As a doting dog devotee with over 20 years of experience caring for four-legged family members, I often get asked “My Australian Kelpie Won’t Eat, what should I do?” It’s a common concern for folks with four-legged family members when their furry friend seems disinterested in mealtime. As an enthusiastic pet expert, permit me to offer my best tips to get your pup excited about eating again.
There are many possible reasons why your dog may have lost their appetite. This article explores the top causes and proven solutions to help get your dog to eat again. Below are 10 of the most common reasons your dog might not be eating. Alternatively if you want to save some time you can get free vet advice directly.
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Common Reasons Your Australian Kelpie Won’t Eat
1. Dental Disease and Oral Pain
Dental disease like periodontal disease, tooth abscesses, and cracked teeth is very common in dogs and can cause severe oral pain that prevents them from wanting to chew their food. Signs that your Australian Kelpie has dental issues include bad breath, bleeding gums, pawing at the mouth, and spitting out food. Dogs may start eating only soft food or refuse to eat their meals.
See your vet as soon as possible if you notice these signs of dental disease, as untreated infections can spread bacteria to the circulatory system. Your vet will likely recommend a full dental cleaning and removal of diseased teeth under anesthesia to relieve your dog’s oral pain. They may also prescribe antimicrobials and analgesics. With treatment, your Australian Kelpie appetite should bounce back within a few days once the mouth pain subsides.
2. Nausea from Gastrointestinal Upset
Australian Kelpies often refrain from eating when they suffer from symptoms like nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or other gastrointestinal problems. The list of potential GI challenges includes allergies to dog food, inflammatory bowel disorders, pancreatitis, infections from parasites, and viral enteritis, can be the cause an Australian Kelpie wont eat.
By conducting blood tests, analyzing fecal samples, and getting abdominal imaging, the primary reason for appetite loss can be detected. The appetite usually returns quickly after the nausea reduces, especially with treatments involving anti-nausea medications, antibiotics, anti-inflammatory drugs, and tailored diets.
Always stick to the treatment plan set out by your veterinarian and provide the advised dosages to your dog.
3. Anxiety and Stress
Changes in routine, travel experiences, unfamiliar surroundings, loud sounds, and interactions with unknown pups or individuals often affect dogs deeply. These stressful or anxiety-provoking situations commonly cause a decreased appetite or outright refusal to eat.
Try to minimize your dog’s stress levels by maintaining normal routines when possible and using anti-anxiety medications/supplements if recommended by your vet. Also, stimulate their appetite by hand feeding delicious foods like cooked chicken, canned puppy food, or dry food such as kibble soaked in broth.
As your dog starts to relax and become more comfortable with the change causing their stress, their appetite should improve.
4. Australian Kelpie Decreased Sense of Smell
A dulled sense of smell is a common issue for older dogs and those with chronic nasal/respiratory diseases. Should the dog food come off as flavorless or uninviting, it doesn’t inspire them to eat or kindle their appetite.
Try warming up canned food or wet foods to release a stronger aroma.Over their usual kibble, add aromatic ingredients such as chicken broth, grated cheese, bits of bacon, or tinned fish.This makes the food more enticing.
If an upper respiratory infection is causing the smell loss, antibiotics and nasal decongestants from your vet can help restore their appetite.
5. Picky Eating Habits
Some Australian Kelpies are just naturally picky, whether due to boredom with their food or preference for human foods. It’s not uncommon for particular eaters to start bypassing meals or being very discerning with their food choices.
In addressing a discerning dog’s inclinations, it could be beneficial to cyclically swap between 3-4 quality food options like air-dried, raw, or canned varieties. You can also add irresistible mix-ins like diced ham, scrambled eggs, plain yogurt, or cottage cheese to their normal kibble.
Refrain from indulging their selective habits by not giving them leftovers from the human table. By being patient and imaginative, discovering foods that your selective dog adores becomes feasible.
Consider these products as suitable options for Australian Kelpies with selective tastes.
6. Underlying Medical Issue
Many internal health challenges, not limited to dental and gastrointestinal conditions, can result in a lack of appetite in Australian Kelpies. Among the problems are diseases of the kidney, cancerous growths, hypothyroidism, infections in the urinary system, and failure of vital organs.
Make an appointment with your vet right away if your adult dog goes 24+ hours without eating or seems lethargic. Tests such as blood examinations, urine analysis, and radiographic imaging can reveal if a hidden health issue affects your dog’s appetite.
Once your dog starts recuperating, the right medical intervention usually reignites their normal appetite swiftly. But leaving health issues untreated can be dangerous.
7. A Change in Eating Routine
thrive on routines, and any disruption can often lead them to become finicky eaters. Situations causing this behavior encompass changing their food type, altering meal times, traveling, staying at kennels, having visitors, relocating, or introducing a new household member such as an infant or another pup.
Assist your canine companion in adapting to these changes by taking a steady approach over a period of 2-3 weeks. For example, when changing foods, transition over 7-10 days by slowly increasing the new food while decreasing the old.
Consistency and predictability will help bring back their regular appetite.
8. Australian Kelpie Feeling Overheated
During warm summer days, a dog’s attempt to remain cool through panting can diminish their appetite cues. Make sure your Australian Kelpie has constant access to shade, cool floors, and fresh water in warmer months.
You might want to serve bigger portions during the more refreshing parts of the day, like mornings or evenings. A helpful tip is to chill their food and water containers, which helps to cool the vicinity around their meal.
This tactic can foster eating even on sweltering days.
