4 Reasons Your Dog Isn’t Eating & Possible Solutions

4 Reasons Your Dog Isn’t Eating & Possible Solutions

Is your dog always hungry? Do they act like they haven’t had a meal in days when it was breakfast just a few hours ago? If you live with others, do you have to give each other a heads up when you feed your dog lunch because your dog is giving a master class in acting sorrowful?

If your furry buddy’s appetite resembles a trash compactor, it can be concerning when they are not eating at their usual fast pace. In fact, they may not want to eat at all, which will definitely raise some red flags.

There can be several reasons your dog’s appetite is waning. Let’s discuss those possible reasons and possible solutions to help your dog get their appetite back.

Reason 1. Possible Blockage

This can be a scary reason for your dog not eating. If your dog is a regular at getting into things they shouldn’t, the possibility of them ingesting something that has blocked their digestive system can be high. Your dog may have ingested clothing like undies, socks, toys, or trash. You may (or may not) be surprised at what your dog may have ingested.

If your dog has ingested a foreign object that has now formed a blockage in their digestive system, your dog will likely not have an appetite. This might not be your first guess unless you saw your dog ingest something they shouldn’t. You may also notice that something is amiss — like a dish towel you know you placed on the counter.

Your dog may also have some additional symptoms if they are experiencing a blockage due to a foreign object. Additional symptoms may include:

  • Nausea/upset stomach
  • Diarrhea or constipation
  • Wincing or yelping when the abdomen is palpated
  • Not wanting to drink

A Possible Solution

If you suspect that your dog has ingested a foreign object that is now blocking their system, it is important to take your dog to the veterinarian right away. This constitutes an emergency as a blockage can be detrimental to your pup’s health.

Blockages prevent food and water from reaching the rest of your dog’s digestive system to nourish and hydrate their body. If a blockage is severe enough, it may also affect the blood flow in your dog’s body. The earlier the treatment, the better.

Your veterinarian will likely do an X-ray or an ultrasound to see if they can spot the blockage and determine what it is. They may also use a tiny camera passed through your dog’s mouth and down their throat to see if they can spot the blockage. Then, your vet might be able to determine the next steps depending on the blockage’s progression through the digestive tract or what the blockage actually consists of.

After all the factors are considered, your veterinarian may be able to remove the blockage by performing an endoscopy. They could use a tool threaded through a tube going down your dog’s throat to grab the object and pull it through their mouth. If the object is in their intestines, your veterinarian may need to remove the object surgically.

After it’s removed, your dog will be monitored to ensure that they are recovering as expected. They will need to take things slowly, and your veterinarian may recommend a special diet as their digestive system recovers.

Reason 2. Dental Issues

If your typically ravenous eater isn’t eating, check their teeth. If you have ever had a toothache, you know firsthand that the pain is not fun. Since our dogs are good at pretending they are not in pain, this dental problem may have been going on for some time before they show discomfort.

If you notice that your dog is leaving kibble behind, try to catch them in the act of eating later on. If they favor one side of their mouth or take smaller mouthfuls, they may be trying to avoid a certain area in their mouth. If your dog doesn’t let you feel their muzzle, they could possibly have a toothache. Dental disease is a common reason why a seemingly healthy dog might turn into a picky eater.

If your dog will allow you to take a look at their pearly whites, check for any signs of redness or inflammation. Excessive drooling is another sign of a toothache, as well as constantly licking their lips.

A Possible Solution

Suspected dental pain is a definite vet visit. If your dog shows signs of a toothache, it might have progressed and calls for a tooth extraction. The last thing we would also want is for a dog’s tooth to be infected and abscess. This is a very painful thing for your dog to go through, and the resulting infection can also spread to the rest of your dog’s body.

When it comes to anything dental, proactive prevention is the best medicine. Creating and maintaining a consistent dental routine for your dog keeps their teeth looking fresh and prevents tartar from developing into plaque. It also keeps that bad dog breath at bay!

Outside of dental issues, a few other health problems could be possible causes.

These could possibly include:

  • Kidney disease
  • Liver disease
  • Pancreatitis

Reason 3. Pickiness

As pet parents, we can all be guilty of feeding our dogs a little human food now and again. It takes a person of unimaginable strength to look into those big puppy eyes and turn away in refusal. As long as the piece is small and is safe for dogs, it is a nice treat to give every once in a while.

However, giving our dog too many table scraps can not only be harmful to our dog’s health and waistline but can create a “refined” palate in our dog. If your dog looks at their kibble in disgust and tries to get morsels from you, they may be trying to save room for your dinner. Instead of training your dog, it seems like they may have trained you.

People food is too rich for our dog’s digestive systems and can lead to weight concerns. It also encourages unwanted behavior in our dogs, like begging, as they are now encouraged to hang around and bet at mealtimes.

The same can be said for dog treats. It’s possible that your dog’s loss of appetite has more to do with their desire to eat treats than their vet-approved pet food.

Another long-term habit that can have untinted side effects is hand-feeding. Your pup might grow to like being waited on hand and paw too much and refuse to dine from their dog bowl.

A Possible Solution

A strong will is required to revert your pooch back to their dog food. It also takes patience and dedication to retrain them to want their kibble. Making your dog’s dry food more palatable is a great first step in changing the focus of their appetite from your plate back to theirs.

You can add beef or chicken broth to their kibble for extra flavor, as well as to soften up the kibble bits. Ensure the broth doesn’t contain any extra seasonings as they can be toxic to your dog. You can also mix in a little wet food or some vegetables. Sometimes even a little warm water can make the dish more enticing for a fussy eater.

Stay strong and don’t allow your dog to have any people-food, or extra treats, during this time.

