Extremely Picky Eater

Status
Not open for further replies.

cooper22

Boxer Booster
So I have posted about this before, but River my 18 month old dog is extremely picky to the point of being ridiculous. I have tried almost every kind of grain-free 4 - 6 star food out there including raw, dry, canned, freeze dried, Natural Balance Rolls, canned tripe, etc. . . He will eat the food for the first day and then not after that. I have had him at the vet and he has nothing wrong with him. My question is how long do you wait it out for him to eat? Right now he can go three days without eating anything. He wouldn't even look at the bowl of food. Of course if you have a hamburger or any sort of people food involving meat he is all over it. I am really tired of fighting with him over food, but I am also worried about how long to let him wait it out to see when he will finally eat. My routine is to put the food down for 10 minutes each morning and night and when he shows no interest (most days) then I pick it up and put it away. I have had quite a few boxers and never had one this picky - Sigh. . . I am just not sure what to do. Any thoughts would be appreciated. Thank you.
 

DebbieJen

Completely Boxer Crazy
I am not sure what to tell you. I leave Layla's food down for 1 hour and if she has not eaten I take it up. Maybe River is not ready to eat when you put the food down.

I know I have read about others putting a small amount of pumpkin in their dog's food. When we first got Layla I put some gravy on her food to get her to eat.
 

Kisaq

Super Boxer
I can't tell you how long I'd leave her without eating at all... I've never been there.

I did, however, adopt an older dog who refused to eat kibble. He'd been throwing it up for so long (skin and bone AC stray) that he would look away if you put kibbles anywhere near him. But he LOVED homemade chucky chicken stew. LOL. What dog wouldn't?

Leaving him any longer without food would have killed him. So, I started with chicken stew, and slowly introduced small amounts of high quality kibbles into his chicken stew, gradually increasing it until it was mostly kibble with a bit of chicken stew as a "juice". It took a good month to accomplish that - just to give you a time frame. I never could feed him without adding "juice" to his kibble and I had him for two years before he passed of cancer at 10.5. But I was eventually able to make juice with a McDonalds chicken patty, or one of those tiny Natural Ballance rolls. It wasn't that much trouble.

Maybe you just need to meet her halfway for a while? Maybe she'll forget about being stuborn about her food in a couple of years?

Good luck!
 

TysonsMyBoy

Boxer Buddy
Tyson is a really picky eater too... I feed him twice a day but I leave the food out for him all day to eat when he wants...
Most day if I DONT add anything to his food he wont eat it until 2pm, but on the days that I DO add something to his food he gobbles it up right away!!
If he eats at 2 pm he gets dinner around 6 pm and he will eat that right way most nights...
 

TwoDogs

Boxer Insane
He will eat the food for the first day and then not after that. I have had him at the vet and he has nothing wrong with him. My question is how long do you wait it out for him to eat? Right now he can go three days without eating anything. He wouldn't even look at the bowl of food.

How much are you offering him (portion size) and is there any chance you are overfeeding him? A fair number of my training clients will complain of "picky eaters" and upon a closer look they are almost always overfeeding. I just had a client come to me with her dog who would eat one day and then only pick at or just walk away from food the next day or two. She was worried what this sporadic eating schedule might do to her dog's growth. Turns out she was feeding almost TWICE the recommended amount. No wonder her dog only wanted to eat every other day or so! Also look at between meal snacks. Extra treats, rawhide, or bully sticks can add up.

Even the recommended guidelines on the back of the bag are just that--guidelines. Some dogs just eat less than other dogs of their same size and weight. I'd offer 15% less than the lowest recommended daily portion for his size and weight divided between two meals and see how that goes. Resist the urge to give him a portion on the high end of the guideline to make up for the days that he didn't eat--that might just be setting up the cycle of a few more days of no eating.

Lastly, how much exercise is he getting? While dogs are opportunistic eaters and most will eat regardless of whether they need to or not (that's why there are alot of obese dogs out there) every once in a while you come across a dog that doesn't fit the mold. If he is not tremendously active, he just might not be working up much of an appetite. And if he is one of those atypical dogs, he just might not want to eat even if good stuff is offered. After a day of good exercise does he still not eat? If so then I'd consider it a problem.
 

cooper22

Boxer Booster
As far as the exercise question - He gets about 3-4 miles per day so I don't think that is the problem. You raise an interesting point about overfeeding one day and then not being hungry the next day. When he finally does eat I tend to give him about 3 cups at once because it is so hard to get food into him and then the next day he isn't hungry again. I used to do 1.5 cups twice per day and he would kind of each it, but then we had the hunger strike which has been going on and off for about 2 months. I will go back to 1 cup twice a day and see how that goes. He is eating Earthborn and is only 18 months old (not neutered yet) so I am sure he could have some extra food, but I need to get him back on a routine. Thank you everyone for the input. I will keep my fingers crossed.
 

