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Puppy eating issues - getting worried :(

Discussion in 'Dog Health and Nutrition' started by e_clark, Jun 19, 2010.


  1. e_clark

    e_clark PetForums Junior

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    Sorry for another similar thread, but I'm getting super stressed and just would like some advice :(

    Sooty has been with me a week now and he will be 10 weeks approx. Came on Royal Canin Mini Junior 33.

    First day he wasn't overly keen on his food, but I put it down to stress of leaving the breeder, but he has not eaten a full meal since then, and is probably eating 3/8ths of a cup rather than his daily allowance of 6/8ths (if that, its sometimes even less than that he eats).

    I leave his food down for 15 minutes then pick it up, and remind him a couple of times throughout the 15 minutes as he's easily distracted and can forget about eating, but he really is just not interested. He will have a couple of mouthfuls of each meal, then back off and look completely uninterested in it. Tried soaking it and that makes no difference. He just kinda sniffs it and walks away.

    It was suggested that I give him 6 smaller meals a day rather than the normal of 4 for a pup his age, and I have been doing this all week (when it was split out into 4 meals, each meal looked so much for someone his size, so 6 was deemed more manageable for him, tbh though these meals still look huge!).

    He seems fine in himself, though he has started sleeping more and more as the week goes on, so would this suggest he's not getting what he needs?

    My mums dogs have wet food, and whenever they have eaten he always enthusiastically licks out their bowls if he sneaks in there before we lift them up - is this just because its different though?

    I really don't want to make a fussy pup by giving him other food, so I am trying to be tough, but how long should this reasonably go on for before I need to do something else about it like swap his food? It nearly reduced me to tears tonight, I'm just so concerned that I'm not doing my best for him :(

    Any other tips too?
     
  2. Lyceum

    Lyceum PetForums VIP

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    If you've tried stopping all treats, scraps etc and doing the 15 min thing and he's still not eating maybe he genuinely doesn't like the food. Maybe try him on wet food instead of dry?

    If in doubt pop him the vets and make sure it's nothing medical.
     
  3. kaisa624

    kaisa624 PetForums VIP

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    Wet food does smell more appetising. Have you tried mixing in a little raw, or just any meat or something to his dry to make it smell better?

    We put Holly's dry down as her raw was defrosting so we could cut a chunk off, and she ignored the dry until we added raw. She normally gets both at same time, as she won't touch her dry without it.
     
  4. JessiesGirl

    JessiesGirl PetForums Senior

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    Are you using the same food that the breeder was using? Or have you made a change?

    Dogs tend to respond to the smell of the food, so you can try putting some warm water over the kibble first before offering it. The heat will make it smell more.

    Did you take the pup to the vet within 24-48 hours of bringing him home for a check-up?

    Where and when do you feed him? Is he in an environment with low distractions? Is he more likely to eat of you leave the room so the most interesting thing in the room is the meal?

    Sorry to ask so many questions! Just trying to help you to sort this out.
     
  5. e_clark

    e_clark PetForums Junior

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    He's on the same food that he was fed on at the breeders. I've tried mixing some raw tripe into the dry food but he just ate around the kibble and picked the tripe out!

    He hasn't been getting any treats or anything anyways as I haven't found any that are really small enough for him and wanted to make sure he was eating first!

    Already tried adding warm water and soaking the kibble and as I said above its made no difference :(

    He went to the vet 2 days after getting him and they said he was perfectly healthy, maybe on a scale of 1-5 with 1 being too skinny and 5 being too fat and 3 being normal he was a 2.5, so on the smallish side but nothing to worry about, but apart from that a lovely healthy pup.

    He gets fed in the kitchen, which is probably the least distracting place in the house with regards to things at puppy height, though there isn't really a small area to contain him in, and he does end up just going and sitting on the beds, or hunting for crumbs of biscuits our other dogs have eaten.

    I haven't tried leaving the room, might give that a go tomorrow and see what happens, always thought I need to be there to watch him (for housetraining purposes also and to make sure hes "on track" and doesn't forget about the food) but I can see how it might help if I wasn't there...

    He's going to a puppy party at the vets on Wednesday evening, and obviously if he's really not eating that may be a bit far away to wait to ask, or should I ring sooner?

    Just odd that he ate this food at the breeders and she made no comment that he wasn't eating or anything, so why suddenyl decide he doesn't like it now (if thats the case) :S
     
  6. ploddingon

    ploddingon PetForums Senior

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    If he will eat the tripe but not the kibble, then maybe he just doesn't like that very much? Maybe that is why he was a bit underweight when you got him.