If your dog’s eating habits don’t improve, it might be time to introduce a new food. It doesn’t even need to be canned food. After all, variety is the spice of life, and your furry family member might want to change the menu.

Reason 4. Stress

Have you ever realized that you haven’t eaten all day when you have had a busy or especially stressful day? It can be easy to forget to have a meal whenever your emotions are not at their norm.

If you notice your dog has not been touching their food, think about any big life events or changes in your dog’s routine. If there have been any big changes, your dog may be experiencing stress that is affecting their appetite.

A big stressor may be anxiety brought on by separation. This may be more common as we start to return to the office as the pandemic (knock on wood!) wanes down. While we were social distancing, our dogs loved that we were always home. Now that we are going back to work in-person, our dogs may miss us and feel worried when we are not by their side.

A big move or an addition to the family, either a new baby or new pet, may also make your dog feel a little extra anxious and not want to visit their food bowl as often. Rescue dogs or dogs in new homes might also feel less than hungry. If possible, try to keep them on the old food they ate before moving in with you to normalize their routine.

A Possible Solution

If you know that your dog is prone to separation anxiety, or if you are trying to prevent it from occurring, a little proactive planning will help your dog stay calm, collected, and still eating throughout the day.

If you have a pending back-to-office date, practice leaving the house for extended periods. Get your keys and depart in your car, only taking a short trip around the block and returning. Your dog will be comforted that you came back, and then you can start gradually leaving the house for longer stretches of time.

Once you leave for longer periods, you can give your dog a puzzle or treat toy to keep them occupied. Filling treats with healthy peanut butter or cheese spread will keep your furry buddy so busy they won’t even notice you’re gone!

Doggy cameras are great pieces of technology to have as well! You can peek in on your dog from time to time and even give them a little shout-out and treat. Providing your dog plenty of opportunities for physical activity can help ensure they are nice and worn out before you leave the house.

If you sense that your dog is still a little anxious, crate training can be effective. You are giving your dog their own space to rest and feel comforted. Try putting an article of worn clothing into your dog’s crate so they can smell your scent and feel comforted.

AskVet – A Solution You Can Count On

As pet parents, we may worry about our fur babies — they are family, after all. We may over-analyze every behavior thinking that something is going on with our favorite buddy.

While some concerns may not warrant a visit to the veterinarian, we still would like someone knowledgeable to speak with about our pet concerns.

If you’re looking for support, become a member of AskVet to discuss a nutrition plan or the underlying reason for your dog’s loss of appetite. Our CPLCs are available 24/7 to advise pet parents on all manners of care, wellness, nutrition, and lifestyle.

Our Certified Pet Lifestyle Coaches™ create Personalized Pet Plans and help you track their progress. From dogs to fish to cats to hamsters and all other non-human members of your family, AskVet is here to help your best friend live their best life every day.



Intestinal Blockages In Dogs: Causes & Treatment | New Ulm Vet

Know the Signs of Tooth Discomfort in Your Pet | Reed Animal Hospital

Behavioral Problems of Dogs | Merck Vet Manual

Finding a Healthy Weight for Your Cat: Weight Chart

Finding a Healthy Weight for Your Cat: Weight Chart

When you look at your cat, do you always wonder if they’re a healthy weight? If they need more or less food, and maybe some more exercise? Knowing how to balance their diet, exercise, play, and sleep needs are going to change depending on what cat you have. All cats are different and have different needs.

Some might be more physically active, meaning they need to intake more food on a daily basis to combat their high activity levels. Others tend to prefer sleeping in the sunshine or on your lap and might need to be watched to make sure they don’t snack more than is healthy.

Your cat is unique and adorable (and we are sure you already know this), so you might be surprised to find where your cat fits on the weight chart. Keep reading to learn more about finding a healthy weight for your cat.

What Is an “Average” Cat Weight?

Unfortunately, there is no such thing as an average cat weight. This is because there is no such this as an average cat. All cats are different in size and needs.

Therefore, it’s hard to determine what would be considered average. Certain cat breeds will have certain averages in weight and size, so it’s important that you understand the average for your cat’s specific breed and gender.

You might not even realize if your cat is overweight or underweight, but learning how to balance their nutrition and physical activity can help maintain their weight and keep them healthy. Cats can range from six pounds to 25 pounds, so make sure you are looking specifically into their breed’s average.

How Can You Determine a Healthy Cat Weight?

When you bring your cat to a vet, they might weigh them, but they will also determine if they are healthy with the Body Condition Scoring (BCS) System. This system allows for visible guidelines that can help determine whether your cat is at a healthy weight or not.

If you can significantly see your cat’s ribs and there is a jagged dip in their hips, they might be underweight. If your cat’s belly is round and protruding on the sides, with a large pouch underneath, they might be overweight.

Truthfully, it does come down to your specific cat breed’s average weight, so knowing what that is can be helpful. On average, a domestic cat might be healthiest around the ten pounds mark, but that range is by no means the law, nor is it set in stone.

What Is Considered Overweight for a Cat?

If you cannot see the outline of your cat’s body, and they seem to be round, with a skin pouch hanging from their underneaths, it might be time to work them onto a diet. They should have somewhat of an hourglass figure to them, so if this is not the case, you might run into health concerns later on. Keep in mind that some cats, like Bengals, naturally have a slight pooch under their bellies (thanks to their wild cat ancestors).

An overweight cat will be apparent, but they are also well-loved, so many people don’t consider it to be that much of an issue. A cat can easily gain weight if they are overeating and not getting enough exercise. Some cats are more chill than others, so you have to be on top of their diets more so than an active kitty.

What Is Considered Underweight for a Cat?

