Skip to Content
My Happy Husky is an Amazon associate and earns a small commission for qualifying purchases. Not professional advice, education only. More info here.

My Shiba Inu Won’t Eat: 7 Reasons Why & What To Do

If you’re Shiba Inu has stopped eating it can get worrying fast. I’ve dealt with this many times and can share what helped my dogs get back on track.

I’ll explain the main causes behind this, how to fix it, and when to seek help from a veterinarian. Everything you need to know is below.

shiba inu wont eat

Are Shiba Inus Prone To Eating Issues?

You bet! Shiba Inus are known for being a bit choosy with their food. Not all Shibas will turn up their noses, but many owners have seen this happen.

Don’t worry, though. This picky eating can be fixed.

If your Shiba is being fussy, there’s a reason. Once you find out why, you can help them get back to happy eating.

Want to know how to get your Shiba eating again? Check out our tips above. They can help make mealtime fun for your picky Shiba!

7 Reasons Why Your Shiba Inu Isn’t Eating

Let’s run through the main seven causes behind food refusal in Shiba Inus. What one is related to your Shiba will be understood once you consider recent events, current diet, routine and other things.

It is admitiidely hard pinpointing the cause, but ask questions about their exercise, daily routine, diet, have they had issues before… consider if anything has changed to cause this?

Considering all of these things can help you get to the bottom of it.

1. Food disagreement

If your Shiba Inu walks away from his bowl, he might not like what’s in it. Shibas can also have touchy tummies. If the food gives them a belly ache, they’ll say “no thanks” the next time.

Look for food that’s high in protein. It helps them stay strong and is easier on their belly. But don’t give them too much fat. It can be hard to digest.

So, what’s the plan? High protein, and just a little fat and carbs. Stay away from foods that can cause allergies like soy, wheat, and even chicken.

Related Read: Best food for Shiba Inus with sensitive stomachs

2. Lack of exercise

Shibas aren’t big eaters by nature. They need a reason to be hungry. Exercise gives them that reason.

These little dogs are active and love to move. Aim for at least an hour of play each day. This can be walks, fetch, or even some agility training.

The more they move, the more they’ll want to eat.

Related Guide: Complete Shiba Inu Exercise Ideas

3. Eating too many treats

If your Shiba is receiving too many table scraps, tid bits, or even their own treats, they’ll soon catch on and refuse their own less appealing food.

This happens all the time with dogs that receive too many treats or table scraps throughout the day.

4. Feeding schedule

If your Shiba is nibbling on treats all day, he won’t be hungry at mealtime. Stick to a feeding schedule. That way, he knows when it’s time to eat.

The best time to feed him is after he’s rested from exercise. Wait about 45 minutes after exercise to give him his meal.

5. Environment issues

Shibas like to feel safe when they eat. They can be a bit nervous, especially in new places or with loud noises. Make sure his eating spot is quiet and calm. If he still won’t eat, try moving his bowl to a different room.

6. Boredom

Sometimes Shibas get bored with their food. If he’s not excited about eating anymore, it may be time for a change. But don’t switch too often. That can upset his stomach.

If this is the case, you Shiba may start getting slower to eat over a long period of time, they might play with the food first, and be reluctant to eat it, before eventually stopping.

This is something than can easily be triggered if your Shiba is receiving a lot of alternative food throughout the day.

7. Health issues

If your Shiba isn’t eating and you can’t figure out why, it’s vet time. If he skips meals for two days, see a doctor.

Shibas can have their own health issues. Your vet will do tests to make sure everything is okay.

In short, if your Shiba isn’t eating, it could be his food, lack of exercise, or even his mood. The best thing to do is check these things one by one. And if you’re still worried, a trip to the vet is a good idea.

When To See a Vet

If your Shiba Inu isn’t eating, it’s normal to feel worried. But when is it time to see a vet?

