How can I get my dog to eat when he doesn't have an appetite?
My dog has early-stage CRF. I've switched his diet to more kidney-friendly foods, but he generally refuses to eat. He'll sniff food, then turn his head away from it. Sometimes I can get him to eat a few bites of food if I put some in his mouth first. He might spit it out and smack his lips, but in those cases he'll eat two or three more bites of whatever I'm feeding him, then get back to avoiding the food.
What are some ways I can get him to eat? Any foods or strategies for getting his appetite stimulated? He's still lively when we go on walks, but he just shuts down when he'd normally be eating. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
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2 Answers from these members:
I am very sorry your dog is not eating. I love dogs and it can be very upsetting. I found a link that I attached below. I hope your dog gets better soon. I also hope this will be useful while you wait for an expert to answer you.
Maintaining good nutrition is essential. Switching to a special diet is important, the choices are using a commercial / veterinary prescribed diet, preparing a homemade diet or a combination. It sounds like your dog is doing well except for appetite. I would consider doing home preparation. Dogs tend to enjoy these preparations, it's special and very different from eating dog food. I'm including a link to get you started on the necessities of a CRF diet. Always check with your veterinarian before making any changes. Most veterinarians have recipes for home made diets specific to the dog's needs. Home made diets can be done exclusively or added to an existing food regime. When appetites are compromised, you might consider smaller meals throughout the day. Since he is lively on walks, consider taking a small portion of food with on the walks and using it as a treat strategy. This can be fed by hand, a small portable bowl, paper plate - anything different but fun to stimulate him into eating. I hope this helps.
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