If a cat is happy and healthy, they are likely to want to eat and play, and their weight will reflect this. If you have recently taken in a stray cat or adopted a cat, you might be able to see their ribs more prominently. Getting your cat to a healthy weight will take some time and dedication, but if they are comfortable and trusting of you, they will be more apt to eat their food.

In order to help your cat reach a healthy weight, your feline friend might be recommended to eat more cat food or opt for a higher-calorie diet. You will still want to ensure your cat is getting plenty of exercise to keep their appetite up and learn how to maintain their weight.

Average Cat Weights by Breed

Here is a list of cat breed weight averages:

  • Domestic Shorthair cats: A healthy weight is between 6 and 12 pounds.
  • Persian cats: A healthy weight is between 7 and 14 pounds.
  • Devon Rex cats: A healthy weight is between 6 and 9 pounds.
  • Sphynx cats: A healthy weight is between 6 and 12 pounds.
  • American Shorthair cats: A healthy weight is between 7 and 12 pounds.
  • Munchkin cats: A healthy weight is between 4 and 9 pounds.
  • British Shorthair cats: A healthy weight is between 9 and 18 pounds.
  • Maine Coon cats: A healthy weight is between 8 and 20 pounds.

How Your Cat Can Maintain a Healthy Weight

If your cat is struggling with their weight, either they can’t keep it off, or they can’t gain any weight, there are things you can do to help them maintain it.

First of all, what you are feeding your cat will have a direct impact on their weight. You should discuss with your veterinarian if the food you are feeding your cat is nutritious enough. A well-balanced diet will ensure your cat is as healthy and happy as possible.

On top of a nutritious diet, exercise and play are really important to maintain a healthy weight. If your cat is known as a sedate breed, this might mean you actively play with them throughout the day to ensure they exercise. Soon, you’ll be an expert in wands and teasers, puzzle toys, and balls with delicate bells inside them.

If your cat is known to be active and energetic, this might not be as big of a problem. Though, an active kitty might get hungry easier. It’s critical that you don’t overfeed them, even if they are burning calories!

Checking with your vet for any underlying health-related issues might also explain some of your cat’s weight issues (if they have any). Understanding these underlying causes might make giving your cat a proper diet and exercise regime easier.

Your cat controls a lot in their own life, but you are likely the food supplier, so being mindful of what you’re giving your cat can ensure a happy life in the long run. Your cat may try to peer pressure into pulling out the snacks by yelling at 3 AM every morning, but stay strong. You can do this.

AskVet Can Help

To better understand your cat’s weight and health, consider signing up with AskVet, now for only $9.99/month. You will have access to vets who can answer all your cat-related questions (and all animal-related questions at that). Discussing your cat’s eating and exercise habits can give them a better understanding of what your cat might be going through and if you need to make changes for them.

With AskVet, you don’t have to worry about waiting for a vet appointment to get medical advice for your animal. Our services help you to protect your pet and keep them as healthy and happy as possible. Sign up today and see just what it is we are all about!



Body Condition Scoring (BCS) Systems | American Animal Hospital Association

Ideal Dog and Cat Weight Ranges | Pet Obesity Prevention

Feeding Your Cat | Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine

Possible Reasons Your Cat Has Dandruff & Some Solutions

Possible Reasons Your Cat Has Dandruff & Some Solutions

If you’re the pet parent of a furry feline, you know that cats are mostly self-sufficient when it comes to grooming. Although cats bathe and groom themselves, sometimes their diligent grooming isn’t enough, and they may develop some health issues.

One of these potential problems is cat dandruff. Not to worry — there are things you can do to recognize this problem and ensure that their health is maintained.

Continue reading to learn about what causes cat dandruff and a few possible treatments and solutions.

What Is Cat Dandruff?

Cat dandruff is similar to human dandruff. It is a condition that causes your cat’s skin to flake and become dry, which can be uncomfortable for them. This is normal when it occurs in small amounts, but large amounts of dandruff may require treatment as it could be a sign of underlying health issues.

Let’s talk about the potential causes of dandruff and some health issues it could indicate.

Why Does My Cat Have Dandruff?

Many factors can cause dandruff, ranging from the quality of your cat’s diet to skin infections. The treatment of your cat’s dandruff will vary based on the cause and severity.

Here are a few things that might be causing your cat’s dandruff:


Obesity can inhibit your cat’s ability to groom themselves, leading to a build-up of dandruff in certain areas of their body.


If your cat has arthritis, they may be uncomfortable, and avoid grooming. The decline in their usual grooming habits could increase the likelihood of dandruff. In this case, as with any other underlying condition, the dandruff should improve once the arthritis is treated.


Additionally, skin and fungal infections can play a role in developing dandruff as they cause trauma to your cat’s skin. The treatment of these infections will differ based on the type of infection, but treating the infection should resolve the dandruff.

External Parasites and the Cheyletiella Mite

External parasites can cause dandruff by feeding off of skin cells. Most parasites can be managed with flea treatments, but there is one particular parasite you should be wary of.

The Cheyletiella mite is contagious and can result in skin irritation as well as hair loss and sores if your cat reacts by scratching or over-grooming to soothe themselves. It is also referred to as Cheyletiellosis or walking dandruff because the mites move along the skin.


If the air in your home is dry, it could be taking the moisture out of your cat’s skin. This can cause dandruff and worsen dandruff that may already be present.


Your cat’s diet can affect skin and coat health drastically. Certain deficiencies in their diet can lead to dandruff, but there are changes to their food that you can make to prevent it.

Possible Solutions for Cat Dandruff

If your cat has dandruff, it is best to discuss options with your vet before attempting to treat it. They can help you determine the condition’s source and guide your cat back to their normal, happy self.

Here are a few things your vet might suggest:

Use a Humidifier

Using a humidifier in your home can add moisture to the air, reducing the chances of dandruff.

