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How Long Can a Dog Go Without Food?

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There are several reasons why you might be concerned about your dog not eating. Has your pooch not touched his food today? Or are you running late and unable to feed your dog at her normal meal time? Regardless of the specific situation, regular meal times are very important for dogs. Dogs are pets that need routine to stay sane and well-behaved. If your dog is not eating for several days then there might be an underlying issue. Read on to find out when to take action if your dog is going without food.

Why Is Your Dog Not Eating?

Several things can explain why your dog is not eating. There might be an underlying health issue or perhaps there are environmental and behavioural factors affecting her appetite. Read through some of the possible causes below.

Environmental ReasonsNew Environment

The environment of the dog will impact their behaviour. Feeding your dog in an unfamiliar environment can make your pooch confused and too stressed to eat. This can happen when you feed your dog somewhere other than at home, perhaps while you are travelling. A crowded space will also distract your dog away from his bowl.

If you’ve moved to a new house then your dog may need to some time to adjust. Spread around items that your dog is familiar with so that he feels more comfortable in the new house. Examples are a blanket, dog bed or toys. Don’t worry too much about your dog not eating if moving house is the cause. Your dog will get back into his normal feeding patterns as soon as he is used to the new house.

Unsuitable Feeding Space

The placement of the feeding bowl might also be a reason why your pooch isn’t eating. Perhaps the bowl is not at the right height. Larger breeds eat more comfortably from a raised platform. You can purchase a raised dog bowl table from your local petshop. Smaller breeds can easily eat from a bowl placed on the ground.

Other placement factors might be, again, how crowded the space is. A dog that has not yet adjusted properly to the household might prefer eating in a more quiet space. Somewhere where there are not a lot of people passing by or other dogs feeding.

Also, always make sure that the dog bowl is clean. Don’t leave any leftovers in the bowl because this can attract bacteria and ants.

Health Reasons

You don’t need to raise alarm when your dog has skipped a meal or two. However, if your pooch has gone more than a day without eating or drinking water, then there might be a health issue. Take your dog to the vet if more than 48 hours have passed since your dog has eaten. In case your dog is not drinking water either then take your dog to the vet after 24 hours.

There are a few symptoms to look out for when your dog is not eating. Check his gums. They should be pink and moist.

Also, check for gastrointestinal issues. Does your dog have diarrhoea or is he constipated? Touch his stomach and make sure it is not tense or painful. Your dog will not want to be touched in a sensitive area. If the stomach is painful then he will pull away, whimper or growl when you are touching it. If any of these symptoms are present, take your dog to the vet immediately and don’t wait for the first 24 hours to pass.

Diet

Another factor impacting your dog’s appetite is their diet. As mentioned, dogs need routine in their life and this includes their meals. Irregular meal times can cause stomach upsets like gassiness.

Aside from irregularity in meal times, also reflect on how many treats your dog is receiving every day. If snack time is close to meal time, your dog might still be full from the treat. Too many treats throughout the day will fill up his furry belly. Make sure that the wet and dry meals are the main source of nutrition. Treats should remain exactly what they are called, an occasional special extra.

The food itself needs to be consistent as well. Changing the menu for your dog needs to be done gradually so that your dog’s digestive system can adjust. Sudden changes will cause gastrointestinal issues. It is also wise to test out whether your dog is allergic to new foods by feeding only a few bites, at first.

Just like humans, dogs have their own tastes. Has your dog stopped eating when you tried a new brand? Maybe Rover simply doesn’t like it. This is why you should introduce any diet changes gradually, for both health reasons and behavioural reasons.

Other than new food, check whether the food is still fresh. Dogs are much more sensitive to smells so they will notice when a food is no longer edible.

What You Need to Remember

Regular meal times is important for a dog’s health and good behaviour. 1-3 meal times are appropriate depending on the breed, age and level of activity. Stick to the same feeding times. Keep the portions and composition of the meals consistent. Sudden changes is not pleasant for your dog’s digestive system.

If your dog is refusing to eat, check for symptoms of illness. Is your dog still drinking water? Are the gums healthy? Does your dog have any aches, especially a sensitive stomach? If you are concerned that your dog might be ill, go the vet within 24 hours. If your dog is otherwise healthy then consider the environmental factors. Are there any changes in routine that could cause your dog to be stressed? Introduce environmental changes and changes in routine gradually. This will help your pooch adopt the new spaces and routines better, without having to go hungry.

