Why Is My Golden Retriever Lying Down To Eat?[7 Reasons]

Why Is My Golden Retriever Lying Down To Eat[7 Reasons]

Since Golden Retrievers are needy dog breeds, parenting them is a tedious job. Further, your slight ignorance might conclude in life-threatening consequences. Thus, be cautious about every unusual behavior of your Golden Retriever, like lying down to eat.

So, why do you think your Golden Retriever lying down to eat? Usually, lying down is an innate behavior of a Golden Retriever that is natural. Besides this, old age, possessiveness, illness or disease, laziness, and fatigue are other reasons why these breeds lay down to eat.

Moreover, humans relate lying down to eat as a bad habit. But in the case of Golden Retriever, it might be indicating serious health issues like neck pain, osteoarthritis, swallowing difficulty, and obesity. So, if you want a healthy lifespan for your pal, you need to find the root cause of this behavior and mitigate it.

And to help you, I will be discussing the unusual eating habits of Golden Retriever with some solutions. Further, I hope you can get rid of these habits using the ideas of this article.

What Does It Mean If Your Golden Retriever Is Lying Down While Eating?

If your Golden Retriever is lying down to eat, it might be the instinctive, protective, and watchful habit that it inherits from its ancestor. Since these breeds were hunting dogs in the past, they lived in a wild habitat where prey needs protection to prevent the predators from stealing.

Generally, Retriever kept their prey in the paws and lay down in a position that would cover their food. Further, the jaws, heads, and spine of these breeds align in posture giving minimal pressure to muscles so they can run. Moreover, this is an alert eating position where the dogs can take quick actions when predators approach them.

Besides this, the lying down position uses lesser muscles. So, some dogs also find this position comfortable. And thus, they frequently lay down to eat.

Does your Golden Retriever lay down to eat?

Is It Normal For A Golden Retriever To Eat Lying Down?

Although your Golden Retriever might rarely eat lying down, it is quite a normal eating behavior of these breeds. The history of Golden Retriever links it with a hunting dog. So, in the wild habitat, these dogs use to eat lying down to protect their prey from the predator.

But as Golden Retrievers evolved in family dogs, they don’t need to protect their food. And sometimes, these breeds instinctively follow this behavior of their ancestors.

However, lying down to the ear might not be a natural canine behavior. Instead, it might be an indication of health problems. So, if your pal lay down to eat, look for these signs:

When your Golden Retriever shows the above signs with unusual eating habit isn’t normal. And thus, needs immediate treatment. For this, take help from the professionals as soon as possible.

Is your pet showing this behavior? What do you think might be the reason?

Why Is Your Golden Retriever Lying Down To Eat? [7 Reasons]

Lying down to eat food isn’t an unusual behavior of a Golden Retriever. And if you have a pet of this breed, you might be more familiar with this habit.

However, this isn’t always natural. And sometimes, it may be an indication of fatal medical conditions. Further, some of the reasons why your Golden Retriever might be lying down to eat are:

Innate Behavior

When you look at the history of Golden Retrievers, you will find that they were hunting dogs. So, after hunting and retrieving their food, they use to lay down to eat it.

Further, in a lying position, they use to hold their prey in paws so that they could guard and protect it. Therefore, the lying habit became a natural canine behavior for Golden Retrievers that passed through generations.

Although, these dogs eat from their bowl and don’t need to guard their food now. Yet, sometimes Retrievers like to mimic the behavior of their ancestors. Thus, they hold their food in their paws and lay down while eating.

Poor Health Condition

Due to the complicated gene pool of Golden Retrievers, they are susceptible to various health issues like cancer, diabetes, thyroid, joint disorders, dysplasia, constipation, etc. They become weak and vulnerable because of these health issues. Hence, they lay down while eating.

However, some of the most common heath hazards that make your Golden Retriever eat lying down are:

  • Neck pain: Sometimes, your Golden Retriever may have a stiff neck that makes its movement difficult. So, your pal will suffer from immense while bending the neck. Hence, it will prefer lying down position to eat.
  • Osteoarthritis: In large dog breed like Golden Retriever, joint disorders, hip dysplasia, and arthritis are common. Thus, due to arthritis standing too long for eating becomes painful for your pal. So, your pet lay down for comfort while eating food.
  • Trouble Swallowing: Some degenerative diseases (like myasthenia gravis) makes swallowing difficult and painful for Golden Retrievers. Further, due to this muscular disorder, your pet becomes weak and tired. So, it lay down to eat food.
  • Overweight: Since Golden Retriever loves eating, obesity is a common health issue in this breed. And as obesity invites various other respiratory and digestive problems, your pet lays down to eat food.
  • Digestive problems: Golden Retriever has a weak digestive system. So, they cannot digest every human food. Instead of providing nutrition, this food will harm your pal and cause stomach problems.

