Dogs are known for eating almost anything, so if your pet doesn’t want to eat, you may be understandably concerned. Here’s what to do.

 A dog lays next to its bowl


Your pet may simply have a temporary gastrointestinal upset from a change in its diet, or it could be from something rotten that it’s eaten. Check for signs of vomiting or diarrhoea. If the problem hasn’t cleared up within 24-hours see your local Greencross Vets. Sudden and sustained loss of appetite may be a sign of illness or dental issues so visit your vet for a general check-up. Once medical causes are eliminated, here are some other things to ponder.


Dogs are creatures of habit. Changes like the introduction or loss of a family member, moving house or travel – may put them off their food for a few days. Even changing their diet can lead to a stomach upset. Try to find a wet or dry food product your dog likes and stick to it. Now you’ve decided to change, do so gradually over the course of 10 days by mixing the old with the new. Follow the below transition guide.

food props





Fussy eater

If your dog is simply a picky eater, here are some tips on making its dinner more enticing:

  • Feed your dog at the same time every day.
  • Limit food treats in between mealtimes. If you’re training your dog consider rewards like toys, a scratch or praise rather than treats.
  • Place your dog’s food on the ground for 15 minutes. If it hasn’t eaten by then, take it away. Hopefully this will encourage your dog to eat when food is available, rather than waiting for something better to come along.
  • Make sure you’re providing appropriate food for your dog’s age, size and specific dietary needs. There are products for sensitive stomachs, sensitive skin, senior dogs, puppies and pets with dental issues.
  • Experiment with texture and temperature. Try mixing wet and dry dog food, or add some warm chicken broth to dry biscuits.
  • Take your dog for a big walk before dinner to help it work up an appetite.