Keep Them Hydrated

Increasing your cat’s water consumption could also help. One way to do this is by adjusting their diet to include wet food. You could also purchase a drinking fountain as some cats prefer running water over a water bowl.

Try Topical Products

Topical products such as sprays and shampoos can assist in moisturizing your cat’s skin. It is essential to only use products meant for animals, as products meant for humans could contain chemicals and other ingredients that may be harmful to your cat.

Help With Grooming

If they are struggling to groom themselves, brushing your cat on a regular basis can remove dandruff while spreading the skin’s natural oils. This can be relaxing for them as it massages the skin and supports blood flow.

Flea Treatment

If external parasites such as fleas are the cause, your vet might recommend a form of flea and tick treatment to get rid of the pests. Talk to your vet to find the best option for your cat.

Weight Loss

If obesity is the main factor in their dandruff, your vet may suggest steps to help your cat lose weight. This could include changes to their diet or incorporating exercise into their routine. Consult your DVM before making these adjustments, as your cat’s age and breed are important factors in their ideal body weight.

Weight Loss Basics

There are several changes you can make to your cat’s lifestyle to help them lose weight and maintain a healthy weight.

Some possible solutions include:

  • Use an automatic feeder: Automatic feeders measure and release a preset amount of food every day, which can help prevent overeating.
  • Increase playtime: Adding play to their daily routine can help burn calories naturally. Try a variety of different toys to keep things interesting.
  • Use treat toys: Treat toys are another way to stimulate physical activity. This forces your cat to exercise in order to get treats, keeping them distracted as they gradually lose weight.
  • Go for walks: If your cat enjoys being outside, you might want to take them on walks. It is safest to use a harness and leash instead of a collar. Using treats as an incentive while they get used to the leash can make leash training easier and more enjoyable.
  • Adjust their feeding schedule: Feeding them once a day may increase overeating, as they could become more hungry throughout the day afterward. Rather than having one specific feeding time, try separating their normal amount of food into smaller meals and feeding them multiple times per day.
  • Move their litter box and bowls: For cats who aren’t inclined to spend time outdoors, changing the location of their bowls and litter box frequently encourages movement as they have to search for them daily.

Other Solutions

While you should always talk to your vet before making changes to your cat’s lifestyle, there are several products and treatments you can use at home once your vet determines the source of your cat’s dandruff.

Let’s talk about a few of them:

Flea Treatments

You can choose which flea treatment to use based on what your cat might be most comfortable with. Some treatments are topical products that are applied directly to the skin, while other treatments come in the form of oral tablets or flea prevention collars.

Here are a few options:

  • Flea prevention collar: Collars such as this one can be an easy way to treat and prevent fleas.
  • Chewable tablets: Oral flea preventatives are a great option if your cat is comfortable with taking medications by mouth.
  • Topical flea treatments: Topical flea treatments can be effective as long as they are applied to an area of the body where the cat won’t remove the medicine from their fur during grooming. Applying the treatment under the skin on the top of their head works best.

Grooming Brushes

You can use several different types of grooming brushes. Before starting your at-home feline spa, consider your cat’s temperament, age, and fur type when looking for the right brush.

Here are some options:

  • Soft-bristled brushes: These work well for cats with sensitive or dry skin. It is used primarily on the top coat and won’t cause further skin irritation. It can also distribute skin oils which naturally help moisturize the skin.
  • Rubber brush: These may be more comfortable for your cat if other brushes, such as metal brushes, are too harsh.

Ask for Professional Advice

Cat dandruff isn’t fun for anyone. It’s not fun for us, and it’s certainly not fun for our feline friends. If you are looking for some guidance and tips on pet care (from your cat to your lizard to fish — basically, the whole menagerie), you can rely on AskVet.

Access 360° Pet Care with AskVet for $9.99 a month.



Don’t Brush Off Feline Dandruff | CVMBS News

Pet Dandruff: Causes & How to Prevent Its Buildup | VetDERM Clinic

Dandruff – Cat Owners | Pets and Parasites

The Dos and Don’ts of Walking Your Cat | Texas Humane Heroes

Is Salt Bad for Dogs? A Nuanced Answer 

Is Salt Bad for Dogs? A Nuanced Answer

As pet parents, our dog’s health is our main priority. We’re always Googling “Can my dog eat…” followed by whatever snack our dogs are sadly watching us eat. However, some snacks are deceptive. While it may seem like a safe food, it could be hiding a lot of salt.

Feeding your dog an excessive amount of salty food is not good for their health. However, your dog still does need salt and sodium in their diet to keep them functioning properly. It comes down to this: Salt in moderation.

Of course, foods that your dog eats or might snack on might have sodium in them, but depending on how much you give to them, they should be in the clear. Understanding how much salt your dog needs can help to ensure you are not giving them too much of it in their diet.

This might mean cutting back on your dog’s favorite snacks and finding healthier pet food options or reading through ingredients on the label of treats before you buy them for your dog. We have put together information about salt and sodium for your dogs to put your mind at ease.

Keep reading to learn more about this nuanced question.

How Much Salt Is Safe for Dogs?

Salt in moderation is safe for dogs, but too much of it can cause issues in your pet. Your dog requires salt in their daily diet, but never in excessive quantities. So, dogs need salt in order for their cells to function.

Your dog’s body needs salt to maintain fluid balance, acid-base balance, and nerve signal transmission. Too little salt might result in a condition called hyponatremia, which can cause lethargy, vomiting, seizures, loss of appetite, and other symptoms.

In general, the recommended daily salt intake lies between 0.25g – 1.5g per 100g of food. Excess salt could also result in dehydration, frequent urination, tongue swelling, muscle spasms, and more. Keeping a fresh bowl of clean water out can help to keep your dog’s salt levels in check, as they can regulate how much is in their body by staying hydrated.

