Why Is My Puppy Not Gaining Weight?

Everyone wants the best for their dogs, especially while their as still a fragile puppy. But what do you do if your puppy isn’t gaining weight? Before you begin to panic, just remember that all dogs grow at different rates depending on their breed and genetic makeup. Before jumping to conclusions that your dog has a problem, try consulting with your vet to find out information on your dog’s specific breed. From toy to large size dogs and even from female to male – there can be major differences in canine weight gain. So what can you do if your puppy is not gaining weight?

You may need to consider the food you purchase for your four-legged friend. The food you feed your dog on a daily basis can have a major impact on his growth and overall health. Before bringing home some kibble, make sure to look at a dog nutrition checklist to ensure that your dog’s food has all the essential nutrients he needs. All of these can come into play and help your pup grow.

This article will focus on why your newborn puppy is not gaining weight, steps you can take to help a puppy, and things to avoid. Remember, every dog is different, so if you haven’t looked further into what’s best for yours, it’s not too late to start!

Potential Causes

Ipuppy-weight-2f you have asked yourself, “Why is my puppy not gaining weight?”, it may be difficult to find just a single answer. It can be extremely frustrating to watch your pup stay the same size when you are feeding him well and doing everything you’re supposed to be doing as a pet parent. In some cases, a puppy who cannot gain weight may be suffering from an underlying health condition that needs to be addressed. Other reasons that your puppy isn’t gaining weight may include:

Parasites like round and hookworms may be behind your dog’s problem. Dental problems can even be the cause if it’s painful for your pup to eat and chew the dry food that you’re providing. It’s also important to remember that there are differences between wet and dry food for your pup, so be sure to look into each option to see which source of nutrients is best for your dog.

You may be surprised to learn that just like us humans, our pets can also experience allergies, even with their food. If your pup exhibits symptoms of distress such as diarrhea or vomiting after eating his meal, that could be a sign of food intolerance or a food allergy. Talk to your vet to learn how to choose foods for dogs with allergies.

If you observe additional symptoms, you’ll want to follow-up with your vet to ensure the health and safety of your pet as soon as possible. Knowing the root cause of their weight problems is your first concern, then you can talk to your vet about a treatment plan if necessary.

Next Steps

If you have had a trip to the vet and ruled out any underlying allergies or canine diseases, here are some steps you can take to help your pup put on an extra couple of pounds. At this point, you should take a close look at his diet to make sure he is not missing any vital nutrients or vitamins. When in doubt, ask your vet for recommendations and guidance. They can sit down with you one-on-one and tell you exactly what a puppy needs in order to grow and be healthy.

Once you have the confidence and know what to look for in your dog food, make sure to read the packaging – this is key. Check the ingredients to see what’s actually in the food your buying for your precious pup. Sometimes a combination of wet and dry food can be a good way to give your dog the best of both worlds.

Another good tactic is to provide your pup with multiple small meals throughout the day instead of one large one. Some dogs prefer the snacking method, which may be the key to getting your dog to eat more. Now that you have some guidelines to follow, try a few of these techniques and see if they help! Sometimes all it takes is to find a food that your pup enjoys. Once you go through a little bit of a trial and error, you should have no problems in getting your pup to put on a few pounds.


  1. Barchas, Eric. “Why Isn’t My Puppy Gaining Weight?” Dogster, 9 Jan. 2010, www.dogster.com/lifestyle/why-isnt-my-puppy-gaining-weight.
  2. “My Puppy Is Not Putting on Weight.” Pets Magazine, www.petsmagazine.com.sg/ask-the-experts/answers/72/my-puppy-is-not-putting-on-weight.
  3. “Vet Directory: Find a Local Vet near You.” VetInfo, www.vetinfo.com/vets/answers/puppy-not-gaining-weight-despite-eating.

Tags: , ,

Get 30% off When You
Join Our Newsletter

Sign Up Today
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.