SQuirrels

Boxer Pal
A little out of the box thinking here, If he is so interested in people food what if you trick him? Pour his food in a cereal bowl and pretend to be enjoying it at the table. after you see him begging give in and let him have the "people food". This might start some bad habits of begging though, so it might not be my best idea.

I do think the overfeeding concern is valid. even if he only eats 1 cup of food a day to start it's not ideal but he won't starve to death. If you can get him back on schedule by feeding him small amounts it should be better in the long run

One last thought, are there other animals in the house? If not, why not leave the bowl of food down for longer. Growing up we had setters that always had a constant supply of food. We left food out always. They ate when they were hungry and never gained an excessive amount of weight. With my new girl Hope coming off the streets starving I'm confident if I gave her all she could eat she would eat it all and explode. Maybe River has more self control than my little girl though?
 

AmISarge

Boxer Booster
When we brought Rusty home, he was ravenous the first day, and he ate 1-1/2 cups of kibble (Beneful) twice that day. The second day, he wasn't as hungry and he'd leave his food in his bowl for 4 to 5 hours. A few days later, after reading the pointers on grain-free, I got him dogswell Happy Hips (chicken and oats), he liked it. (He was also getting over the green-stools from the "whatever" he was fed at the shelter...) We also gave him some rotisserie all natural chicken, that I purchased from Martin's grocery store. That did not agree with his system (probably too much chicken to handle), then he got into the cat's food outside on the porch...and he had diarrhea for 2 days (which ended with giving him Psyllium for 3 feedings)...His behavior was erratic during that time and I think alot of it came from his discomfort.

He has been eating Acana Grasslands, mixed with his Dogswell, 3 cups total/day for 7 days now and he's been fine ever since! Next week he's starting on his Earthborn holistic bison, and he drools whenever he smells beef in the house...I'm hoping he likes it!

I thought Rusty was "picky" at first, but it's his way of saying his system couldn't handle it. He devours his Acana (which doesn't look too appetizing) and his stools are firm. He drinks plenty of water and his behavior has improved greatly. The Vet said he looks very healthy (and he's getting neutered on Monday @ 5 years old!)
 

cooper22

Boxer Booster
Thanks for all of the suggestions. I actually have tried "tricking" him into eating his dog food out of a human food bowl, but no luck. I do have three dogs so leaving food out for him all of the time isn't an option. Over the last 2 years we have been through about 15 different dogs foods thinking that one wasn't agreeing with his stomach, but it doesn't seem to matter. I actually started him on some Pepcid twice a day to see if his stomach is just upset and he seems to be eating a little better. We have been getting about 1 cup twice a day in which is a serious improvement. Fingers crossed we continue to improve. Thank you everyone!
 

Mokarainey

Boxer Pal
Moka picky too!

So I have posted about this before, but River my 18 month old dog is extremely picky to the point of being ridiculous. I have tried almost every kind of grain-free 4 - 6 star food out there including raw, dry, canned, freeze dried, Natural Balance Rolls, canned tripe, etc. . . He will eat the food for the first day and then not after that. I have had him at the vet and he has nothing wrong with him. My question is how long do you wait it out for him to eat? Right now he can go three days without eating anything. He wouldn't even look at the bowl of food. Of course if you have a hamburger or any sort of people food involving meat he is all over it. I am really tired of fighting with him over food, but I am also worried about how long to let him wait it out to see when he will finally eat. My routine is to put the food down for 10 minutes each morning and night and when he shows no interest (most days) then I pick it up and put it away. I have had quite a few boxers and never had one this picky - Sigh. . . I am just not sure what to do. Any thoughts would be appreciated. Thank you.

Hi my pup is picky too, sh loves people food but I try not to give her any because she gets the runs. She is only 10 months old. I hear controversy all the time about feeding dogs human food. Does anyone have any input on this?
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top