  1. No Water: If your Shiba isn’t drinking water and also isn’t eating, go to the vet within 24 hours. This is serious.
  2. Young or Old: Got a Shiba puppy or an older dog? If they skip meals, go to the vet within 24 hours. They’re more fragile than adult Shibas.
  3. Long Time No Eat: If your adult Shiba hasn’t eaten for more than 5-7 days but is drinking water, it’s vet time.
  4. Feeling Bad: Is your Shiba acting tired? Not playing like usual? This can mean something’s wrong. A vet can help find out what.
  5. Weight Loss: If your Shiba is losing weight fast, don’t wait. Go to the vet.
  6. Other Signs: Look for other weird signs. Is your Shiba experiencing diarrhea? vomiting? Do they have an unusually dull coat or runny eyes?

Remember, it’s always better to be safe. If you’re worried, a quick vet visit can give you peace of mind. Plus, it can help your Shiba get back to enjoying mealtime.

6 Ways To Help Your Shiba Inu Eat Again

The following tips are all important. I would make a note on no.2 though, I would only personally switch a dog’s food if I believe that is the cause of the upset…

If you Shiba has always been fine with this food, then don’t switch it right away, try other methods first.

Ditch the Allergy Foods

First things first. Make sure you know what foods can make your Shiba allergic. Then, take them out of his diet. This simple step might be all he needs to start eating again.

Related Read: Top foods for Shiba Inus with sensitive stomachs

Switch Up the Protein

You might think your Shiba loves chicken or beef, but these are common allergy foods for dogs. How about giving him fish, turkey, or salmon instead? These are easier on the stomach and less likely to cause allergies.

Remember, all dogs are different. So start slow. Give him a little at first to see how he likes it.

Make Food Tastier

Want to make your Shiba’s mealtime more fun? Add some flavor! You can use meat broth, a spoonful of wet dog food, or even a bit of peanut butter. Just keep an eye on the calories.

Related Article: How to help your Shiba Inu gain weight in a healthy way

No treats or table scraps

Cut back to zero treats and table scraps for now.

You can re-introduce healthy dog treats when your Shiba has a better appetite and is eating again.

But for table scraps, it’s best to stop it for good. Table scraps are just terrible for our dogs, and although we think we are rewarding them with something tasty, it’s causing havoc on the inside.

Set Meal Times

Shibas like routine. Set feeding times help him know when it’s time to eat. When mealtime comes, he’ll be ready and hungry.

Another tip? Don’t leave his food out all day. Put it down at mealtime, and then pick it up later. This helps him know that mealtime is special.

More Play, More Hunger

Last but not least, exercise. If your Shiba plays more, he’ll get hungrier. Remember, Shibas are active dogs. They love to run, jump, and play. The more they move, the more they’ll want to eat.

In a nutshell, if your Shiba Inu isn’t eating well, try these tips. From changing his food to setting mealtime routines, these small changes can make a big difference. And of course, more playtime is always a good idea!

How Long Can Shiba Inus Go Without Eating

Many Shiba Inu owners wonder how long their pup can go without eating.

In general, a healthy adult Shiba Inu can go around 5-7 days without food if they’re drinking water. But this isn’t ideal, and you should still check what’s going on.

If your Shiba isn’t drinking water either, that’s a big red flag. Get to the vet within 24 hours. It’s urgent.

Got a baby Shiba or an old one? They’re more delicate. If they skip meals, get them to the vet within 24 hours. They need help sooner than adult Shibas.

So, if your Shiba isn’t eating, don’t wait too long to find out why. And if they’re not drinking water, get to the vet fast. It’s better to be safe!


The advice given in this article is for educational purposes only and does not constitute professional advice in any context. Before making any decisions that may affect the health and/or safety of your dog, you should always consult a trained veterinarian in your local area. For the FULL disclaimer Visit Here

Copyright Notice: The content produced and published on My Happy Husky is unique and original. My Happy Husky makes an active effort to search for plagiarized content using plagiarism detection software. If plagiarized content is found, action will be taken.

Protected by Copyscape

Highlight not available