Did Anything Change in Your Household?
Some dogs may be sensitive enough that a change in their environment may cause inappetence. Examples include a new addition to the family (whether a new pet or a new baby), construction, having people over, or even a change in the location of the food and water bowls.
While noise phobias aren’t specific to your household necessarily, things like thunderstorms and fireworks can also cause enough anxiety to discourage your dog from eating.
Does Your Dog Eat Treats But Not Food?
If your dog is refusing dinner but saying yes to treats or table scraps, they may be filling up on “junk food” rather than their own dog food. However, if your dog has other symptoms of not feeling well, a medical condition could be to blame for their altered appetite.
For example, if your dog is happy, energetic, drinking water, playing, and not having any vomiting or diarrhea, it may be that they are simply getting too many calories per day in treats and aren’t hungry for their meal. They may also have outsmarted you, knowing that if they refuse to eat their food, they’ll get tasty chicken and dog treats instead.
However, if your dog is lethargic, having any vomiting or diarrhea, starting to eat a bit then stopping, or drooling or licking their lips, they may not be feeling 100% well. Treats are higher rewards, so many dogs will be more likely to eat those rather than their food, even if they aren’t feeling the best. Think of a time when you’ve had an upset stomach but powered through to have your favorite treat while passing up the salad bar.
It is always best to be on the safe side and have any possible medical conditions ruled out if getting your dog to eat is becoming a frequent challenge.
The Different Types of Refusal
A dog’s refusal to eat is called “anorexia,” just like in humans, although it’s a different condition. Canine anorexia can be partial or complete.
“Pseudo-anorexia” is the term used for partial anorexia. When dogs have some desire to eat but a reduced appetite. Pseudo-anorexia can be caused by pain or difficulty eating thor food, injuries in the mouth are a typical cause but other issues could also be behind a decreased appetite and food consumption.
Complete anorexia is when your dog refuses to eat anything. This is typically much more concerning than partial anorexia.
Food discrimination is when your dog will eat some things but refuse to eat others. For example, they may turn up their noses at their kibble but wolf down any treats you offer them.
Once you figure out what exactly is going on with your dog you are already on the way to fixing the issue.
How to Make My DOG EAT DRY FOOD! ✅ 5 Easy TRICKS!
If your dog won’t eat kibble you might be a bit concerned, after all, most commercial dog foods come in this form! Sometimes it’s the kibble itself he doesn’t like, after all, what the best dry dog food is for one dog may not be preferred by another.
There is variation in biscuit size, shape, and texture, as well as flavor. So just because he doesn’t like one type, it doesn’t mean he will dislike all of them.
However, there could be several other reasons he’s doesn’t want to eat his dry food, which we will explore further here.