Some people believe modern dogs descend from wolves and that their drive for food is a component of their genetic makeup. A strong interest in treats certainly encourages pups in the training process, but when does a dog’s desire for food become excessive?
If your dog is growing and needs some help to put on healthy weight, the weight gain supplement by XDOG can do the trick. However, for many dogs, their voracious appetite goes beyond ordinary hunger. Often, owners have food-obsessed dog breeds without even knowing it. In such cases, they lack the knowledge they need to sate these ever-hungry pups.
Here, we’ll discuss why some dog breeds are so food-motivated and how you can handle their hunger.
The Most Food-Obsessed Dog Breeds
Although most dogs are motivated by food to some extent, some breeds’ hunger drives them more than others. Some examples of food-obsessed dog breeds include:
- French Bulldogs
- Golden Retrievers
- Bull Terriers
- Labrador Retrievers
Labrador Retrievers, in particular, are notorious for their insatiable hunger. Among the most popular breeds in the U.S. for their outgoing, energetic personalities, their obsession with treats makes them easy to train, although their friendliness is often a means of seeking food.
What Causes Food-Obsession in Dogs?
Several factors could increase appetite in Labs and other dogs. Remember that dogs are sensitive to their surroundings and physical state, so they may use food to compensate for stress in unfamiliar circumstances.
A Change in Environment
A recent move to a new home, an additional housemate or pet, or a drastic home renovation can disrupt a dog’s routine and cause distress.
Even if your furry companion wasn’t formerly a food-obsessed dog, a wave of sudden anxiety could cause excess hunger, and the dog could start overeating to cope. This behavior is not unlike the way humans often eat when we are under stress.
A fearful dog might fiercely guard their resources, chew on things they’re not supposed to chew, and become a pesky beggar wanting more dinner. To prevent stress-eating in your pup, it’s essential to create a meal schedule and moderate the amount of food you’re making available to your dog.
If you recently adopted a new pet into the household, consider giving your dog a private place to eat until you can safely introduce them to the new addition. Help the dog create a new routine to replace the disrupted old one, decrease anxiety, and prevent excessive stress-eating.
Many health conditions prevent dogs from receiving nutrients from food, making them feel starved despite eating a full meal. To make up for the lack of nutrients, your dog might overeat.
Another rarer possibility is a mutation of the pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) gene. Ordinarily, the gene serves as an indicator of fullness, alerting the brain that the dog should stop eating after a meal.
However, if the POMC gene has experienced a mutation, that alert never occurs, and the dog still craves food after eating.
Labrador Retrievers, known for their bottomless stomachs, are frequent carriers of the mutated POMC gene. The mutation contributes to their food obsession.
How to Handle a Food-Obsessed Dog
Dealing with an unhealthy or overeating dog is worrisome. As a pet owner, you want what’s best for your furry friend, and that includes keeping them in the best health possible.
If your dog is facing complications with overeating or excessive weight gain, it’s best to visit the veterinarian and allow them to help you devise a plan to meet your dog’s diet and exercise needs. However, you can take some steps at home to improve your dog’s relationship with food.
- Maintain portion control. While it may be convenient because of your busy schedule, free-feeding can often lead to overeating in dogs. For dogs to maintain a healthy weight, you must measure out portion sizes according to their weight and breed. Likewise, you should also schedule their meals to keep them on a routine. Sometimes, pups won’t take kindly to eating only once or twice per day. If this problem occurs, try feeding them their measured meals in smaller portions throughout the day to sate their hunger, while still adhering to portion control.
- Make exercise a priority. Physical activity is crucial to dogs’ overall health. The amount of exercise each dog needs depends on its age and breed, but the minimum requirement often ranges from one to two hours a day. Exercise will improve your dog’s health, increase strength, and help them maintain a healthy weight. Integrate regular exercise into your dog’s routine to keep them active. Use different parts of the day to get them outside and moving, such as before you leave for work or on lunch breaks.
- Switch to a higher-quality dog food–like XDOG’s True Beast dog food. The quality of your dog’s food plays a significant role in their overall health. Maintaining a healthy weight and the energy they need to run and play requires nutrients, and many dog food brands lack the most vital nutrients dogs need. At XDOG, we use superior ingredients that will satisfy you and your pup. When your dog feels good, you will feel relieved. Our products will keep your pup feeling healthy and playful.
Keep Your Dog Healthy With XDOG
Whether your dog belongs to the most food-obsessed dog breeds or merely has an impressive appetite, it’s critical to monitor your dog’s health and speak with your veterinarian to learn why your dog is gaining weight.
Portion control, exercise, and a structured routine go a long way in regulating your dog’s appetite, but these measures will only provide so much improvement with low-quality dog food. That’s why we recommend switching to XDOG’s True Beast dog food.
With a range of food and treat options, we at XDOG provide protein-packed nutrition for all breeds to ensure happy, healthy dogs and peace of mind for their owners.
Save yourself the stress of an unhealthy pup. Check out XDOG’s selection of quality, nutritious dog food products today to keep your dog strong, high-spirited, and spry.