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HEALTH

18 Dogs Who Were Busted Doing Hilarious Dog Things

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…and shamed for their crimes.

Dogs will be dogs! And these 18 dogs prove that no matter what they do, we’ll always forgive them. This list was assembled by members of the Bored Pandacommunity, and it’s sure to make you laugh! 

#1 This is what I call teamwork.

#2 Enough said.

#3 He’s so very sorry…

#4 What a genius idea!

#5 It happens…

#6 Time to start sleeping on your stomach.

#7 He’s still getting used to this thing. 

#8 Which one’s in trouble??

#9 This relationship got off to a rocky start…

#10 Oh no…

#11 He now knows the Bible inside and out.

#12 Lesson learned.

#13 Working together.

#14 Just getting into the holiday spirit…

#15 ‘What? I thought she was a part of the park…’

#16 Smart! 

#17 He went to the dark side.

#18 A look of regret.

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HEALTH

Matted Dog Found Locked In A Small Crate Gets A New Look And New Life

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Murphy looks totally different now.

PETA fieldworkers came across a neglected, matted dog who was kept locked up in a small crate in a dark hallway. They wanted nothing more than to rescue him, and his family finally agreed to give him up.

Although he didn’t look much like a dog at first, Murphy’s true beauty and personality were about to be freed! Over two pounds of painful mats were cut from his seven-pound body. And Murphy had a brand new look to go with his brand new life! 

Murphy spent some time recovering at PETA before being transferred to the Norfolk SPCA. And it was there that he would meet his new family. The before and after photos of Murphy are hard to believe, and the little guy is now living it up!

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HEALTH

7 Things Dogs And Humans Have In Common

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Dogs are the oldest domesticated animal, having been working alongside humans some 15,000 years. They have assisted with a variety of tasks and some still do so today. Dogs have helped by herding, hunting, pulling loads, guarding and protecting, assisting police and military and being noble companions. Regardless of the dog’s breed, it’s origin general traces back to one of these functions. It should come as no surprise then that dogs and humans share so many unique qualities. We’ve evolved together for thousands of years, so it makes sense that we’re so much alike. Dogs aren’t called “man’s best friend” for no reason.

#1 – They’re social

Dogs are social animals. Their ancestors lived in family-like packs, the same way wolves and many other wild canids do today. Dogs enjoy spending time with their people and this is a trait that we’ve bred from the very beginning. After all, what good was a farm dog if he didn’t like being around his owner? Humans have been breeding dogs for companionship and sociability from the very beginning.

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#2 – They’re furniture hogs

Not everyone wants their dogs on the furniture, but most of us know that we’re much less strict about it than we should be. In fact, most of us are probably quite comfortable sharing much of our couches and beds with our dogs. They’re opportunists (also like us), and will quickly take up all the space they can!

#3 – They love food

Food is love, for people and dogs alike. We are both a social species and much of our social interactions revolve around food. This is true for wild canids as well. While we don’t share all of our food with our dogs at home, we can share the love for a delicious meal and snack.

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#4 – They’re intelligent

Dogs are very intelligent animals. Recent studies support evidence that the average dog is as smart as the average two-year-old child. This means their minds and range of emotions are just as complex as that of a human child. Dogs have been shown to have relatively notable emotional intelligence, problem solving skills and even demonstrate a theory of mind.

#5 – They have personal preferences

Dogs have personal preferences just like humans do. Dogs have favorite foods, toys and even people. Each dog is different in their likes and dislikes and while some seem to like everything and everyone, others might be very picky.

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#6 – They have unique personalities

Dogs are what their genetics and upbringing allow and different dogs will have different personalities. Some traits are breed-specific, but even within breeds you will find some variation. Generally speaking, a dog’s personality will reflect the tasks it was bred to do. Sledding dogs are active and independent, hunting dogs are social and energetic, guardian breeds are loyal and aloof toward strangers. These are generalizations of course, button be mostly accurate.

#7 – They are emotional

Dogs are deeply emotional creatures. They bond very strongly to their families, humans and other animals alike. Studies show that dogs feel complex emotions such as jealousy and anticipation and that they can discriminate the emotional expressions on human faces. They are instinctive but intuitive animals that are thought to experience love, fear, anger, joy and affection. Anthropomorphizing can become a serious problem, but the complicated emotions dogs feel can’t be ignored.

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