As a result of stomach issues like constipation, bloating, diarrhea, etc., your pal cannot stay while eating. And thus, it lay down to eat.


Although most Golden Retrievers are active dog breeds, some of these breeds are very lazy. Further, the dogs that are obese are often lazy and lay down while eating.

Moreover, laziness is a physiological term that is natural for some dog breeds. Golden Retrievers are always hyperactive and energetic. So, your pal might be lazy due to fatal medical conditions (like trauma, eye diseases, parasitic infection, ear infections, metabolic disorders, etc.).

Golden Retriever Does not Have Energy To Stand.

Usually, Golden Retrievers are highly energetic dog breeds. But due to some health issues and lack of enough nutrition, they may suffer from various diseases. And that would strain their energies.

Furthermore, the use of excessive energy that they consume makes them weak and vulnerable. As a consequence, these dogs cannot stand long enough to eat their meal. So, your Golden Retriever may be lying down to eat.

To Protect The Food

Although, Golden Retrievers have a friendly temperament. Yet, they do not prefer sharing their meal, toy, and even the owners. And if you have more than one pet in your house, your Retriever is possessive over its food, toys, and bed.

Thus, your Golden Retriever starts lying down while eating to cover its food. Besides this, your pal might also eat in this unusual position around strangers and guests.

Excessive Physical Activities

Golden Retrievers loves to play with kids. Hence, they will accompany your kids in every game. Besides this, they have their exercise and training routine.

And in this chaos, owners fail to analyze the limit of the exercise and training sometimes. So, the owners might be pushing too hard for their pets. As a result, their calorie intake fails to balance the calorie loss.

Hence, the dogs feel strain and tired. And Golden Retriever starts lying down to eat due to exhaustion.

Old Age

As a Golden Retriever gets older, its body cells start degenerating. So, senior dog fails to perform its regular functions. Besides this, these dogs are also susceptible to various health hazards like cancer, joint disorder, hip dysplasia, thyroid disorders, etc.

As your Golden Retriever age, it lacks energy. Along with this, with age, your pal’s bones become weaker. Thus, it starts lying down to eat.

Is It Good For Your Golden Retriever To Eat Lying Down?

Generally, your Golden Retriever gets a lot of benefits when it lay down to eat. And according to most breeders, it might be the best eating posture for your pal.

But when a Golden Retriever eats food lying down, their muscles receive a lot of pressure. Besides this, the movement in their upper and lower jaws will disturb the balance of flexor and extender muscles. As a result, it affects your pal’s spine and legs.

In addition, when this behavior continues for a longer time, your pal’s muscles become weak. And thus, your pal suffers from various health issues. Furthermore, the pain they experience during this condition degrades their health even more.

How frequently does your pal lay down to eat?

What do you do to stop them?

What Are The Problems When Your Golden Retriever Eats Lying Down?

As we know, when a Golden Retrieve eats more frequently in a lying down position, it increases the pressure in the abdominal muscles. Thus, your pal’s abdominal muscles become weak. And a result, your pal fails to digest its food properly.

Moreover, the problems that your pal face when it eats lying down are:

  • Bloating
  • Constipation
  • Immense abdominal pain
  • Eating disorder

Furthermore, when your Golden Retriever eats lying down, there is a lesser area for the mobility of food. So, it might also obstruct the digestive passage. Therefore, it is essential to stop your pal from eating in this posture.

But how to stop your Golden Retriever from eating in a lying position?

What To Do If Your Golden Retriever Lays Down To Eat?

Since lying down while eating might lead to various health problems in your pal, it is necessary to stop this habit of your pal. Therefore, some helpful ideas to stop your Golden Retriever from lying down to eat are:

Consult With The Professionals

As we know, Golden Retrievers might be lying down while eating due to some medical conditions. So, you should consult with the Vet as soon as you notice such habits in your pal.

Since the Vet can diagnose your pal’s problem, you will get to know the root cause of its unusual eating habit. Besides this, the Vet will also prescribe medicines to mitigate the health issue. Along with this, he might also give suggestions for an effective diet plan and training sessions for a healthier and happier lifespan for your Golden Retriever.

Moreover, after eliminating your Golden Retriever’s problem, it is less likely to eat lying down.

