How Long Can a Dog Go Without Food? Symptoms It’s A Serious Issue
A dog can go up to 5 days without food. Some dogs can last up to 7 days without food but this is mainly possible by drinking water. If you see that your dog hasn’t eaten for 48 hours, make sure to visit the vet and check if it’s a condition you should be worried about.
How long can a dog go without food?
Your dog is most likely going to survive 5 days without eating. As a pet owner, you should never allow your dog to go as many days without eating and you should investigate possible health issues stopping your canine from indulging in delicious foods.
Why isn’t my dog eating?
This should be the question on your mind the first day after you’ve noticed your dog hasn’t eaten. Most dogs can’t wait for the next treat or tasty meal and this is why it’s hard to believe they’re not eating out of their own will and not because of a medical issue. Possible issues include the following.
An upset stomach should be the first indication your dog isn’t eating properly. There are a few causes of an upset stomach which could include eating food that is past it’s used by date. Dogs eat all types of nasty things and this could be the first area of concern as the stomach reacts to defend the digestive system.
Depression is a real issue for dogs as well. Some breeds are known for being specifically open to depression. These breeds include the border collie, Cocker Spaniel, German shepherd, and Labradors. Each of these breeds has its characteristics.
For example, Labradors are highly active dogs that can get bored easily. If Labs don’t get the attention or the exercise they expect, they start self-destructive behavior and chewing on all types of objects around the house. During this period, they can even stop eating altogether.
German Shepherds are very smart dogs but their DNA is made for gathering and giving directions. They also obey their owners well and when they’re separated for long periods, they become sad, anxious, or depressed. These dogs need plenty of activity as well as they love wide open spaces where they can explore and make the most of their intelligent nature.
A dog not eating for no apparent reason is a major red flag of depression. Going back to old habits and spending time with your dog is the best way to get over the depression stage. Taking the dog out for walks is also a physical method of giving the dog attention.
Possible digestive infection
Infections can also occur commonly in the life of a dog. You can treat digestive infections with medication recommended by a certified veterinarian. It normally takes a few days for the medicine to take action and kill off the infection.
Physical pain is common in many breeds. Joint pain is very common in dogs. Each dog feels pain differently, just as humans. In more extreme cases, prolonged periods of pain can lead to not eating. But it’s not only about joint pain, but your dog might also have stepped on sharp objects and it’s worth investigating for physical signs of pain when you see your pooch is abstaining from food.
Allergies are also common in dogs. Seasonal allergies, fleas, and food allergies are a real issue. Quick signs of allergies to look for include itchiness, licking, scratching, skin redness, and loss of fur.
An undiagnosed disease
Taking your pet to the vet frequently is all that you can do to keep it free from diseases from a medical perspective. This practice is one of the best when it comes to discovering possible diseases early on.
There are many dog diseases that your canine can suffer from. At some point, almost all serious diseases will make your dog not eat for some time. It can take days for your dog to eat again if the physical pain from diseases is getting too much.
In the best-case scenario, your dog is just too picky. Some new foods might not be liked by your pooch and it’s worth reverting to old food to see if it’s something that goes down well. Picky eating can also be a false interpretation of low-quality dog food. Certain dog foods filled with chemicals, hormones, and filler ingredients simply taste bad. In this case, you can interpret this wrongly as picky eating.
What should I do when my dog won’t eat?
When you notice your dog isn’t eating, there are a few things you can do to try and fix the problem with a sense of urgency.
Determine the length of the nutritional irregularity
The first thing you need to recall is the last time when you saw your dog eating. This is important. Your dog could not be eating for a day or 3 days. Depending on the answer, your dog might need a quick visit to the emergency room at your local vet. There are even a few times your dog might not be eating for a day simply because of a mild stomach upset which can be over within 24 hours.
Check for immediately visible symptoms
It’s hard to determine why your dog is not eating simply by looking at him. However, you need to check for physical symptoms or clues. Your dog might have gotten into a fight with another dog. Your mutt could have stepped on a nail or a piece of glass. All of these signs should be visible on the dog and they can be an indication of a deeper issue causing the man’s best friend lack of appetite.
Try different food
One of the first things you need to do when you notice your dog isn’t eating for a longer period is to try different food. You will be able to find something delicious in your fridge from a piece of juicy sausage to simple yogurt or try out the best dry food. If your dog is still not eating, it’s clear the type of food in the bowl isn’t the cause of the problem.
Consider stress (sudden changes of habit)
Stress isn’t tied to humans. Animals are stressed as well. There are a few known high-stress periods of the life of your dog. If your dog has just been adopted, the stress of the situation might cause a loss of appetite. If you as the pet owner are away from home for long, the dog can also enter a period of stress and anxiety.
Book a vet appointment to deal with long periods without food
The most important action you can take when your dog isn’t eating is to make an appointment at the vet. Depending on the time of the last meal, you might even need to visit the emergency room at a pet clinic. You need to take action as soon as you notice your dog has stopped eating completely.
When it comes to drinking water, things are even worse. Most dogs can only go up to 3 days without drinking water before immediately seeing a major deterioration of their health. Make sure you pay attention to how and when your dog is eating to avoid these issues.