Many dogs eagerly await their meals and quickly finish their ration. And it is not uncommon for them to ask their owners to eat between meals! We invite you to discover why is your dog begging for food and the solutions that exist to mitigate this behavior.
Why is my dog crying out for food?
There are several causes that may explain your dog’s constant craving for food:
The quality of the kibble: standard quality foods are often rich in carbohydrates, quickly metabolized, which makes your dog feel hungry more quickly.
The quantities of food provided may be insufficient: the instructions indicated on the kibble packets are indicative. They are to be modulated according to the activity of the animal and its physiological status (moulting, lactation, etc.). The amount of food given may also be insufficient volume in the stomach to make the animal feel full. This is the case, for example, with dieting dogs for which rations are reduced.
- Intestinal parasitism: digestive worms can “rob” part of the ration and thus increase the feeling of hunger.
- Boredom and anxiety
- Systemic diseases responsible for polyphagia (increased hunger with an absence of satiety): they are generally accompanied by other symptoms (diarrhea, weight loss, etc.)
Finally, your dog may just be greedy and wants to eat because he knows you are going to feed him.
Know that dogs are sensitive to the attention humans give them: dogs are able to understand who pays them the most attention. They will thus ask the most attentive person to eat!
Dog begging for food: causes and solutions
First of all, it is important not to reinforce your dog’s behavior. If you feed him every time he asks, he’ll do it again!
It is recommended to feed your dog with Premium kibble: these are high quality foods that provide your dog with all the necessary elements and give him a feeling of fullness.
The kibble must be adapted to the physiological status of the animal (growth, gestation, lactation, senior, etc.).
To find out how much to feed him each day, don’t hesitate to ask your vet for a ration calculation! The quantities will take into account your dog’s activity, his lifestyle (outdoor life, etc …), his breed, if he is sterilized or overweight, etc …
For overweight dogs, if you continue to feed them unsterilized adult dog food, the amounts to feed may be low and your dog will probably not be full. In this case, it is advisable to feed your dog with light or diet food (on veterinary prescription). It is also possible to add courgettes or green beans cooked in water, in small quantities and without fat, so as not to unbalance your ration.
Parasites can cause more or less serious disorders on the health of our canine companions. Deworming is therefore important to preserve the health of your dog. The worms present in the digestive tract can indeed rob certain nutrients of the dog’s diet, and then cause weight loss and deficiencies despite an excellent quality diet and therefore weaken the animal.
Deworming allows the dog to have a more efficient immune system (which defends it against diseases), it avoids intestinal and dermatological problems (digestive worms can be responsible for hair loss, itching) as well as vitamin deficiencies and minerals.
It should be treated preventively, because we very rarely see the worms in the stool, even if they are present in the intestine. Be aware that some worms can be transmitted to young puppies through breast milk, or even before they are born, through the placenta. This explains the specific deworming protocols in puppies, as well as in pregnant and lactating dogs.
Deworming your dog also helps prevent you or your children from becoming infected!
Dog begging for food: Is your canine friend bored?
Boredom in dogs can lead to increased food consumption. To fight boredom, we recommend that you enrich your dog’s environment with appropriate toys. We especially recommend educational toys that stimulate their cognitive abilities.
It may also be interesting to stimulate the olfactory capacities of your animal (tracking activity for example).
Why choose a suitable toy for dogs?
It is advisable to offer your dog suitable toys. Indeed, when dogs have fun with inappropriate objects, they expose themselves to various risks such as:
Injuries in the mouth (case of the dog having fun with sticks).
Digestive obstruction, if the dog swallows an inedible object (stone, sock, etc.) or pieces of a toy.
Pain in the musculoskeletal system (neck pain, back pain, etc.), when the dog pulls hard on the toys, jumps too high, etc.
To keep the game fun, it is recommended to play with toys specially designed for dogs. The choice of toy depends on the size of the dog and its behavior (destructive or not).
Furthermore, there is no such thing as zero risk: the condition of the toy will have to be checked regularly and your dog will have to be monitored when he is playing with one, at least in the early stages.
Anxiety may be the source
Know that the main stress factors in dogs are a lack of physical and cognitive activity. It is therefore important to meet the needs of your animal for its well-being. The solutions are similar to those for dealing with boredom.
In addition, it is possible to install a diffuser of pheromones or soothing essential oils that will help reduce dogs’ anxiety. There are also anti-stress food supplements, such as Zylkene, for example, which help animals cope better with stressful situations.
Food supplements and diffusers must always be combined with environmental measures for best results. Do not hesitate to seek advice from your attending veterinarian.
Certain diseases can be responsible for polyphagia (intestinal disorders, endocrine diseases, etc.). A consultation with the veterinarian will highlight these diseases. Additional examinations are generally necessary to establish a diagnosis (blood test for example).