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How Long Can a Dog Go without Eating?

Food is essential for the life of any living being. Without food, human beings could not function properly.

Most of the energy that our bodies acquire every day comes from food, and this is exactly the same in the case of dogs. An animal of this type cannot go many days without eating; otherwise, its chances of survival will be minimal.

How Long Can a Dog Go without Eating

It is important to note that a healthy dog ​​could survive approximately 5 days without food as long as it drinks enough water. However, this is something that you should prevent from happening at all since poor nutrition can cause many health problems in these animals.

If your dog loves to eat, but you notice that from one day to the next, it loses its appetite, then it is obvious that something is happening.

Many factors can influence a canine’s desire to eat, such as diseases, stress, anxiety, and other health problems.

Can My Dog ​​Go a Long Time without Eating?

Previously we have said that healthy dogs can go 5 days without eating, but there really is no specific amount of time that an animal of this type can go without eating.

Some dogs can only survive 2 or 3 days without food, while a few others could even go up to a week without an appetite. However, keep in mind that this will depend on the lifestyle of these animals. A healthy dog ​​has a better chance of surviving without food than one with a poor lifestyle.

The most common influencing factors:

  • Dog health: A healthy dog ​​can go longer without eating than one with poor nutrition since its body can respond appropriately to the lack of food.
  • Level of physical activity: The physical state of a dog is related to its health. A canine that receives enough daily exercise will be healthy, allowing it to go 4-5 days without eating before experiencing any severe health problems.
  • Age: According to several studies, puppies can go longer without eating than adults.
  • Amount of water it consumes: Water is essential for the body of dogs. A canine can go several days without eating but not without drinking water. Therefore, an animal of this type can only go between 5 and 7 days without eating as long as it has access to water. Otherwise, the consequences could be severe faster than you think.

Reasons Why My Dog ​​Is Not Eating

It is normal to worry if our dogs are not eating. We have to remember that these animals love food and will always want to eat everything we put in front of them, no matter how much. That is why it is somewhat strange when an animal of this type has no appetite.

We should not worry if our dogs have not eaten for a day. Most of the time, it is not something related to a serious situation. However, if these dogs go more than 48 hours without an appetite, then it is important to take action immediately.

There are several reasons (some serious and some not) why many dogs go hours or even days without eating:

Irresponsible Owners

There are a lot of people who are not cut out for taking care of dogs. Many irresponsible dog owners fail to provide a proper lifestyle for their pets, and that includes not feeding them enough or just not feeding them at all.

This is one of the reasons many canines try to run away from home.

Picky Dogs

People have preferences for specific foods, and dogs are no exception. Generally, all dogs eat whatever their owners serve them. However, some might be quite picky about the dish in front of them.

If your pet doesn’t like the food you’re offering, it just won’t eat.

Stressful Situation

Stress and anxiety limit both people and animals in many ways. Dogs can feel stressed in a wide variety of situations.

A stressed canine won’t feel like doing anything at all, and that includes eating. That is why it is essential to always keep our pets in a pleasant environment.

Different Environment

Dogs are creatures that do not like changes. If you move your dog to another house, chances are it won’t want to eat, exercise, or anything else. You should give it approximately several days to get used to the new home.

If your pet still does not feel like eating for several days, it is advisable to take it to the vet. They will find the solution to this situation.


When a dog has not eaten for more than 48 hours, it is most likely due to an illness or health problem that we should not ignore. Taking the canine as quickly as possible to the veterinarian for an immediate check-up is essential.

Some health problems that cause loss of appetite in these animals are:

  • Diabetes 
  • Enteritis
  • Esophagitis
  • Gastritis
  • Gingivitis
  • Intestinal cancer
  • Neck pain
  • Oral trauma
  • Oral tumors
  • Tooth root abscess

How to Help My Dog ​​to Eat Again?

Before giving you some tips to help your dog regain its appetite, you must understand that they will not work if the origin of the problem is related to health. The best thing to do in that case is to take your pet to the vet.

Now, if a disease or health problem is not what is causing your dog not to eat, then you can follow the following tips:

  • Make its food look and smell more delicious. If the canine is bored of always eating the same thing, perhaps the best option is to change its diet to one with more attractive foods.
  • Flavor your dog’s water. Just because a canine isn’t eating doesn’t mean it doesn’t drink water. You can add beef or chicken broth to their water.
  • If your dog doesn’t eat the food you serve, then try offering it delicious treats. These animals love them.