How did Sansa know the hounds had not been fed?

When Ramsey said they had not been fed for seven days , she had rode off at 3:40 and when Ramsay says that he has not fed the hounds for 7 days was after this.

Then when Sansa talks to Ramsay after he is captured and in the kennels and Ramsey says that the hounds won't hurt him, Sansa reminds him that he has not fed them for 7 days.

It is not as if how much Ramsay had fed the hounds was a big topic, so how did she know about this?

  • 3
    Probably she just knows Ramsey well enough. But that's a bare minimum thought.
    – Radhil
    Dec 10, 2016 at 14:03
  • My bare minimum thought is that Jon may said something to her afterwards, then again she had rode off to fetch Littlefinger...
    – Skooba
    Dec 10, 2016 at 14:06
  • 3
    Besides 'knowing Ramsay' as suggested by @Radhil (which I think is the most probable reason) is that there was a short (off-screen, given it was not considered important enough) conversation between Jon & Sansa between when she demanded to know where he was, and her visit to him. Jon "Sansa, I don't want you to visit that vile person - he was going to feed us to his dogs if he'd won" Sansa: "Dogs?" Jon "He's been starving them for 7 days.." Sansa: (wicked grin crosses her face as Jon looks on, aghast..) Dec 10, 2016 at 14:11
  • 1
    Surely if dogs hadn't been fed for several days it'd be pretty obvious from the behaviour, although knowing that it had been 7 must have come from a conversation, as @Skooba suggests. Although no Canon answer is possible without the release of TWOW
    – Edlothiad
    Dec 10, 2016 at 14:13

3 Answers 3


While it is likely an oversight by the writers, there is a reasonable way to infer how she knows this. We can assume that Sansa's visit to the kennel to "finish" Ramsay was discussed with at least Jon beforehand, considering the circumstances. She wouldn't kill Ramsay without first making sure there was no good reason to keep him alive.

So, I think it's reasonable to infer that Sansa and Jon had a conversation about how and when to dispose of Ramsay. Sansa very well may have mentioned Ramsay's obsession with his dogs and hunting, to which Jon might have offered that they hadn't eaten in a week.

Again, I think we're filling in a plothole for the writers, but I do think it's perfectly reasonable, if not likely.

  • And you would think that he would have wanted to be there, b/c Ramsay did kill Rickon after all.
    – KyloRen
    Feb 6, 2017 at 13:52
  • Immediately after the face to face encounter, they all, including Sansa, went back to their tents and discussed strategy for the battle, as well as all the exchanges that happened in great detail ("You didn't think he'd really fight you, did you?" etc). I doubt Ramsey trying to intimidate them by saying his hungry dogs would eat their man-parts would go without mention, just in the regular back and forth, not even, necessarily, to fill her in. But, yes, probably an oversight/hole, but one that is very plausibly filled. Feb 6, 2017 at 15:21

I always found that detail to be a mistake on the writers side tbh, nowhere in the series is there a valid explanation why Sansa would/could know this without heavy speculation.

And with the books and series taking a different path, not to mention these parts of the books have not been released yet, we have no elaborate details to fall back on as we did in the past seasons.

Simple answer: we don't know, but it smells a lot like a writers mistake.

Why does it seem like a writers mistake?

  • Sansa mentioned that Ramsey "said it himself", that the dogs had not been fed for 7 days. As if she had gotten the information from him. She did not say "they told me..." or "i heard..." or "They look like..." "they haven't been fed for 7 days"
  • Technically, at the time Sansa says this, the dogs have not been fed for 8 days. This makes her words sound more like she is quoting Ramsey
  • 3
    “nowhere in the series is there a valid explanation why Sansa would/could know this without heavy speculation” — sure, the wild, crazy speculation that someone mentioned it to her. Dec 12, 2016 at 11:05
  • 1
    @PaulD.Waite my spidersarcasmsense is tingling, ok maybe using the word "heavy" is a lot, but you would still only achieve an answer that is speculative with no source. I would have to rewatch the last few episodes to remember all the details, but i do know that i had the same question at the end of that episode when it was aired, and i did go back and rewatch some episodes to see if there was any hint as to how Sansa would have known that piece of "detailed" information and i came back with the conclusion that there was no hint
    – Vahx
    Dec 12, 2016 at 11:11
  • 1
    sure — it’s conceivable that an edit or a script change meant that unintentionally Sansa wasn’t there any more to hear Ramsay’s line, and it lands more effectively if she was. But it’s also entirely plausible that she was warned by Jon, or the Onion Knight, or even a humble Stark-loyalist dog-keeper that the dogs haven’t been fed for seven days before she went in. Not everything in a TV show has to be spelled out in dialogue. Dec 12, 2016 at 11:27
  • 1
    @PaulD.Waite Yes, thats true, not everything has to be spelled out, "1 picture speaks 1000 words". Still i find this to be a writers mistake. Sansa even says "you havn't fed them in 7 days, you said it yourself". As if she had gotten the information from his mouth. Also, by the time Ramsey is sitting in that cage, another day has passed, so technically it should be 8 days by then. But even i will admit thats borderline nitpicking (or however the expression goes in english). Still she makes it sound as if she is quoting his own words
    – Vahx
    Dec 12, 2016 at 11:30
  • 1
    ah, true true — that definitely sounds like she’s saying she heard it from him. Dec 12, 2016 at 11:33

Ramsey could have said it before. There were seven days during which he could have told her that he keeps them hungry to eat prisoners after the battle is over.

  • 1
    Not really likely, as Sansa is camping with the invading Stark army at this point, and Ramsey is not.
    – Radhil
    Dec 11, 2016 at 13:33

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