9. Competition with Other Pets
Certain Australian Kelpies can become nervous eating in proximity to other pets, causing them to avoid their meals. Other dogs or felines in the vicinity can induce strain due to shared resources, such as meals, playthings, and human interactions.
To mitigate this, feed your dogs in isolated spaces and employ baby barriers during mealtimes. Also, provide multiple food bowls spread widely apart to minimize competition. With these changes, anxious eaters usually become comfortable eating again.
10. A New Adoption or Move
Bringing home a rescue dog or moving with your dog to a new house are very disruptive life events. It’s completely normal for newly adopted Australian Kelpies or dogs adjusting to a new home environment to experience temporary appetite loss and stress.
Have patience, keep food available at all times, stick to your dog’s normal routine as much as possible, and use calming supplements if needed. Expect an enhancement in their dietary patterns and overall comfort in about a week or two as they acclimate to the shifts.
Speak To A Vet Online About Appetite Loss
Contact your vet promptly if your adult Australian Kelpie goes 24-48 hours without eating anything substantial. Procrastinating could result in critical outcomes like liver impairment from excessive toxins in the blood.
Puppies that refuse to eat their food or have appetite issues should see the vet within 12 hours, as they can deteriorate rapidly. Prepare to relay any notable symptoms in your dog, such as vomiting, diarrhea, tiredness, or indications of discomfort.
Your vet will perform diagnostic testing to uncover whether an underlying medical issue is causing your dog’s appetite loss.
Typically, once the ailment is treated, your dog’s appetite swiftly returns and they are encouraged to eat again.
Instead of an expensive vet trip, consider use our Ask A Vet online service to obtain prompt answers prior to a physical consultation. Using an online ask a vet service can get you answers right away instead of having a costly vet visit.
How to Get Your Australian Kelpie to Eat Home Remedies
For transient appetite declines in an otherwise fit dog, a few home solutions could be beneficial:
- Switch up the food: Introduce a different brand, taste, or form. The change could attract particular eaters.
- Include toppings: Enhance dry food with aromatic and flavorful additives such as canned seafood, chicken stock, or moistened food.
- Hand feed: Some dogs eat better when hand fed piece by piece. The extra attention can be encouraging.
- Warm the food: Microwaving kibble for 10 seconds releases aroma and makes food more appealing.
- Exercise first: A long walk before meals triggers hunger hormones in the body and brain can help get your pet to eat.
Preventing Appetite Issues in Dogs
While finicky appetites will always crop up occasionally, here’s how to minimize risks of long-term food refusal:
- It’s advisable to have biannual health examinations by the vet to identify and address any emerging health concerns promptly.
- Feed your dog a high quality, balanced diet that meets their nutritional needs.
- Engage their cognitive faculties each day through playthings, instructional sessions, and other enriching tasks.
- Maintain a regular feeding schedule, emphasizing consistent times and places.
If your dog still wont eat, then talking to a Dog Vet online will get you the help you need, it doesn’t matter if it’s an Australian Kelpie or an Australian Cattle Dog won’t eat, the Vet you will talk to will provide the information you need.
FAQs About an Australian Kelpie Not Eating
What can you do if your Australian Kelpie stops eating?
When your canine companion refuses to eat, there are several strategies you can experiment with initially before resorting to a vet visit:
- Consider changing their food – maybe offer wet food in lieu of kibble to stimulate their appetite
- Add mix-ins like shredded cheese, chicken broth, or canned fish to make the food more enticing
- Hand feed them one bite at a time and offer lots of praise
- Exercise prior to feeding to boost hunger
- Eliminate competition with other pets by feeding anxious eaters separately
Persistence and creativity in getting your dog to eat is key. If they continue to reject food after 24 hours, consider taking them to the vet to identify any underlying medical issue causing loss of appetite.
At what point should an Australian Kelpies refusal to eat become a concern?
It’s important to quickly get in touch with your vet if an adult dog goes 24-48 hours without eating anything substantial. Delaying for too long can cause dangerous complications like liver damage due to toxins circulating in their system. Puppies with appetite issues should see the vet within 12 hours, as they can deteriorate rapidly from not eating enough. Be ready to describe any symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, or pain you’ve noticed alongside their appetite issues.
How many days can an Australian Kelpie generally go without food?
An adult Australian Kelpie in good health can typically go 1-2 days without eating before it turns into a critical concern. Puppies under 6 months old should never try to go more than 12-24 hours without food because they are still growing. Lack of proper nutrition can swiftly lead to conditions such as hypoglycemia, dehydration, and liver dysfunction. You should always contact your vet if the loss of appetite lasts beyond 24 hours.
Why might an Australian Kelpie refuse to eat?
For intermittent loss of appetite, potential causes include:
- Issues with oral health like gum disease or broken teeth
- Ongoing gastrointestinal issues like IBD or food allergies
- Kidney disease or cancers affecting organ functionality
- Emotional factors like stress or anxiety
- Picky eating tendencies
- An underperforming thyroid gland
Procedures like dental check-ups, bloodwork, and imaging can reveal the underlying reasons for your dog’s inconsistent appetite patterns. Treatment becomes crucial to rectify the issue.
Why won’t my dog eat but acts normal?
- If your Australian Kelpieisn’t eating but otherwise acts happy and normal, potential causes might be:
- Situations such as stress or a change in routine
- Disliking a new food’s taste or texture
- Warm weather suppressing their appetite
- Being overly selective about their food
- A mild stomach upset
Using appealing food additions, maintaining a regular feeding schedule, and exercising before meals can often persuade such dogs to eat. However, if their refusal to eat continues for more than a day, it’s best to consult with your vet.