Why Does My Dog Whine Before Eating Food?

December 05, 2023 in Dog

Poor baby: Your puppy is whining before eating. We love our dogs and want them to enjoy their food as we enjoy ours, but if something needs to be fixed, they cannot tell us in words. A dog whining for attention leaves us scratching our heads to find the root cause. Is something wrong with the dog? The food? Something else? Read on. We will walk you through possible reasons for your dog's whining.

Two Dogs whining for attention

Dog Whining About the Food

Your dog could be whining because of the food you are serving. It could be that the food lacks sufficient calories and nutrients for your dog to feel full, or your dog could be whining to let you know that it does not like the food or wants something else. Bacon anyone?

Dog Whining Because of Anxiety

Did you change something about where or how you served your dog its food? Are you changing the time, the place where you feed your dog, or the bowl you put the food in? If you have a highly anxious pet, your dog could be whining to let you know it feels uncomfortable and needs reassurance.

Dog Whining Because of Hunger

Maybe your dog is whining because it is starving, and the food smells so good! Some dogs are naturally more vocal and like to tell you in the only way they know how they are ready to eat. Puppies behave like this toward their mothers, and dogs, by extension, sometimes behave like this to their owners. They are asking for our care.

It is also possible that your pet is ravenous because of a deeper problem. For instance, it might have a parasite like a tapeworm that always makes it hungry. A veterinarian visit is in order if you suspect this is the case. You might also consider an adult dog care plan to address this situation. Different plan tiers offer various prepaid services, including preventative care and multiple free office visits and exams. Your dog's health and your peace of mind are both worth it.

Dog Whining Because of Pain

Finally, your dog could be whining because something hurts. For instance, your pet might have a sore tooth or mouth, which might hurt eating. It is trying to ask you for help! Further inspection might reveal an infection or a dental issue. If your dog appears to be in pain—for instance, if it seems to be having trouble chewing—reach out to your vet immediately.

What Should You Do if Your Dog Whines Before Eating Food

Barking, whining, and crying are not the only ways your dog can communicate with you. There is also body language, so you should pay close attention to your dog's other actions if it seems like your dog cries all the time. If your dog seems distressed, your best bet is to schedule an appointment with a trained veterinarian. The best response to a whiny dog is a caring and attentive owner.

Dog crying sounds and dog whining sounds can be upsetting. However, if your dog is simply vocal but seems fine otherwise, you can try some other things first:

  • Prioritize routine: Dogs love consistency: eating the same amount at the same time in the same quiet place each day. Avoid commotion or changing your dog's food too often. If you do try a different dog food, introduce it a little at a time over several days.
  • Fine-tune training: Give your dog positive reinforcement when it sits, waits patiently for food, and eats quietly. Ignore whining, but never scold your dog before eating—that could make your pet anxious!
  • Enlist the pros: When all else fails, you can turn to professional dog trainers to help you teach your dog not to cry and whine before mealtimes. Sometimes, a trainer can point out things you may have missed and help you learn to communicate with your dog lovingly and firmly.

Ready to turn your pup's whines into happy mealtime moments? Take the first step towards a joyful dining experience for your furry friend. Reach out to Forever Vets and explore more insights and expert advice.