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Why Is My Puppy Always Hungry?

Why is My Puppy Always Hungry?

 

If you’re left pondering “my dog is constantly looking for food and I don’t know why”, the answer isn’t as simple as a “yes” or a “no”, unfortunately. There are quite a few reasons that you could be questioning “why is my puppy so hungry all of a sudden?” or even wondering if they feel satiation in the same way we do.

After all, there is a reason we don’t wander off on a weekend getaway and leave enough food out to tide our hungry pups over until we return. Of course, we always want our favourite members of the family by our side, but sometimes it isn’t an option. So, we take them to a pet sitter for all their love, care and attention. Why should we be the only ones to enjoy a weekend of rest?

With that, we wanted to bring this article here to answer the questions that are nibbling away at the kibble. Whether it’s simply deciphering the right portions for a growing pup or checking to see if there are any other aspects of doggy life that could point to a condition for the food-obsessed dog breeds.

How Much Food Should I Be Giving My Puppy?

At Hiputee we know walking down the food aisle can be information overload. There is no straightforward answer as all puppies are different.

So, the team here at Hiputee wanted to reduce that information overload and give you a table with a rough feeding guide, based on the weight of your new friend:


Weight

6-12 Weeks Old (cups per day)

13-16 Weeks Old (cups per day)

3-5 lbs 

1-1 1/3 

3/4-1

5-10 lbs

1 1/3-2 1/2

1-2

10-20 lbs

2 1/2-4

2-3 1/2

20-30 lbs

4-5

3 1/3-4 1/2

30 lbs+

5 3/4-6 1/2

4 ½-5 3/4

 

Why is My Puppy so Hungry All of a Sudden?

It might seem as though your little pup is hungry all the time and in bouts that can feel sudden. 

But the reason for this is that your furry friend is growing 20 times faster than a mature dog. So, they’ll need a lot more energy to get them through that growth. 

With that, it’s ideal to be feeding them four meals a day (up until 4 months old, that is). Then this amount should be reduced to three meals a day (until they are 6 months old). Finally, it’s a case of reducing meals down to two meals a day as they’re a mature barker now. That tail won’t stop wagging so don’t feel guilty about reducing meals.

That said, if you’re still questioning “why is my puppy so hungry all of a sudden”, it is possible that meals have been reduced too quickly. Speak to your vet about any feeding concerns. They will be happy to help tailor a plan to your puppy’s individual needs.

What Are the Top Food-Obsessed Dog Breeds?

Before we get going, we thought it was important you’re aware of the food-obsessed dog breeds out there. Yep, that’s right! There are several pooch purebreds out there who have more of a natural instinct to eat everything in front of them and try to find even more. 

Even though you don’t have to worry about leaving snacks on the kitchen counter, you do have to worry about the Dachshund breed. These crafty pups can soon become little porkers, as one of the food-obsessed dog breeds. 

They won’t stop begging until they get the best food off your plate. Despite being the perfect lap dog, they are prone to Cushing’s Syndrome. So, it’s vital you keep a close eye when realising your dog is constantly looking for food.

Another one to keep your eye on is the Labrador. You probably won’t be surprised to learn that they are one of the top food-obsessed dog breeds out there. And they’ll go to all lengths to keep on snacking. 

In fact, some Labradors (not all) carry a genetic gene that prevents their brain from recognising the feeling of a full tummy. That said, your pup loves an outdoor lifestyle so to combat this, simply keep them active and away from those pesky treats!

How Should I Handle a Hungry Dog?

“My dog is constantly looking for food” is a popular thing we hear. And one of the most common reasons behind it is an inconsistent food schedule. So, it’s important your pup has a regular feeding schedule the whole family can stick to. If you don’t follow a set timetable, your pooch will go and hunt for the next tasty snack without you.

It’s important your dog doesn’t get any treats in-between meals, no matter how cute they are. Just like us, our pups can fill-up on treats and miss an important meal. Then, it just leaves them “hangry” later in the day.

Your pup might also be in a rush to eat everything in its bowl and set a new world record for the fastest meal. With this, if you’re lucky enough to have more than one dog, it’s important to separate them at feeding time. This is because your pooch may need some alone time if they are worried about competition from its older siblings. 

