Are there times when your dog’s food is gone in a flash?
But they still find the time to beg at your table for some food.
If you noticed it then, you may have wondered,
“How can I help my dog stop this?”
Keep reading to discover:
- 9 reasons why your dog is always hungry.
- A step-by-step method to feeding puppies.
- The reason why pregnant dogs are hungry all the time.
- 3 serious diseases that cause your dog to get hungry all of a sudden.
- And many more…
Table of contents
Why is my dog always hungry all of a sudden?
Your dog gets hungry all of a sudden because it’s natural for them. It could also happen due to stress, anxiety, or learned behavior. Pregnant dogs, puppies, and high-energy dogs eat a lot. It can also happen because of health conditions like diabetes, hyperthyroidism, or Cushing’s disease.
9 reasons why your dog is always hungry all of a sudden
#1: It’s natural for them
In the old times, your doggo’s ancestors roamed the wild.
It was a harsh world where they ate when they could.
Food wasn’t always a sure thing.
So they had to adjust as hunters and even grazers of vegetation.
Interesting fact: Wild wolves still do it today. As this study of their summer poop tells us.
The researchers found that wolves ate:
- Hoofed animals.
This behavior might have survived in your pooch today.
And they feel the need to eat whenever they can because of this.
If your dog displays this behavior then they might also hide their food for later.
Or resource guard. Which is when they don’t let anyone near their food.
#2: Stress & anxiety
Did some changes happen in your home in the recent months?
Did your family move to a new place?
Has a family member moved out of the house?
Or is there a new puppy on the premises?
If so, this might be the cause of their sudden hunger.
“How does this affect my dog?”
Changes in your household dynamic have an effect on your pooch.
And this could be their way of coping with stress and anxiety.
According to the AKC, here are other signs of a stressed and anxious dog:
- Destructive behavior.
- Repetitive or compulsive actions.
- Indiscriminate pooping or peeing inside.
#3: A growing pup
Did you just get a new puppy?
And don’t get alarmed when they eat. A. Lot.
It’s normal for them because they’re still growing.
Your pup will need lots of nutritious food.
VCA tells us that a good diet is crucial for your puppy.
“How do I make sure that I’m feeding my pup right?”
First, puppies should eat 3 to 4 times per day.
And they should have food formulated for puppies.
Don’t feed them adult dog food.
They have different nutritional needs.
And you can cause deficiencies in your puppy if you do this.
Their diet should have omega-3 fatty acids.
It should also have DHA (docosahexaenoic acid). Which is important for eye and brain development.
#4: Bun in the oven
Female dogs often eat a lot during and after pregnancy.
But this also means that the puppies are getting bigger. And there isn’t much room for food.
So the AKC says that her food should be:
- Very palatable.
- Good quality.
- Highly digestible.
It must also be food intended to boost growth and lactation.
The momma dog has to gain weight by 15% – 25% before she gives birth.
This prepares her body for feeding her puppies.
Many mother dogs often get malnourished after giving birth.
Because there aren’t enough nutrients in their food to sustain milk production.
Note: If you have a pregnant dog take her for regular vet checkups.
This ensures that the puppies are growing well.
And more importantly, you can also monitor momma dog’s health.
#5: High-energy pooch
Does your dog have all the energy in the world?
If your answer’s yes, then this can be the reason why they get hungry.
This also happens with dogs who train for sports competitions such as:
- Field trials.
- Scent work.
- Hunting tests.
- Herding trials.
- Lure coursing.
- Dock diving events.
- Flyball tournaments.
The amount of exercise is an important factor to consider in a dog’s diet.
Give too little food and your pooch will not have enough energy to go through their sport.
Or the nutrition to support their body and bones. Especially as dog sports cause damage to their bones and joints.
Aside from exercise level, other factors also affect their diet.
- Allergies or sensitivities.
Further reading: 17 Hyperactive Dog Symptoms + 11 Tips To Calm Down Your Dog
#6: Diabetes mellitus
MSD Manual states that diabetes is a common disease in cats and dogs.