If your pooch has certain health conditions like Kidney Disease or Heart Disease, they might be on a low-sodium diet. In this case, all treats, foods, and snacks should be vetted — salt is sneaky.

Salt vs. Sodium

When you are talking about salt and sodium, you are discussing two different things. Salt refers to sodium chloride, a compound found in nature, and sodium refers to a dietary mineral found in salt. Both are electrolytes that dogs need to function.

Dogs need a certain amount of sodium, but this salt can be found in your dog’s foods and treats. Eating healthier options that include sodium is an easy way to limit the amount of salt consumed while still reaping sodium’s benefits. Lean meats like chicken or fish, fresh vegetables, and whole-grain options tend to be lower in sodium.

Can Dogs Eat Too Much Salt?

An excess amount of salt and sodium in your dog’s diet can lead to hypernatremia, which means that the sodium levels in the blood are too high. This triggers dehydration in the dog, which happens when the muscles and tissue release fluid in the body to combat the high sodium levels.

If your dog is losing too much fluid during this attack, they might suffer from full-body stiffness resulting in difficulty walking, incoordination, tremors, and seizures. In severe cases, your vet might administer IV fluids or medications, and keep your pup for monitoring.

While humans tend to love adding a small amount of salt to their meals to boost bland flavors, our dogs sadly do not get the same luxury.

All salt should come from a dog’s diet, which is carefully formulated by industry experts. By keeping an eye on the labels and figuring out how much your dog is consuming, you don’t have to worry about them eating too much.

Just remember to keep your extra salty snacks away from your furry friend and in closed-off containers to ensure they don’t make their way into them!

What Are Some Signs of Salt Poisoning?

Generally, the first signs of salt poisoning or “sodium ion poisoning” are vomiting and an insatiable thirst. They might also seem tired and a bit out of it. They will also be stiffer than normal and might look awkward as they try to move. This is due to the moisture leaving their body, trying to make up for the excess salt.

Signs of salt toxicosis are:

  • Seizures
  • Dehydration
  • Coma
  • Excessive thirst
  • Excessive urination
  • Headache
  • Fever
  • Increased heart rate
  • Fluid buildup
  • Loss of appetite
  • Lack of energy
  • Nausea
  • Muscle spasms
  • Stomach pain
  • Tongue swelling
  • Respiratory distress
  • Diarrhea

Contributing Factors to Salt Toxicosis

As we discussed above, large amounts of salt consumption can lead to salt toxicosis. If you have an automatic fresh water dispenser for your dog, you must ensure that it’s working before leaving for any amount of time. A hand-filled dog bowl should be full. If they can’t get access to drinking water when needed, it could lead to a surplus of salt, resulting in dehydration.

Consuming rock salt, table salt, or soy sauce around the house might also lead to salt toxicity. Eating toys like play dough can also impact the sodium levels in your dog. Similarly, drinking too much ocean water can add more salt than is acceptable to the bloodstream.

What Are Some Foods With Too Much Salt?

Usually, the food that you are buying for your dog has been manufactured with the average salt intake in mind. Some human foods and household products that are likely to cause salt toxicosis if consumed in large quantities are:

  • Potato chips and fries
  • Hot dogs or other highly processed meats
  • Canned vegetables, soups, or meals
  • Pizza
  • Fast food meals
  • Pretzels
  • Table salt
  • Rock salt that’s used on icy roads

Some dog treats will also have too much salt; reading all labels could help prevent salt toxicity. Also, feeding your dog foods in moderation and not overfeeding them can help you to limit the amount of salt they intake. Anything more than the recommended amount should be avoided.

Get Answers With AskVet

Sometimes finding the answers to questions about your pet’s health requires skimming through blog after blog. You might not find the exact thing you are looking for, but with AskVet, you can get directly to the point. If you have a question about your pet’s health, AskVet is there to help.

With 24/7 around-the-clock availability, you can put your worries to ease. If you notice a change in behavior or are worried about their salt intake, you have someone to reach out to.

Right now, you can sign up for our services for just $9.99/month. Not only can you ask us all your last-minute questions, but we work to create a personalized plan for your pet so that they can stay healthy throughout their life. If you are in need of behavioral assistance, we can also help you with that!

Your pet is special and unique, and the care they need is also special and unique. No two dogs are the same, so why should their care be? Don’t hesitate, and instead get started with AskVet today!



Incidence, Severity and Prognosis Associated with Hyponatremia in Dogs and Cats | NCBI

Incidence, Severity and Prognosis Associated with Hypernatremia in Dogs and Cats | NCBI

Salt Toxicosis in Animals – Toxicology | Merck Veterinary Manual

Dog Runny Nose: 7 Specific Symptoms & Their Causes

Dog Runny Nose

It can be nerve-wracking when there is the slightest change in your dog’s behavior, whether it be their attitude, activity levels, or health. Getting to the bottom of it can be searching online for hours to figure out what might be going on with your pet. We understand just how difficult it can be to get to the bottom of your pet’s health — they can’t tell you what’s going on, and you can’t read their mind!

With certain symptoms, like a runny nose, there are many potential reasons why they might be experiencing a change in health. From something more common like allergies to something more serious like cancer, a runny nose can mean several things. Instead of jumping to the worst-case scenario, keep reading to learn more about how different issues can cause a runny nose.

At AskVet, our goal is to help you get to the bottom of things so you can spend less time worrying and more time loving your pet.

Is My Dog’s Nose Running?

Did your dog’s nose just drip on you, or are they just salivating due to the snack in your hand? Did they just dunk their face in the water bowl and bring you their leftovers, or is their nose actually dripping?

