Why Has Your Dog Lost Weight After Boarding?

While you might expect your dog to look the same when you pick it up from a stay in boarding kennels, this isn't always the case. Sometimes, dogs lose weight during a kennels stay, and your dog may look a little thinner than you'd like. There are a few reasons why your dog may lose weight after boarding; typically, this isn't anything to worry about.

Emotional Weight Loss

Like humans, dogs can lose their appetite when they are stressed or worried. If your pet missed you or found it hard to settle into the boarding environment, it may simply have lost some of its appetite. Some dogs go the other way and find it very exciting to be around a load of other dogs. In this instance, dogs may not eat as much as usual if they are a bit hyper or overexcited. In either case, your dog is likely to lose a little weight if it didn't eat normally during its stay.

Food Brand Weight Loss

If your dog didn't like the food that the boarding kennels provided, it may not have been happy eating it. While dogs may take the edge off their appetite when faced with unfamiliar food or brands they don't much like, they may not eat with as much gusto as usual and may lose some weight.

Tip: If your dog is a fussy eater, it's worth checking on the types of food a kennels provides. If you don't think your pet will like the facility's food choices, you should be able to arrange to take your own food in and have it given to your dog by staff. This service may, however, come with an additional charge.

In some cases, your dog may eat kennels food happily enough but may get an upset stomach from eating an unfamiliar food. Your pet may then have lost some weight until its stomach adjusted to the new brand.

Portion Control Weight Loss

Boarding kennels should follow state rules on feeding control, making sure to give each dog appropriate amounts of food for it size and breed each day. If you tend to spoil your dog, give it a lot of edible treats and maybe even overfeed it at meal times, you shouldn't be surprised if it loses a little weight in boarding. This doesn't mean that the facility underfed your pet; it may actually mean that you overfeed it at home.

Exercise Weight Loss

If you've placed your dog in a kennels where it can run around with other dogs and get a lot of exercise, your pet may simply lose some weight running around and playing. This may be especially noticeable if your dog is quite sedentary at home and doesn't get that much exercise.

If your pet does lose some weight during a boarding stay, it's worth talking to staff to find out why your pet is thinner. Staff should have monitored your dog's food intake and general health during its stay and should be able to explain why it has lost weight. Typically, your pet will regain lost weight once it goes back to its usual eating routine; however, you should consult your vet if your dog continues to lose weight once you get it home.