It happens because of a defect in their endocrine system. Where there is an insulin deficiency.
And this disease happens in:
- Certain breeds.
- Middle-aged pooches.
- Female dogs more than males.
Interesting fact: This study found that vets diagnose diabetes more in the winter months. This is a pattern also found in human diabetic patients.
“What are the breeds affected by diabetes?”
Don’t get me wrong. It can happen to all dogs and all breeds.
But it seems to happen more in these breeds:
- Cairn Terriers.
- Miniature Poodles.
“What are the signs of this disease?”
Dogs who have this will often display the following:
- Weight loss.
- Cloudy eyes.
- Increased urination.
- Recurring infections.
- Excessive water drinking.
- Increased/decreased appetite.
Warning: Take your dog to the vet if they display these signs.
According to AVMA, your doggo’s test has to reveal hyperglycemia and glucosuria.
But as these signs also point to other illnesses, there may be additional tests.
Such as blood tests for other medical conditions. Or a urine culture to check for urinary tract infections.
“How is diabetes treated?’
Once it’s confirmed, your vet will prescribe an insulin shot for your doggo.
But it’s an ongoing battle. And for some dogs it’s all of their life.
You will have to get regular tests to monitor your pooch.
Vets will usually recommend the following for management:
- Daily exercise.
- High-fiber diet.
- Spaying (for female dogs).
WSU says that the thyroid is in a dog’s neck. And it’s responsible for a lot of hormone production.
This condition happens when there is too much production of the thyroid hormone. It increases their metabolism rate.
It’s a serious disease. But it doesn’t affect a lot of dogs.
The primary cause of this is a form of cancer called thyroid carcinoma.
So treatment will include:
- Radiation treatments.
“How do I know if my dog has this?”
The AKC states that affected dogs will display these signs:
- Weight loss.
- Fast heart rate.
- Enlarged heart.
- Heart murmurs.
- Increased appetite.
- Increased urination.
- Shortness of breath.
- Large thyroid gland.
- Congestive heart failure.
- An increased amount of poop.
“Is hyperthyroidism a treatable condition?”
According to Southwind Animal Hospital, the prognosis is good. If, and only if the vet or the dog parent catches the disease early.
With the right treatment, dogs can live longer.
But if it’s in the late stage, dogs have a poor to grave diagnosis.
Meaning that it may be too late. As cancer can spread rapidly to other body parts.
#8: Cushing’s disease
When you have a senior dog, they don’t have the same metabolism rate as puppies.
So it’s more likely that older dogs won’t want to eat as much as younger ones.
But there is one illness that happens in older dogs.
It’s called Cushing’s disease.
“What goes wrong with an affected dog’s body?”
Cushing’s disease means that there is an overproduction of the hormone cortisol.
In the right amounts, cortisol helps the body manage stressful situations. It increases blood sugar levels.
But an overproduction means that the dog’s at risk for other serious conditions. Like
- Blood clots.
- Kidney damage.
- High blood pressure.
“What causes Cushing’s disease?”
Huntersville Vet explains that it’s caused by either of these 3:
- Adrenal tumor (rare).
- Prolonged steroid use.
- Pituitary tumor (common).
Here are the common signs:
- Hair loss.
- Thinning of skin.
- Muscle weakness.
- Frequent urination.
- Excessive drinking.
- Enlarged abdomen.
“What are the treatments for this disease?”
Most vets will recommend medications for Cushing’s.
These will help to lessen the cortisol production in the adrenal gland or the pituitary.
It’s because there are a lot of risks in the surgery. Depending on the location, it’s difficult to remove.
#9: Learned behavior
At times, your dog displays hunger because they learned you give food to them.
Even before they take out their puppy dog eyes.
This becomes embedded into their mind. And they remember it for a long time.
Even when other dogs in the house don’t act like that.
According to this study, once dogs have enough training, they keep doing what their trainer told them.
The researchers also said that most mammals will follow what others of the same species would do.
But with dogs, the experiment showed that they did not.