It’s not too difficult to rule out some of the above just by watching your dog for a bit. If you notice that their nose is running and a bit more wet than usual, it could be that they are experiencing a wide range of issues. Before panicking, it’s best to confirm that it is their nose and take note of any other symptoms that could be accompanying their runny nose.

What Are the Symptoms of a Runny Nose in Dogs?

All dogs get runny noses sometimes, and it’s not necessarily something to worry about. If you notice that your dog’s nose is constantly running or beginning to expel discharge, this could be something more than your average allergies.

The symptom of a casual, allergy-related runny nose might be a clear discharge that might drip out of their nose occasionally.

Other symptoms that might be more of a cause for concern are:

  • Constant dripping
  • Cloudy, yellow, green, or smelly discharge
  • Other changes in behavior, such as lethargy, loss of appetite, vomiting, or diarrhea

Should I Be Worried if My Dog’s Nose Is Running?

If your dog has no other symptoms other than a runny nose, you don’t need to jump to the worst possible outcome. Instead, monitor it for a few days to see if you recognize any changes in the discharge or your pet’s behavior.

However, if your pet is displaying worrisome or uncharacteristic behavior, it might be time to visit your vet. Remember, you know your pet best, and if there seems to be something off with them, you’ll realize it first.

If there is any discoloration in the discharge or your pet exhibits other symptoms like vomiting or lethargy, seek out medical attention. If you are a part of AskVet already, you can use our services to discuss your pet’s health and behavior and figure out what the best next steps would be.

What Causes a Runny Nose?

Runny noses in dogs have many causes, so it’s always helpful to know your options before heading into the emergency room. We’ve gathered a list of the most common causes of a runny nose to help determine what your dog might be experiencing. We can never be too cautious when it comes to our pets since they can’t tell us what they need.

1. Seasonal Allergies

Many breeds of dogs can be prone to seasonal or even food allergies. For instance, you might notice that when the trees are beginning to bloom, your dog is a bit more itchy and has a slight drip to their nose.

This is fairly common and is easiest to treat if you can figure out what the allergen is. Locating the source of the allergy can help with prescribing medication if needed, and it can also help you avoid certain areas and objects to limit your dog’s symptoms.

You can learn more about what might be impacting your dog by having a veterinarian do allergy tests on them. If you think it’s something they might be consuming, you can try out an elimination diet to see if some of her food is causing the reaction. However, don’t change your dog’s diet without a thumbs-up from your DVM.

2. Biology

Some dogs are more prone to runny noses than others, so it might just be that your pup needs to keep tissues on hand at all times. Flat-faced dogs might be more prone to a frequent runny nose, and sometimes surgery can help with this issue. It might become more noticeable as your dog’s nasal passage becomes weaker, but for many dogs, this is just something they live with.

It’s always best to consult with a veterinarian to learn about the best options for your dog.

3. Blockage in the Nostril

Another reason that your dog’s nose might be running a bit more than usual is if there is a foreign object lodged in the nostril. Pieces of grass, a crumb of food, or maybe even a small rock or stick could be obstructing your dog’s nasal passage, causing it to run (and also causing discomfort).

These foreign objects should be removed as soon as possible to not cause any other issues. If you are able to see the object and take it out yourself, carefully do so. If not, consult with a veterinarian.

Depending on how far back it is, this might be more difficult to do without causing any further irritation. Some vets will sedate your dog in order to get the object out safely. If the object stays in there for too long, it could cause irritation, nose bleeding, and even infections.

4. Infection

Dogs can develop infections in their noses that might be bacterial, viral, fungal, or parasitic. Regardless of the infection type, your dog will need antibiotics to help control the infection.

If you notice mucus or pus coming out of your dog’s nose, this might indicate an infection. This might be accompanied by a bad odor or nosebleed, and some dogs might cough and choke due to post-nasal drip discomfort.

As soon as you can get your pup on some antibiotics, the better off they will be. The longer you wait to get them treated, the more complications that could arise. If you’re constantly booping your dog’s nose, a change in the color, smell, and consistency of the wetness of their nose will be easy to spot.

5. Nasal Polyps and Tumors

If blood, mucus, and pus is coming out of your dog’s nose in addition to noisy breathing or a bulge on one side of their nose, it might be a sign of nasal polyps (overgrown mucus-production in the glands) or nasal tumors.

Nasal polyps usually need to be removed through surgery, and they can reappear after getting rid of them. There might be further treatment to undergo to limit this possibility. Nasal tumors will need to be screened to see if they are cancerous. Some benign tumors can be left on your dog with close monitoring, but others might need to be removed and treated very carefully.

6. Distemper

If your dog has distemper, they might have a sticky, yellow discharge coming from their nose. In addition, your dog might show signs of other symptoms like convulsions, fevers, pneumonia, or twitching.

Distemper can be prevented by getting your puppy vaccinated three times between eight and 16 weeks of age, but if your dog does end up with it, treatment can include anticonvulsants, antibiotics, or painkillers and sedatives. This is an emergency situation.

7. Kennel Cough

While Canine Distemper can cause kennel cough, the two are not exactly the same. Kennel cough, or canine infectious respiratory disease complex (CIRDC), is a very broad and common disease complex that can result from a variety of viral organisms.

You might notice your dog coughing and sneezing while also experiencing nasal discharge. Kennel cough can be spread through direct contact and in close spaces, like at a kennel (hence the name) or dog park. You will want to separate your infected dog from any other animals in the house, and your vet might prescribe you antibiotics.

Get Answers With AskVet

When you download the AskVet app, you’re able to access 24/7 veterinarian care from the comfort of your own home. If you have questions about your pet’s behavior and health, there are people ready to answer and bring you peace of mind. This goes for a runny nose, too. If you feel like you should be worried, send over your concerns on AskVet and get a prompt response.

