Skip to Content

My Golden Retriever Is Not Eating: Learn About Causes & Solutions

My Golden Retriever Is Not Eating: Learn About Causes & Solutions
Golden Retriever Is Not Eating

We all know how much our Golden Retrievers love to eat. Their incredible appetite is the reason why obesity is a common problem when we talk about Goldens. That’s why it can be worrying, even scary when your Golden Retriever is not eating. 

This sudden loss of appetite can be a sign of serious health or behavioral issues. But it can also be caused by minor, easily solvable factors.

Golden Retriever Is Not Eating: Most Common Causes

These are the most common causes of appetite loss in Golden Retrievers:


Just like humans, Goldens will lose appetite when they are sick. Fever may cause this, but it could also be a sign of more serious health problems. If the appetite loss is accompanied by diarrhea or vomiting, you should visit the vet as soon as possible.

Dental issues

One of the reasons your Golden Retriever is not eating could be a loose, broken, or cracked tooth. This will cause considerable pain to your dog, thus preventing it from eating. Golden Retrievers are known for hiding their pain from owners, so in case of appetite loss, one of the first things you need to check is the dog’s teeth.


With nasty diseases and parasites, like parvovirus and worms, every Golden Retriever owner knows vaccination is a must. However, vaccination can have a brief, but unpleasant side effects. One of these side effects can be a temporary loss of appetite.

Change of surroundings

Dogs can become uncomfortable and nervous in new surroundings and environment. So, if you noticed a change in your dog’s appetite after you went on a trip, or moved to a new place, this could be the cause.

Senior Dog

Older dogs are known to stop eating simply because they forgot to eat. However, you should visit the vet if the issue lasts more than two days.

Addition of a new dog in the family

One of the most stressful moments in Golden’s life is the addition of a new dog to your family. Your Golden Retriever may lose his appetite because of the stress. Don’t worry, though, as he will adjust to the new pooch and recover.

Change in routine

Goldens love routine! When you set up a feeding routine for them, don’t change it. Change in feeding schedule will cause a domino effect, as your dog will need to adjust to the new routine.


One of the reasons your Golden Retriever is not eating could be pickiness. Maybe, you changed the brand of the food, and your dog, simply, doesn’t like it. If you suspect this is the case, try adding something he likes into the mix to test it.

The dog wants to be fed

Most of us like to spoil our Goldens. In some cases, they can be so spoilt that you need to feed them, or they won’t eat.


Most medications have known side effects. For example, antibiotics can cause stomachache and nausea. Other methods of treatment, like chemotherapy or anti-inflammatory drugs, can cause appetite loss, etc.

Pack mentality

You might have noticed your Golden Retriever is not eating while you are not in the house, and then when you return, he starts eating. What is the cause of this behavior?

Well, Dogs are social, pack animals, so the reason why your Golden does not eat while you are not in the house is simple. He is waiting for the pack to return, and then he will eat.

When To Seek Profesional Help?

If your Golden Retriever is not eating, but after a few days, it starts to eat normally again, there is nothing to be worried about. However, if the loss of appetite is accompanied by some other symptoms like diarrhea, vomiting, lethargy, or excessive water consumption, it’s time to visit the veterinarian.