How Long Can a Dog Go Without Eating?

Dogs can sometimes refuse to eat food and that can be because of a medical condition or just a behavioral reason. Whichever the case may be, if you are a dog owner, you should be worried especially if your dog was healthy and not showing signs of sickness. Before we answer the question at hand, let us look at a dog’s digestive system.

What Can Cause Dogs Not to Eat?

There are several reasons that can cause your dog to go without food. Let us look at a few tips and how they can help.

  • If your dog is not eating, it might be a sign that it is sick which can affect the dog’s appetite and metabolism. Lack of appetite is a sign that your dog has a wider problem than you thought. If it has been more than 24 hours without the dog eating, you should visit a vet immediately.
  • New Surroundings. Some dogs may experience lack of appetite when their environment is changed, and this might put them off their food. This factor will however not last because once the dog settles in, it will resume its normal eating. But if it takes more than 2 days, you should consult with a vet.
  • Dental Problems. Dogs that normally turn down their nose when you give them food might have an underlying problem with their dentals. This is because it is difficult or painful for them to chew food. If you notice such a behavior, try and check for any dental problems. With that said, let us look at How Long Can a Dog Go Without Eating?

The length of time that a dog can go without eating will depend on one dog to another. Puppies and old dogs all have a different time that they can go without food. Different factors such as the dogs physical and mental health, the dog’s hydration, dogs last meal and the dogs age will all play a role.

How Long Can a Dog Go Without Eating

How Long Can a Dog Go Without Eating

Having that in mind, there is no specific set time that a dog can go without food but in general, a dog that is healthy can survive 3-5 days without eating anything. This assumption only works if the dog is not sick, elderly or a puppy. The time can be reduced significantly if the dog is old or sick.

You should never let your dog go for long periods without eating. If you realize a change in behavior on the way your dog eats, you should seek for medical help immediately. That could mean that your dog is undergoing illness that needs to be treated.


Our main takeaway here is how long can a dog go without food which we have seen to be around 3-5 days. But if your dog goes for 24 hours without eating, you should be concerned.  Try and find the reason why your dog is not eating or just visit your vet.

We will be happy to hear your thoughts

      Leave a reply

      A Pomsky