Puppies are adorable and they need a lot of care and attention. During their growing age, they need to maintain a healthy lifestyle to grow up healthily and beautifully. As our pets become a part of our family, even their little discomfort leaves us tensed and nervous.
If your 4-month-old puppy suddenly stops eating, it might be quite stressful for you.
4 month old puppy not eating:
A 4-month-old puppy not eating can be a frustrating thing. It is normal for a puppy to go without eating for a few hours. But if it goes any longer than 12 hours, it needs serious attention. You need to start looking for signs of illness and consult a veterinarian for better advice.
A young puppy needs to eat at least three to four meals a day. Older puppies require to eat twice a day. If your puppy suddenly stops eating, it is natural for you to get worried. But, instead of stressing over the fact, you need to look for the reasons behind this and find solutions.
Sudden changes in life and food habits can cause a 4-month-old puppy to lose its appetite. If your puppy suddenly stops eating, check if it is facing any illness. You will notice the puppy getting weak, not moving too much, having fever, vomiting, or having diarrhea.
All these symptoms can go away within a day or two and your puppy may start eating again. If it doesn’t, you should definitely consult or visit a veterinarian to rule out serious illness and start necessary treatments.
Reasons why your 4 month old puppy not eating:
A pup can stop eating for several reasons, some of them has been given below –
Your puppy is stressed:
Young puppies are more sensitive than you’d think. Any big change in life makes them nervous and they find it hard to adjust to new situations quickly.
If your 4-month-old puppy suddenly stops eating right after you moved your house, took in a new pet, or had some other changes that affected your routine, your puppy may be stressed.
Your puppy is ill:
You need to be always careful with your puppies. Especially at a young age, they tend to eat things that are not meant for them to eat that can make them ill. If your puppy suddenly stops eating, it may be because it is ill.
Stomach problems, infections, inflammation, and parasites can make your puppy ill. Check for fever and other symptoms and consult a veterinarian to be sure.
If a puppy’s temperature reaches 103 degrees Fahrenheit or higher, you need to visit a veterinarian immediately.
You recently introduced a new diet to your puppy:
If you’ve introduced a new food to your puppy’s diet recently, it may be possible that the reason behind the puppy’s not eating suddenly is due to this change.
Puppies, like most other pets, don’t like changes. When you want to change your puppy’s diet, you must do this slowly.
Your puppy is teething:
Check if your puppy is teething. Just as toddlers find it hard to eat or chew when they’re teething, puppies do too. A puppy starts having permanent teeth when it’s three or four months old.
Getting permanent teeth can be a painful experience for the puppy and it may temporarily stop eating due to this. Give it some time to adjust to the situation and it will start eating normally once the pain subsides.
Should I be concerned about my 4-month-old puppy not eating?
Your 4-month-old puppy may not be eating for several reasons, but there remains a question, that is, should you get concerned regarding the issue? Let’s find that out below –
Vomiting and not eating:
Pets can vomit sometimes due to stomach discomfort. Since puppies are very eager, they can mistakenly swallow the wrong food and start vomiting afterward. This usually stops as soon as the discomfort goes away.
But, if the vomiting persists and your puppy continues to not show any interest in food, it can indicate stomach problems that need veterinarian attention.
Has diarrhea and not eating:
Diarrhea can be another symptom of stomach problems in puppies. If diarrhea stops after a few times, your puppy may soon start to feel well and eat again.
But if diarrhea persists and your puppy shows no signs of getting well, it may be wise to consult with a veterinarian as soon as possible.
Not eating or drinking:
Puppies need to drink and eat properly to go on with their regular lives. It is said that a puppy or a dog needs to eat one ounce of water for every pound of its weight. If your puppy doesn’t drink enough water, it can become dehydrated.
If your puppy urinates in dark yellow color, has sunken eyes, becomes lethargic, or starts panting, it can be a sign that your puppy is dehydrated. If your 4-month-old puppy stops eating and drinking at the same time, you need to be concerned about its health.
Lethargic and not eating:
Lethargy often happens due to dehydration. Puppies often stop showing interest in drinking water along with food. This can cause serious dehydration leading to lethargy, urinary discomfort, and panting. Such conditions should be concerning and dealt with immediately.
Not eating much food:
Your 4-month-old puppy not eating much food can be concerning. Keep tracking the amount of food intake and see if it decreases with time. Sometimes, emotional stress and slight physical discomfort can cause puppies to lose interest in food.
If your puppy doesn’t start eating on its own within 12 hours, you should consult a veterinarian.
Not eating kibble:
Sometimes, puppies get bored eating the same food. Oftentimes, they find kibble too dry. You can add some warm water to the kibble to give some moisture to the food. You can also try mixing a small amount of wet food into the kibble to make it moist and palatable.
Consult or visit a vet:
You should consider consulting or visiting a vet to rule out underlying causes behind your puppy not eating. While it may be nothing too serious, it is wise to consult a veterinarian to be fully sure.
Stomach problems, parasites, and infections can be treated easily with simple medications and some dietary changes. A veterinarian can give you better suggestions on how you can make your puppy interested in eating again.
Offer warm food to the puppy:
Sometimes, warming up the wet food can be a way of encouraging your puppy to eat. It is actually all about trial and error. You need to find out the puppy’s preference by trying out ways.
Give the puppy time to release stress:
Comfort is very important to pets. A puppy can also need some time to rest and recharge. You need to make sure that your puppy is always at ease and feels at home.
It needs to be relaxed to play, eat, and rest properly. You can get some comfortable but fun toys for the puppy. Also, try to designate playtime so your puppy feels happy at home.
Make meals fun and mix up a little:
Making mealtime fun can be another wonderful idea to encourage your puppy to start eating again. Sometimes, just like humans, puppies get bored of their regular food. It can be nice to mix it up a little so your puppy feels interested to try the food.
Transition dog foods slowly:
If you’re planning on introducing new food to your puppy’s diet, it is better to transition slowly. Sudden introduction to a new food can seem unappealing to a puppy.
Pull back on the treats a little:
A big part of a pet’s training involves giving them treats once they achieve something. Now, if you give away too many treats, it can influence them badly. Pulling back on the treats temporarily can be a way to make your puppy interested in eating again.
Establish a healthy routine:
You can try establishing a healthy routine to maintain your puppy’s lifestyle. Try to designate specific times for meals, walks, playing, and resting. This will help your puppy know what to expect at a particular time. This will be better for a healthy life as well as to alleviate stress.
How long can a 4-month puppy go without eating?
Young puppies are tiny little creatures. They are not as strong as big dogs. They also don’t have fat reserves that can help them go longer without eating. A 4-month-old puppy not eating can be due to many reasons. You must find the reason first to start any treatment.
However, a 4-month-old puppy can’t go any longer than 12 hours without eating. If the puppy is not facing anything serious, it may soon start eating itself. But, if the situation doesn’t change within 12 hours, you must seek veterinary help.
A 4-month-old puppy not eating can be very frustrating to the owner. If your puppy suddenly stops eating, check for other physical changes like fever, diarrhea, vomiting, or lethargy. Seek veterinary help if any of these conditions persist. You can also try some easy solutions at home.