I understand that if the German shepherd suddenly stopped eating, you'll want to understand why and also what you can do about it. After having to deal it a few times, I've gleaned some wisdom that I wish I'd had when it first happened to me.
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The most common reasons German Shepherds cease eating are discussed in this article, along with the most effective solutions.
You’re German shepherd Isn't Eating for These 6 Reasons
If the Shepherd has quit consuming, one or more of the six main causes is likely to be at blame. It's possible that after going over each one in great detail, you'll recognize a pattern. The most effective solutions will be presented in the next section.
He doesn't like what he's eating
It can be difficult to locate food that is suitable for German Shepherds because of their sensitive tummies. It seems like just when you believe you've got the right item, he begins to question it.
A sensible German shepherd will not consume something that is making them sick or miserable. It's not unusual for pets to reject food if they've previously been sickened by it.
If it is, how do you know? You should keep a close eye on the GSD during or after meals if you're introducing new foods to your GSD right now. As soon as the food bowl is removed, you'll know if he's behaving abnormally. After consuming it, does he get diarrhea, nausea, or look to be "under the weather."
He isn't doing enough exercise
The German shepherd is a hard-working, athletic dog that enjoys a good workout. Ideally, German Shepherds should be exercised for at least two hours a day.
Due to German Shepherds' long history of intense activity, their bodies & metabolisms have adapted accordingly, making them extremely effective at utilizing food for long-term energy.
If the German shepherd isn't getting enough exercise, he's not going to be hungry.
Dogs like GSDs are so active that their general health depends on regular exercise. Exercise has a direct impact on a person's appetite, but it's just one of several factors.
There is no set schedule for feedings each day
Just not German Shepherds, but all dogs, really, are creatures of habit. Routines help them understand the day and become more at ease in their surroundings, making it easier for them to adjust.
Once during the morning and then at night, it's critical to set two proper meal times and keep to them. A typical feeding schedule for adult GSDs is twice a day. This can vary greatly between puppies.
You should not allow your German shepherd to day graze. Treats and nibbles shouldn't be plentiful, and his dinner shouldn't sit out for him just to pick at.
When you stick to a schedule, you teach the German shepherd to get hungry at specific times. There you go! It's actually true!
He's fed up with the food he eats
Boredom is a little trickier to diagnose. However, it's possible.
If he's been consuming the same thing for a time, your GSD may be getting bored and stop eating it altogether. Boredom is usually a gradual process that has no evident negative consequences. If you notice signs of illness in your GSD, you can rule out boredom as the cause.
If he immediately perk up when fed alternative food, then you know he's merely bored. The food could be tabletop scrabs or something else entirely.
Boredom can easily be alleviated by just following a rotating diet. The next part will explain what it is if you aren't already familiar with it.
He feels uneasy in this setting
Canine survival instincts sneak into our daily lives in ways we don't even recognize since they are such sensitive animals. When your dog isn't at ease, it will show in his behavior, just as it does in humans.
What constitutes a shift in the status quo? New neighbors, pets, family members joining or departing, or even relocating themselves are all examples of a shift in the surrounding environment.
German Shepherds won't eat or drink if they don't feel confident in their environment or if they are uncertain about something.
Think on what has changed in your immediate surroundings. The German shepherd will soon adapt to the new situation and return to his or her normal demeanor.
He has unresolved medical difficulties
There are a slew of medical conditions that can result in a person not eating or having an insatiable hunger.
If you detect any other strange behavior in your GSD, you should make an appointment with the veterinarian as quickly as possible. This does not guarantee that this is the case with your GSD.
If your GSD is healthy, he must be consuming by end of second day if he hasn't been diagnosed with a medical issue. When there are health difficulties, this alters. After two days without food, you should take your German shepherd to the vet for help.
How to Restore Eating Behavior in a GSD
Get the German shepherd to eat again by following these tips. Remember that if you do have any reservations about your pet's health, it's always better to see your veterinarian first.
To begin with, make sure his food is free of common allergies and switch brands.
Having a delicate stomach is the most likely reason why your German shepherd isn't enjoying his food. If that's the case, you'll want to exercise greater caution when selecting your next brand.
Many common dog food allergens could be the source of the problems. Chicken is by far the most egregious offender. Isn't it true that meats like chicken, pig, and lamb are all common allergens?
Duck, salmon, and turkey should be the primary source of protein in a premium pet food brand. Chicken, on the other hand, is more difficult to digest and can lead to more problems.
A high-protein, low-to-moderate fat, and low-to-no carbohydrate diet is recommended. To help your GSD's stomach rebuild power, you should limit the amount of fat in your diet until it is able to be digested again. Normally, fat should range from medium to high.
Try feeding your dog a food that's specifically designed for dogs with sensitive stomachs. For sensitive skin and stomachs, we recommend Purina Pro Salmon.
Follow an 80/20 dry kibble to moist dog food ratio for the best results. 2.
To improve nutrition and water intake, doctors often recommend adding a tiny quantity of kibble to wet dog food. It also makes the food taste better.
There are less preservatives and additives in wet dog food, making it tastier, juicier, and higher in protein. It will be impossible for the German shepherd to resist if you add a small quantity at each meals.
Because wet dog food is particularly calorie-dense, you should limit the amount you feed your pet. Overdosing will also have the inverse result and could even cause digestive issues in your GSD.
Make sure he gets enough exercise
Be certain to reevaluate the GSD's existing exercise schedule after discussing the importance of exercise to your GSD.
Is he ever going to get enough of you? A Shepherd in peak condition requires more time than 1 hour of your time. GSDs are generally advised to get at least two hours of exercise each day, and in certain cases much more.
In order for this breed to maintain a healthy appetite, they must engage in regular physical activity.
Consider the circumstances in which he lives
Have you relocated the food dish in the last few months? He might be able to stop eating if he saw anything like this...
If you've actually moved the bowl, try moving it back and just see what happens alternatively, you might try and move the bowl to a new location to see if it helps. I've tried this myself with huskies, and shifting the bowl of food was all that was needed to get them to eat.
Allow your dog to eat alone if you have little children. Even if they have the best of intentions, their continual nagging, being overly loud, or even simply being in the vicinity of your GSD may be deterring him from eating.
Eating in a time-limited manner
Try time-restricted eating if you think the German shepherd is being fussy.
It just takes 10 minutes to set the bowl of food down before removing it for the next mealtime. It may be difficult at first, or you may feel bad about it, but if you stick with it, he must be prepared to consume again by the following mealtime.
You can bet that by the time of the next meal, his survival instincts will have set in, and he'll be more eager to eat when you put his meal down, or else it will be withdrawn.
Many individuals I know, including myself, have given it a shot, and it usually works the first time. For other folks, this even solved a few months of fussy eating after they tried it.
Keep in mind that you should never feed your pet outdated kibble. Do not eliminate more than two consecutive mealtimes. Your veterinarian should be on the calendar after two. As a reminder, "no healthy dog will willingly starve themselves".
However, the rotating diet is a simple and effective method of achieving weight loss. At the very least, you should have two different brands of kibble that you know the GSD like.
Having at least 2 distinct kinds of kibble is enough to ensure that your dog gets a varied diet every single month. For one month, feed your dog the first kibble, then transition to the second kibble. And make the switch each month after that.
Many people find success by simply switching up the flavor while remaining with the same brand. You won't disturb his tummy by switching to a new formula this way.
Read, How to control a German shepherd shedding?