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Puppy not eating.

Species: Dog
Breed: GERMAN SHEPHERD
Age: 6-12 months
Hello my 7 month old pup just recently started to eat less. This just started 2 weeks ago. Before he would lick his bowl clean and have a huge appetite for food. Now he smells his food eats a little and walks away.He eats most of his food and leaves less then half. His stool is soft so i took him to see a vet, and they sent his stool so it can be tested for parasites. It came back negative. He is acting normal running, jumping and barking. His coat is also shedding a bit more. It could be because its winter ?. I just want a second opinion . I feed him abady dog food and add some chicken on top. Boiled chicken meat only no bone of course. Is this a stage or can it be something else.


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

This is a tough question to answer as I won't have a 100% for sure answer but I can give you a few ideas.

My first question is whether or not he is neutered. If not, then it could be hormones that are affecting his appetite. If there is a female dog in heat within miles of your house, the desire to breed can be so strong that it can stress a dog out to the point where it causes them to not eat.

Next, how old is your bag of food? If you have a brand new bag it is possible that there is a problem with the food. If it's near the end of the bag it's possible that the food has nonvisible mold in it. Does he eat the chicken willingly? If he will eat the chicken and not the food then it's worthwhile to try him with a new bag of food or a different brand and see what happens.

If this continues then the next step would be to get some blood tests done to make sure that there is no sort of underlying disease like a kidney problem or a liver problem. These are not common in young dogs but can happen, for example, if a toxin is ingested.

And if that doesn't turn anything up then some xrays may be necessary. The symptoms are not exactly typical of a foreign object but it's possible. Puppies can very easily eat things that they should not. You would usually expect vomiting, but not always.

It is also possible that he is just maturing. If he is done the bulk of his growing then he may have a reduced appetite. But, it sounds like this is a little more drastic than that. Plus, at 7 months he should still have some growing to do.

The shedding could very well be normal for this time of year, or it could be indicative of an underlying problem. Unfortunately there is no way to say for certain why it is happening.

I wish I could give you an exact answer, but hopefully this helps.

Dr. Marie.



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Disclaimer: Although Dr. Marie is a qualified veterinarian, the information found on this site is not meant to replace the advice of your own veterinarian. AskAVetQuestion.com and Dr. Marie do not accept any responsibility for any loss, damage, injury, death, or disease which may arise from reliance on information contained on this site. Do not use information found on this site for diagnosing or treating your pet. Anything you read here is for information only.

Customer reply:

Thanks for the quick response . I just tried switching his food . My neighbor gave me some food which is a kibble vs his old granular food. He did not hesitate and began chomping away. He didn't finish the whole 2 cups. he left a little in his bowl. I will try this for the next few days. I think this is a good sign. But him not finishing his food makes me think if there is something wrong. Do you think i am over thinking ?


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

Who knows! :)

If there is something wrong then you will find that his appetite starts to decline again after a couple of days on the new food. If this happens I would ask your vet to run some bloodwork and maybe xrays.



Customer reply:

thanks Dr. Marie for the advice .


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Dr. MarieDr. Marie is a veterinarian who practices in a busy animal hospital in Ottawa, Ontario. She created Ask A Vet Question as a resource for good, accurate veterinary advice online. Dr. Marie treats dogs, cats, hamsters, guinea pigs, and rats. She has been a vet since 1999.

Is an online vet visit just as good as a trip to your veterinarian? No! But, many times, asking an online veterinarian a question can help save you money. While Dr. Marie can't officially diagnose your pet or prescribe medications, she can often advise you on whether a vet visit is necessary. You can also ask Dr. Marie for a second opinion on your pet's condition.