It can be concerning when a puppy is not eating much and sleeping a lot. As a pet owner, you want to ensure that your furry friend is healthy and happy. However, there are many reasons why a puppy may exhibit these behaviours.

One possibility is that the puppy is simply not hungry. Puppies go through periods of rapid growth, and during these times, they may need to sleep more and eat less. Another reason could be teething pain. Puppies go through a teething phase, and during this time, they may not want to eat because their gums are sore. Stress and anxiety, digestive problems, organ diseases, or respiratory infections could also be the cause.

If you notice that your puppy is not eating much and sleeping a lot, it is important to take them to the vet as soon as possible. The vet can examine your puppy and determine the underlying cause of their behaviour. In the meantime, there are steps you can take to encourage your puppy to eat and be more active.

Common Causes

Puppies are adorable and fun to have around, but they can also be a source of worry for their owners, especially when they are not eating much and sleeping a lot. There are several reasons why a puppy may not be eating or sleeping as much as usual, including:

Stress and Anxiety

Just like humans, puppies can experience stress and anxiety, which can cause them to lose their appetite and sleep more than usual. Stressful situations such as moving to a new home, being separated from their mother or littermates, or meeting new people or animals can all cause stress and anxiety in puppies.

It is important to provide a calm and comfortable environment for the puppy and to give them plenty of love and attention to help them feel secure and relaxed.

Change in Diet

A sudden change in diet can also cause a puppy to lose their appetite and sleep more than usual. This could happen if the puppy is introduced to a new type of food or if their feeding schedule is changed.

It is important to introduce new foods gradually and to stick to a consistent feeding schedule to avoid upsetting the puppy’s digestive system and causing them to lose their appetite.

Illness or Disease

If a puppy is not eating much and sleeping a lot, it could be a sign of an underlying illness or disease. Common illnesses in puppies include parvovirus, distemper, and kennel cough. These illnesses can cause lethargy, loss of appetite, and other symptoms.

If a puppy is showing signs of illness or if their lack of appetite and excessive sleeping persists for more than a day or two, it is important to take them to the vet for a check-up.

It is important to keep a close eye on a puppy’s eating and sleeping habits and to take action if there are any changes or concerns. By addressing the common causes of a puppy not eating much and sleeping a lot, owners can help their furry friend stay healthy and happy.

What to Do

If your puppy is not eating much and sleeping a lot, there are a few things you can do to help them feel better.

Monitor Your Puppy’s Behaviour

First, keep a close eye on your puppy’s eating and sleeping habits. If they are not eating or sleeping more than usual, you should consult a vet. Other potential causes of sickness in puppies include gastrointestinal issues, liver disease, pancreatitis, infections, or parasites.

It’s important to note that if your puppy is not eating, they may also be dehydrated. Make sure they have access to plenty of clean water and monitor their drinking habits.

Try Different Foods

If your puppy is not eating their regular food, try offering them something else. You can try adding some warm water to their dry food or mixing in a little bit of canned food. You can also try offering them some cooked chicken or rice.

It’s important to remember that some dogs are picky eaters, so it may take some trial and error to find something they like. However, it’s important to avoid giving your puppy table scraps or human food, as this can lead to digestive problems.

Consult Your Vet

If your puppy is not eating or sleeping and you are concerned, it’s always best to consult your vet. They can help determine the underlying cause of your puppy’s symptoms and recommend a course of treatment.

Your vet may also recommend a change in diet or prescribe medication to help your puppy feel better. It’s important to follow their recommendations closely and monitor your puppy’s behaviour closely.

Remember, if your puppy is not eating or sleeping, it’s important to take action. By monitoring their behaviour, trying different foods, and consulting your vet, you can help your puppy feel better and get back to their normal self.



Preventing your puppy from experiencing a lack of appetite and excessive sleep can be done by establishing a feeding routine, providing a comfortable sleeping environment, and scheduling regular check-ups with your veterinarian.

Establish a Feeding Routine

Establishing a feeding routine is essential to ensure that your puppy is eating enough and at the right times. According to AKC, puppies up to six months old should be fed three times a day. After six months, they can be fed twice a day.

You can also try feeding your puppy at the same time each day to establish a routine. This will help them develop a sense of when to expect food, which can help increase their appetite.

It’s also important to choose the right type of food for your puppy. Consult with your veterinarian to determine the best type of food for your puppy’s age, breed, and health condition.

Provide a Comfortable Sleeping Environment

Providing a comfortable sleeping environment for your puppy is also important. Puppies need plenty of rest to grow and develop properly. Make sure your puppy has a comfortable bed or crate to sleep in, and that it’s located in a quiet, dark, and cool area of the house.

According to AKC, puppies need between 18 and 20 hours of sleep a day. Make sure your puppy is getting enough rest by providing them with a comfortable sleeping environment.

Regular Check-ups with Your Vet

Scheduling regular check-ups with your veterinarian is important to ensure that your puppy is healthy and getting the proper nutrition. Your veterinarian can also help identify any health issues that may be causing your puppy’s lack of appetite or excessive sleep.

During check-ups, your veterinarian may also recommend a specific type of food or supplements that can help improve your puppy’s appetite and energy levels.

Regular check-ups can also help catch any health issues early on, which can prevent them from developing into more serious problems.


When a puppy is not eating much and is sleeping a lot, it could be a sign of a health problem. It is important to monitor their behavior closely and determine if something is wrong. Remember, puppies do sleep a lot, and their eating habits can vary depending on their age, breed, and overall health.

Some common reasons why a puppy may not be eating and sleeping a lot include teething, finicky eating, and anxiety. However, other causes require prompt medical attention, such as anemia, kennel cough, parvovirus, or distemper.

If your puppy is not eating or drinking much and is sleeping more than usual, it is recommended to take them to a veterinarian to determine the underlying cause. The vet may run some tests and recommend a treatment plan.

It is important to provide your puppy with a balanced diet, regular exercise, and plenty of rest. Additionally, you should always monitor their behavior and contact a veterinarian if you notice any unusual symptoms or changes in their eating and sleeping habits.

By taking good care of your puppy and addressing any health concerns promptly, you can help ensure that they grow up healthy and happy.