Dog Lost His Appetite?

Like people, dogs can be fussy eaters (and cats, for the record, are even worse!). Some dogs will eat anything on offer, and are fine to be given new foods. Others, however, will turn their noses up at anything slightly different. Or, alternatively, they may suddenly go off a food they have always enjoyed.

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Image: Doggies.com

Aside from illness, there are some very simple reasons that your dog might be rejecting a particular food. These are:

Taste: some dogs are simply fussy about the taste of a particular food. Like us, they have their individual preferences. Additionally, freshness has an enormous impact on taste – so make sure all food you offer your dog is within expiry or “best before” limits and that opened food is stored properly.  When you find a food that your pet enjoys, stick with it – and hopefully he won’t become bored!

Texture: again, like with people, fussy eaters can be turned away if the texture of a food is off putting to them. Lots of dogs prefer food that is easy to chew, though qualities such as cohesiveness, hardness, elasticity and viscosity of foods can attract or repel depending on the dog and his personal taste. Some dogs prefer smooth kibble, others like soft canned meats. Some like hard and crunchy dog biscuits, while others prefer loaf meats. Each dog has his own preferences.

Smell: this may have the biggest impact of all. Aroma can entice us (and our pets) to want to eat – or it can have the complete opposite effect. Some odours are too strong. Some older pets, whose sense of smell is failing, might need stronger smelling foods to appeal to them. Aging foods lose their aroma. Degrading foods become rancid. Make sure food is fresh and doesn’t smell odd or bad.

Too Many Treats: like children, dogs will readily fill up on treats between meals and then not have any appetite when it comes to meal time. Treats are called so for a reason – they are tasty and much more appealing than the main event. Giving your dog table scraps also constitutes a treat. A good guide is to make treats of all kinds no more than ten percent of his daily diet intake at most.

If your dog’s appetite doesn’t improve within a few days or with a change of food on offer, seek guidance from your vet, to rule out health or dental issues.

 

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