We also work to create a specialized plan for your pet to keep them in the best health. And it’s not just dogs! Any animal that you have can benefit from AskVet, so sign-up today for just $9.99/month and ensure that you can get access to the answers you are searching for quickly and efficiently.



Canine Atopic Dermatitis: Detailed Guidelines For Diagnosis And Allergen Identification | BMC Veterinary Research

Eucoleus Boehmi | Companion Animal Parasite Council

Co-occurrence of Nasal Polyps and Neoplasms of the Canine Nasal Cavity | Sage Journals

Can Dogs Eat Grapes? What You Need To Know

Can Dogs Eat GrapesWhat You Need To Know

Do you enjoy peanut butter and grape jelly sandwiches? Raisins? Grape juice? These are all delicious snacks for kids and adults, but unfortunately, these are not snacks that we can share with our dogs.

Can Dogs Eat Grapes?

Although our dogs can enjoy plenty of fruits, like blueberries and apples, grapes are a big no-no. This includes anything related to a grape as well, like raisins, sultanas, and currants.

This means no nibbles of peanut butter and grape jelly sandwiches, trail mix that has raisins mixed in, and no fruit salad with grapes mixed in. Any grape product is off-limits in any amount. In fact, a single grape can be enough to cause a toxic dose which can result in acute kidney failure.

Why Can’t Dogs Eat Grapes?

For the longest time, grape toxicity was a head-scratcher for veterinarians. Veterinarians knew that grapes were the cause of kidney damage in some dogs but kidney failure in others. Some dogs would have only one grape and succumb to kidney failure, while another dog had a handful of grapes but only suffered from mild kidney damage. It was a conundrum.

Finally, a conclusion has been reached in the mystery of grape toxicity. Veterinarians at the ASPCA Poison Control Center have made the discovery that tartaric acid in grapes was the toxic substance behind the harmful side effects.

Tartaric acid can vary greatly from grape type to grape type and even between the same type of grape, depending on how ripe the grape is. Even the weather and soil type can affect the amount of tartaric acid a grape has. There are also varying levels of tartaric acid between raisins, sultanas, and currants as well.

This great discrepancy between the varying levels of tartaric acid between grapes can be the explanation for the different reactions to grape poisoning among dogs.

After that, pet parents may ask if one type of grape is safe to eat. Is there a difference between green grapes, purple grapes, or seedless grapes? Sadly, the answer is an absolute no.

My Dog Ate Grapes. What Now?

If your dog has eaten a grape or raisin, call your veterinary clinic or pet poison control immediately. Veterinary care is required if your dog ingests any amount of grapes. This definitely constitutes an emergency.

Your DVM will administer activated charcoal to help your dog vomit and hopefully remove any grapes from their system before signs of grape toxicity or raisin toxicity appear. The symptoms of grape poisoning include:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Pale gums
  • Loss of appetite
  • Dry nose
  • Trouble breathing
  • Decreased or increased urine production (but increased thirst)

Additional symptoms include vomit and diarrhea. Your dog may also be lethargic and will not have any appetite.

Intravenous fluid therapy will also be given to help relieve your dog’s kidneys and minimize any damage by any tartaric acid in your dog’s system. Grapes can stay in the stomach ranging four to six hours, and symptoms of grape toxicity can develop as early as six hours after ingestion, even sooner depending on your dog’s system.

Time is of the essence when it comes to treating grape toxicity. Unlike livers, kidneys cannot occasionally repair themselves, so we must carefully preserve kidney function.

It is vital that your dog is seen by a veterinarian as soon as possible if you see them eat a grape or if you believe any grape ingestion has occurred.

What Fruits Can My Dogs Have?

While grapes (and anything grape-related) should be entirely avoided, this doesn’t mean that your dog is completely cut off from the fruit world. They can still enjoy the sweet treat of a cold piece of fruit on a hot day.

Your dog can enjoy fruits like apples, strawberries, bananas, watermelon, pineapple, and blueberries. Of course, you’ll want to consult your veterinarian if you aren’t entirely sure about a human food you want to feed your dog.

The Bottom Line

Your dog cannot have grapes, and you likely will not want to share one of your dog’s treats. However, having access to our veterinarians at AskVet is a way to treat yourself to ensure that you always have a veterinarian to chat with whenever you have a concern.

Our AskVet veterinarians are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to discuss your pet’s needs. Whether you have a question that needs answering right away, or if you want to brush up on your knowledge about pet health and wellness, you can chat with one of our knowledgeable veterinarians with no appointment needed!

When you join AskVet, you receive access to 1:1 pet coach training, 24/7 vet support, a pet ID tag that helps to reunite you with your dog if they are ever lost, and a peer-to-peer community to talk with other pet parents like yourself.

Get total peace of mind for one low monthly price; join us today!


Can Dogs Eat Grapes? | Veterinarians.org

‘In the News’: Updates on Grape Toxicity | Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine

Mystery Solved: Why Grapes are Toxic to Dogs | Grady Veterinary Hospital

Liver Disease and Failure in Dogs – Causes, Stages, Treatment | Vale Vets

5 Bland Foods To Feed a Dog With Diarrhea

5 Bland Foods To Feed a Dog With Diarrhea

Just like people, our dogs can experience the occasional bout of tummy troubles. When we have an upset stomach, we just want to lay down and keep to ourselves until the feeling passes. Our dogs can definitely feel the same. Instead of your dog’s ever-wagging tail, they are clearly not feeling well and may make a rush to the door to get outside to use the bathroom.

You may be wondering why your dog has made the mad dash. Once you see them use the bathroom, you will completely understand why when you see runny or loose stools in your backyard (hopefully!). Even if your poor buddy couldn’t quite make it outside, you know they need some extra care from their human parents.

