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Like all pet parents, you only want what’s best for your fur babies – whether you have a dog or a cat, or both. You’re happy when they’re happy, and just knowing they’re healthy is already a gift in itself.
Any change in their behaviour becomes a source of worry, especially when your usually frisky and voracious eater suddenly withdraws from food – even their certified favourites! But don’t panic just yet.
Loss of appetite in your pet may be due to stress or a behavioural problem.
Perhaps you recently moved to a new neighbourhood or got yourself a new furry family member. It may also be that you have been giving your pet too many treats lately, or they lack exercise and stimulation or need a change in food.
If the food withdrawal is due to such causes, simple modifications such as warming the food to make it more appetising, hand feeding, temporarily withholding treats, giving them food-dispensing Kongs (for dogs and cats) or food-dispensing puzzle toys, or simply changing up their food gradually would help.
Time to visit the vet
As a pet parent, you can only do so much until your furry pal starts eating like before. However, if your pet’s food withdrawal is due to dental issues, parasites, internal obstructions, or other underlying medical conditions, your best bet is to get them checked by your vet.
Dogs who suffer from the following diseases experience loss of appetite initially:
- Gastric ulcers
- Kidney failure
- Bacterial or viral infections
- Urinary tract infections
Cats who suddenly withdraw from food may need to be checked for the following medical conditions:
- Cat flu
- Kidney disease
A visit to the vet will help you ascertain the reason behind your pet’s lack of interest in food, and it may not necessarily be because of an illness.
Going to the vet also means you’ll be getting professional advice in case simple dietary changes are needed to restore your pet’s appetite.