So, to avoid always thinking “my dog is constantly looking for food again”, it’s important to spot these signs and create some space for your little friend.

If your pooch is overly enthusiastic around food (we can all relate to this) then there are things on the market to curb this excitement. For instance, you could use a slow-feeder bowl! This works as a puzzle as it separates the food and encourages slower eating which will help with digestion and a happier tummy.

Can I Give My Dog Too Many Treats?

Food-obsessed dog breeds aren’t a myth. Our pups are crafty and figure out very quickly who will give them a cheeky treat under the table. With that, you will very soon know which family member is guilty because your pup will sit next to them during mealtime.

And while it may be all fun and games now with a treat here and there seeming harmless, but too many could cause obesity and other behavioural issues like:

  • Demanding treats
  • Aggression around food (particularly with other dogs)
  • Lack of concentration whilst training
  • Confusion over who the ‘pack leader’ is

 

That said, it’s also worth noting what’s in the foods you’re feeding your barking bud and why they might be causing you to say, “my dog is always looking for food”. And it’s all because treats don’t tend to be nutrition-rich or even nutritionally-focussed.

So, if you find you have one of the food-obsessed dog breeds, you’ll want to look for some of the protein-rich and carbohydrate-low foods and treats on the market. This will help them feel fuller for longer!

How Do I Know If My Dog Has an Underlying Condition?

Nobody wants their pooch to be poorly. When it comes to food, things can be a little difficult at first. It’s important to know what is normal for your pup. 

For example, if your little friend is itching and scratching after food, it could be a sign they have an allergy to some ingredients despite wolfing down their breakfast.

There may even be some health-related culprits causing your dog to overeat with their food obsession. Such as Cushing’s syndrome, diabetes or parasites. As well as this, there are gastrointestinal issues that can lead to poor absorption of important nutrients, leaving you deflated and thinking “my dog is constantly looking for food”.

There are many tell-tale signs that your pup might be suffering from an underlying condition. We’ve listed some below as a quick check:

  • A dull coat
  • Hair loss
  • Increased thirst
  • Lethargic 
  • Cloudy eyes

How Do I Know If I Am Overfeeding My Puppy?

It is important to know your puppy can eat too much food despite you thinking “why is my puppy so hungry all of a sudden?”. 

Just like us owners, overeating can cause bloating and certain health issues other than tipping the scales. Food-obsessed dog breeds tend to have eyes bigger than their bellies. With that, our pups often believe they need more food than necessary.

Overfeeding your four-legged friend can be just as dangerous as not feeding them enough. And that’s why it’s important to be able to recognise the signs of a dog that is eating too much food (aside from looking at the amount of food in their bowl). Falling for those loveable eyes can lead to medical and long-term conditions including:

  • Obesity
  • Rapid bone growth
  • Diabetes
  • Lethargy
  • Abdominal pain

 

If your puppy is heavier than the average weight in comparison to the typical breed standards it is likely that they are nibbling on too many calories throughout the day (this includes treats).

If you often ask yourself “why is my dog always looking for food?”, you will most likely be in a habit of feeding your pup. It’s no secret that boredom can often lead to a snack break! So, to end this pesky habit, offer your pup playtime with a toy like our Knotted Durable Teething Dumble Rope as an alternative distraction. This is also a great way to get your pup moving and burning off some puppy fat.

So, there you go! A quick guide into the food-obsessed dog breeds, what you should be feeding the average fluffy friend in your home, the possibility of underlying conditions and more. With that, you can now enjoy the excitement of a new best friend without worrying about any of the pesky food troubles. 

It’s time to get back to that tail wagging!

Here at Hiputee, we recommend replacing food treats with other non-food related treats for a quick serotonin boost. For example, toys, walks, playtime, visitors or new cosy corners kitted out with the comfiest of dog beds. 

Have a look over at our toys for inspiration or even our dog beds for a new present. That said, if you want to learn even more about your dog and their wagging ways, read our other articles in the Hiputee library. We’ve got everything from treating infections and teaching a trick to finding the right pad for them to relax on.