Limit The Space

When you limit the space, your pal might not get enough area to lay down. So, limited space compels your Golden Retriever to stand while eating.

For this, you can use a crate box and make a hole-in eat at the height of your pal. Further, the hole must be wide enough to adjust your pal’s mouth.

After preparing the crate box, keep your pal inside the box. And serve its food outside the box near the prepared hole. In this way, you Golden Retriever must stand and struggle to eat food. So, it prevents your pal from lying down while eating.

However, your dog might be aggressive sometimes when you limit space. So, be careful that the food you serve is accessible.

Elevated Dog Bowl

In dog breeds more susceptible to gastrointestinal problems like constipation, bloating, or diarrhea like Golden Retriever eating posture plays an immense role. Usually, an inappropriate eating position affects the weaker digestive system of the Retriever and makes its health condition worse.

So, an elevated dog bowl is the best way to increase the surface area of the digestive system. And thus, it promotes proper digestion and a healthier lifespan of Golden Retriever.

However, there is always a debate between the pros and cons of using the elevated bowl. And since both sides have valid justification, use it yourself to know the truth. For this, you can buy the ones readily available in the market and has good reviews like:

Make Your Golden Retriever Comfortable

Some Golden Retrievers might be suffering from critical medical conditions. So, they are lying down to eat in search of comfort. Therefore, you must try to make your pet comfortable when it eats its meal.

For this, you must include healthy natural snacks in your pal’s diet. Besides this, analyze the calorie loss and calorie intake to prevent exhaustion in your pal. Further, you can also use collars to support your pal’s neck.

Let Your Golden Retriever Lay Down

Lying down to eat food might not always indicate health problems or discomfort. Since it is an innate canine behavior of your Golden Retriever, sometimes your pet might be lying down to eat naturally. In such a case, you shouldn’t worry about your pal.

Just leave your pet to finish its food. But if your pal starts frequently following this behavior, you must be conscious and take actions to stop it.

Do you think all these ideas can help you to stop your pet?

How did you stop your Golden Retriever?

What Are The Things To Consider When Your Golden Retriever Is Laying Down To Eat?

Parenting a Golden Retriever isn’t as easy as it seems. You must be careful in every step and conscious about every decision you make. Besides this, your pal also needs your complete attention and care.

However, when you start following majors to stop your pal from eating in a lying position, you must consider the following things:

When Did Your Golden Retriever Start Lying Down To Eat?

If your Golden Retriever has recently started to lay down while eating, this behavior might be a consequence of an unpleasant event or health condition.

When your pal suddenly starts lying down to eat, it might be ill, injured, or tired. Thus, try reducing your pet’s exercising and training time or give some days of break. If the cause of your pet’s unusual behavior is exhaustion, its eating habit becomes normal. And in this case, you might not need to worry.

Furthermore, if your pal still prefers lying down while eating, it might be due to health problems. So, you must take them to the Vet for a health checkup to know the case. After you are aware of the cause, you should follow the Vet’s suggestion to mitigate the illness.

Is Your Golden Retriever Always Lying Down To Eat?

If your Golden Retriever always lays down while eating, it might be your pal’s natural behavior. And this doesn’t indicate a serious health hazard. But if your pal continues to lay down every time it eats food, it might suffer from health problems like bloating and constipation.

Thus, if you want to prevent the possibility of such an issue in your pet, stop it soon. For this, you can follow the ideas mentioned above.

Are There Any Other Abnormal Signs In Your Golden Retriever?

Since lying down to eat is an innate behavior of a Golden Retriever, you must look for other signs before taking your pal to the Vet. When your dog shows abnormal behavior like hiding, crying, whining, excessive barking, tiredness, or loss of interest in food and toys, it might be having some health issues.

However, if all other behavior of your pal is normal except lying down while eating, it is not a serious issue. So, you don’t need to worry. Just try to make your pet comfortable.

I hope this article is informative and you knew more about your pat through it.

Summing up, as long as your Golden Retriever is happy and eats well, the position in which it is eating isn’t a concern. Like different personalities of humans, every Golden Retriever likes to comfort themselves in their way. So, instead of worrying about minor useless things, focus on your Golden Retriever’s care.

Play with your Golden Retriever. Make memories and take pictures of your Golden Retriever’s contagious smile. Give your pal a healthy lifestyle. But don’t hesitate to make mistakes because you can learn more from your mistakes.

Do you have any suggestions or queries on this topic?

Please leave your reviews and thoughts in the comments.

Scroll to Top