriend was deployed, and I noticed my pup had stopped eating. For a growing husky this was very unusual. I called my vet and that’s when they informed me that the change in the household is causing my dog to not want to eat. Instead of adding things to the food to entice him to eat, she suggested I just leave the food out because he will eat when he wants to. She was right! He’s still an animal and will eat when he’s hungry.


What about a dog you just adopted?

Coming out of a shelter to a new home can be stressful, scary and is a very huge change in environment. Especially if a dog is coming from an abused home where they probably had little to no food. Be patient with dogs because they’re adjusting to their new surroundings just like you’re adjusting to them.


If environment isn’t the issue, let’s try something else...

Cut back on scraps and treats

If your pup is only eating treats and table scraps, then cut it out of their routine. A human can live off candy—that doesn’t mean they should! Without the treats they’ll go back to eating their daily food.

Leave the food out

As we mentioned before, dogs are still animals. They have natural instincts and will eat when they are hungry. So, leave the food out and they’ll get to it when they’re ready.

Add food toppers

If you think your dog is just being picky and something isn’t causing stress or pain when he eats, then you can add some healthy food toppers to his everyday food to entice him to eat. There are a variety of food toppers available, please consult with your veterinarian before.

Get rid of distractions

Sometimes a crowded room, loud noises and too much excitement could distract them from eating. Try feeding them in a quiet place so they can concentrate on their food and not whats going on around them.

Hydrate the food

Regardless if your dog is a picky eater or not, we suggest always hydrating your dog’s kibble. You can use unsalted chicken broth or water. Not only will this taste good to your dog, but your dog will also be getting hydrated. Another tip is warming it up for a few seconds in the microwave, it will moisten the food quickly and the smell will get his attention. 

Try a new food

If your dog seems to be uninterested in their food, we suggest that you get a new brand or flavor that might entice him. You can mix it with his old food to ween him off of it. This will help to make sure he doesn’t get sick from the new food. Please make sure to check with your vet before switching foods and be cautious of allergies.

Exercise more

If your dog isn’t eating, he could be filled already—with energy. Make sure your dog is getting enough exercise and working up an appetite throughout the day.

As always be sure to check with your vet before making drastic changes to your dog’s routine and diet! And when your pup has a happy tummy and is ready to hit the playground (a.k.a. the runway), be sure to deck her out with the best of Frenchie's gear! 


January 21, 2022 — Maggie May

Leave a comment