Have your ever given your dog its food, only to have your pet finish and then stare at you like its starving for more? If this happens on a regular basis, you're probably wondering what's going on. The good news is as long as you're following the feeding guidelines on the food's bag, chances are your dog is getting plenty of food. But since dogs of all breeds are known for doing the "I'm still hungry" act, we want to dig a little deeper into this issue.
Understanding If Your Dog is Actually Hungry or Just Bluffing
The most common explanation for dogs that always act like they're hungry is this behavior can be traced back to wolves that basically domesticated themselves. This process resulted in these animals looking at humans as a source of food. Between that ingrained behavior, as well as dogs’ instincts to hunt and view food as scarce, the outcome for some dogs is they want to scarf down any bit of food that a human touches.
For a dog that hasn't always acted hungry but begins showing this behavior out of the blue, there's a good chance it's the symptom of a specific condition. Possible conditions include a reaction to medication, hyperthyroidism, exocrine pancreatic insufficiency, diabetes, Cushing’s disease or bacterial overgrowth in the intestines. Given the serious nature of these different conditions, it's important to discuss a sudden appetite increase with your vet.
The Smart Way to Feed Your Dog
Even though it can be tempting to give in to your dog and let it eat table scraps, that's not good for its health. As long as you know that your dog is simply acting hungry, there are three main things you can do for it. The first is to provide a consistent eating schedule. Second, give your pet quality dog food. By choosing any of our blends, you can be know that your dog is getting all the essential nutrients it needs. We even have a specific blend for less active/senior dogs that provides the nutritional levels established by the AAFCO dog food nutrient profiles for the "Maintenance" stage.
The last thing you can do is be smart about treats for your pet. Even though table scraps aren't a good idea, there are healthy pet treats that you can give to your dog in moderation. If you have any other questions about your dog's eating habits or nutritional requirements, feel free to ask us by calling 513-502-0407.