What Causes Diarrhea in Dogs?

Often, diarrhea can start when your dog eats something that doesn’t agree with them. You may be familiar with this if you have a shenanigan-loving dog who got into the trash can and ate some particularly smelly leftovers from a few days ago.

Feeding your dog table scraps that are too heavy or rich can also cause gastrointestinal distress. Another cause of diarrhea in dogs is if you quickly switch them to a new food. The sudden change can cause their digestive tract to be less than happy.

Of course, diarrhea can be a symptom of something else lurking in your dog’s system. If your dog ate a foreign object, they might experience a blockage which can then cause diarrhea. Viral and bacterial infections can also be a cause, as well as intestinal parasites like roundworms or hookworms.

Other serious health issues that might explain your dog’s stool include giardia, parvovirus, or even kidney disease. Your DVM will be able to confirm a diagnosis.

Allergies and Dog Health

One potential answer behind canine chronic diarrhea is the type of dog food. Your dog could possibly have food allergies to some protein sources or filler types in regular foods. A food intolerance could be the underlying cause behind your pup’s disrupted bowel movements, and your vet can run allergy tests to confirm.

When Should I Take My Dog to the Vet?

Any time things are not normal for your dog is always a cause for concern, especially tummy troubles. If you see that your dog is experiencing diarrhea, but they are acting their usual self, this may be a case of just an occasional digestive upset that might work itself out.

However, if your dog experiences more than two days of diarrhea episodes, especially paired with any additional symptoms, then making an appointment with your dog’s veterinarian is a smart next step.

Additional symptoms to be on the lookout for include:

  • Vomiting
  • Signs of dehydration (dry nose, dry gums)
  • Excessive Drooling
  • Weakness
  • Blood in stool
  • Lack of appetite

If your dog does need treatment, your veterinarian will run the necessary tests and make their best judgment call. Likely next steps would be to monitor your dog, as well as give them fluids and electrolytes to help get their intestinal tract back on track.

Anytime you are concerned about your dog, a quick call to the veterinarian clinic can help soothe your nerves. Being a member of AskVet is also a great layer of support when you would like to speak with a veterinarian. Our 24/7 support can give you peace of mind when you need a quick question answered.

How Can I Help My Dog Feel Better?

For those mild cases of diarrhea caused by the odd food, a little TLC goes a long way. Gently pats and reassuring words comfort your dog and let them know that you will be close by. If the case is mild, it might solve itself over the next day or so.

It’s best to contact your dog’s veterinarian if you are concerned about your dog’s bout of diarrhea. Your vet may recommend one of the most common over-the-counter remedies: a bland diet. Keeping your dog’s diet as light and plain as possible may help soothe their stomach back to where it once was. This means no spices and minimal fat.

A bland diet allows your dog to have some food in their sensitive stomachs, but these foods are easily digestible and give your dog’s digestive system a well-needed break. You may also elect to withhold food for 12 to 24 hours (upon the direction of your vet) and then slowly introduce these bland foods to help your dog recover. It’s generally a good sign when your dog has an appetite.

Let’s take a look at some bland foods that will get your dog back to tippy tapping form in no time.

Chicken & Rice

Also, comfort food for humans, a little plain white rice with chicken, can be a comfort meal for your dog. The chicken should be plain with no seasoning and shredded or cut into small pieces. You can also mix in a dash of chicken broth with the rice as long as the broth does not have onions or garlic in it.

Luckily these days, you can usually find precooked rice and shredded chicken in the grocery store. Make sure you double-check the ingredient listing to ensure that no seasonings are used that may aggravate your dog’s digestive system.

Low-Fat Hamburger

Another bland protein is low-fat hamburger. This home remedy meal should be unseasoned and drained as much as possible of any lingering fat.

To ensure all the fat is gone, you can evenly spread the cooked hamburger on a plate with a few layers of paper towels while it cools. You can also mix the cooked hamburger with rice to give your dog something a tad more filling.


If your dog is wary about their regular diet at the moment, some broth can be the perfect segway to ensure that they are hydrated but are also ingesting some nutrients and a little flavor to entice your dog’s appetite.

Broth of all kinds can be easily found at the grocery store these days. Like the store-prepared rice and shredded chicken, check the ingredients label for any seasonings. If your dog doesn’t love broth, your vet could possibly recommend rice water.

Pumpkin/Sweet Potatoes

While we love pumpkin and sweet potato pies, these fillings are also great at helping to settle your pooch’s upset tummy. These two vegetables are easily digestible when they are prepared without seasonings. They also contain plenty of nutrients that could help your dog’s gastrointestinal tract feel nourished and ready to get back on schedule.

Pumpkin is sometimes used as a treatment for constipation.

Scrambled Eggs

Soft scrambled eggs are also a great source of protein that is easily digestible. We may sound like a broken record, but remember not to add any seasonings to the eggs, so you don’t further aggravate your dog’s stomach.

Road to Recovery

While it is always tough to see your furry best buddy not feeling well, rest assured that you have a team of experienced and knowledgeable veterinarians available to help 24/7.

While most cases of doggy diarrhea tend to resolve on their own with a little extra TLC, it’s important to always keep a watchful eye over your furbaby.

Join AskVet today, and know that you’ll have easy access to doggy care, whether it is a question about symptoms or just wanting to brush up on your pet health and wellness knowledge. We are only a short click away!


What is the most common cause of diarrhea in dogs? | Ventura Emergency Vet

Diarrhea | Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine

Acute Diarrhea in Dogs: Current Management and Potential Role of Dietary Polyphenols Supplementation | PMC

What Every Pet Owner Should Know About Food Allergies | Tufts University