The age of a dog determines how long he can go without eating or drinking. For a newborn pup, he could be able to go 2 hours without drinking; older dogs can go as long as 5 hours conveniently without wanting to drink or eat.
Except your dog is sleeping and sleeps beyond 2 hours or 5 hours respectively, we do not advise that you keep your dog hungry for longer than his limit, as this could lead to a potential damage in your dog’s health.
If it so happens that your dog sleeps beyond the hours he can go without eating, as soon as he wakes up, you should get some food into his stomach. Dogs like to eat and it would be in your dog’s best interest if you knew what he likes to eat and serve him at the right time.
This article will give answers to your questions about your dog’s eating habits and how long he can hold without eating or drinking. Read on!
How Long Can A Puppy Go Without Eating
As soon as a puppy is given birth to, the mother dog should commence breastfeeding in order to keep the newborn pup nourished.
In some cases where the pup is not able to get food from its mother immediately due to an emergency or complication, the puppy would have to rely on the nutrients he had gotten from the uterus until he can be breastfed.
However, the pup must not be made to starve for longer than 2 hours as this can lead to health conditions in the young pup such as dehydration, hypoglycemia and overall malnourishment.
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Reasons Your Puppy Might Skip His Meals
It is important that your puppy eats enough food as this is essential for growth. If your dog suddenly starts skipping mealtime or lacks interest in eating, you might need to pay a visit to your vet doctor pretty soon as your dog’s loss of appetite could be an health related issue and you would want to take care of it and help your dog get better.
Here are some reasons that could cause lack of appetite in your dog:
- Vaccination: loss of appetite is one side effect of vaccination, so if you just got your dog vaccinated, it is possible that he refuses to eat for a while.
- Infections: If your dog suddenly loses interest in eating, there is a possibility that he could have been infected with a virus or parasite. Some viruses and parasites that can cause digestive issues for your dog includes Roundworms and Parvovirus.
- Unwashed dish: dogs are generally neat and hardly do well with using dirty food bowls. If you serve your dog’s meal in an unwashed food bowl, he is likely to turn the meal down.
- Stress: change of environment or meeting new people and pets can be stressful for your dog. If your dog feels too stressed by these activities, he might just lose interest in eating for a while but he is sure to get over it once he gets accustomed to his new environment and neighbors. In such a case as this, you would want to hire the services of a behavior expert or a professional trainer to help your dog get through this quicker.
- Issues With Organs: now it would be a cause for serious concern if your dog’s loss of appetite is as a result of a damaged organ such as the kidney, heart, lungs or liver. You would need to visit your vet to ascertain what exactly is wrong in your dog and begin treatments immediately.
- Pain: A dog that is in pain is not likely to be very interested in eating food at that moment. This is only normal. You are very likely to find your dog’s appetite returning once the pain goes away.
- Pickiness: if you are one of such dog owners whose dogs are very icky, you might experience many sessions of appetite loss with your dog. Your dog could decide not to eat due to his dislike for the food served and it is likely to keep happening every time any of his less favorite meals are served.
- Stomach Disorder: an upset stomach can be very discomforting even for humans. This could be why your dog is not eating since he might be feeling nauseous.
- Change In Diet: Dog’s would always appreciate variety occasionally. If your dog has been on a particular diet for a while now, he may have gotten bored with it and refuse to eat it anymore. This is a good time to spice up his diet for a change.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Can Puppies Go All Night Without Eating?
Yes, puppies can go all night without eating. Although we strongly advise against keeping your pup hungry for longer than his limit according to his age, there is the exception of your dog sleeping through the night and way over the time limit for him to eat again.
If your dog sleeps through the night without getting hungry and waking up to eat, then that’s okay. But as soon as he does wake up, make sure to feed him his meal.
Should I Worry If My Puppy Is Not Eating?
If your puppy who used to be lively and had a huge appetite suddenly loses his appetite and is rarely interested in eating, you certainly should be worried. No dog just decides not to eat without a reason. Find out what your pup’s reason is and deal with it immediately so that your dog can get back to eating well again.
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What Happens If A Dog Doesn’t Eat For 2 Days?
As a dog owner, it is important that you observe your dog’s health and eating habits regularly, help him regain his appetite if the reasons for not eating are environmental or behavioral, get immediate medical assistance if the situation is beyond you.
First make sure to serve food in clean dishes, know your dog’s food preference and serve him that. It would be wise to know the feeding routine and schedules of your dog and follow them. These should help get your dog his appetite back.
After you must have done your part to help your puppy get back to eating and it all proves abortive, if your dog continues to show zero interest in eating for 2days, do well to consult your veterinary doctor immediately as the condition could be severe and even life-threatening.
Dogs can refuse to eat for many reasons that vary from medical to behavioral issues. Avoid punishing your dog whenever he turns his meals down. Rather, observe and find out what his reasons are; take the appropriate actions to help him get over his loss of appetite, whatever the reason turns out to be (behavioral or medical).
While at it, exercise some patience and reward him with treats when he eats his meals. This would encourage him to eat better.
It is important to note that you must not turn treats to regular meals for your dog, in a bid to get him to at least eat something. This could give your dog more complications than you would like.