    Maybe try him with tripe and other non kibble food, and see how he ges on that, or change the kibble to something else. You can get small trial sachets from a lot of the manufacturers so you could see which one he likes the best?
     
  7. Lyceum

    Lyceum PetForums VIP

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    Sounds like he just doesn't like the dry. My two wouldn't touch dry on it's own either, soon as I started adding ram mince they cleared the lot, but you've already tried that.

    If I were you I'd swap to wet. Have a look an naturediet, natures menu, natures harvest, weinwrights. All good wet foods and often on offer in p@h.
     
  8. Bearpaw

    Bearpaw PetForums VIP

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    Another thing you can try,as iv had this with Isla,is to cut back to 3 meals per day.Isla wasnt managing 4,eating only half of each meal and i found ,for her, cutting to 3 meals really worked,as she began to get hungry rather than picking!She now eats all of her 3 meals,so still getting her daily allowance.( i do soak it so as not to give tummy ache,and luckily she doesnt bolt it down).
    May be worth a try!:)
     
  9. e_clark

    e_clark PetForums Junior

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    Thanks for the replies everyone.

    I might give the wet food a go - would I just move him across like any other food change, so gradually introduce it into his current food and gradually increase until its all new food?

    His tummy is so good on his current food, it seems a shame for him to not like it almost!

    I wonder if he may like other dry food? The vet gave us a 1kg bag of Royal Canin Small dog puppy (the vet one), which they said is similar to what hes currently on, but may be slightly different, otherwsie maybe some samples of other dry food with tiny kibbles?

    I do think maybe its dry in general though rather than this particular food, especially because if my mum leaves our other dogs bowls down and there is a bit of the gravy/jelly left in them he goes mad for it, and our other dogs (toy poodles also) have never liked dry food. Dry would be a lot easier for him to like though and I've heard wet food isn't as good for their teeth etc?

    Wouldn't it be easier if they just liked what you wanted them to! (though I spose that would be like us eating things our parents told us were good for us that we didn't like when all you really want to eat is sweeties!)
     
  10. rona

    rona Guest

    I wouldn't go messing with his diet to much at this stage, if you are happy to go onto wet food, make your choice and stick to that one, but change over gradually.
     
  11. e_clark

    e_clark PetForums Junior

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    That is what is worrying me really, I don't really want to be changing his food now when I've only had him a week, I would love to keep him on what he's on, but he just simply isn't eating, didn't eat any of his last meal :( I just don't really know what to do! Would maybe some puppy milk with the kibble work?
     
  12. rona

    rona Guest

    How about trying some sardines mixed in, you wouldn't need much and it would favour the kibble. That or something else just as smelly :)
     
  13. rona

    rona Guest

    Just had a thought, have you tried heating the soaked food slightly?
     
  14. e_clark

    e_clark PetForums Junior

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    Well I've tried some raw tripe, which I thought was meant to be fairly smelly for them, but he just ate around the kibble and picked the tripe out :eek: Clever puppy, but also naughty puppy lol.

    Could he just simply be not hungry, and the amount he needs is less than the suggested amount? (thought it is still a battle to get him to eat the amount he does, so maybe not...)

    And yes, tried warming soaked kibble, didnt work!
     
  15. rona

    rona Guest

    Another silly suggestion here, but how about natural yoghurt coated kibble, good for tummy bacteria too :D
     
  16. kaisa624

    kaisa624 PetForums VIP

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    Try cutting the meals back. When we got Holly she was fed 4 times a day, however after a couple days of getting her, we cut them to 3 and she would eat. Then after a couple more weeks she wouldn't so we started adding in raw. Like proper mixing it in, so the raw stuff coated the dry, so to get all the smelly raw she had to eat the dry, if you get me.

    Even now, if you give her the raw frozen without coating the dry, she'll only eat the raw.. naughty pup.
     
  17. e_clark

    e_clark PetForums Junior

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    So just stir in some natural yoghurt so it coats the kibble? May give that a try as then he can't eat around the kibble!

    Silly suggestions are good, I'm willing to try anything really as I am concerned about changing his diet so early on, though I would rather he was eating and getting what he needs.
     
  18. rona

    rona Guest

    Yep, don't use too much though and try and get goats milk live yoghurt, cows milk is difficult for dogs to digest
     
  19. Bearpaw

    Bearpaw PetForums VIP

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    I spoke to the vet about Isla cutting back to 3 meals.and they said it was perfectly fine,infact its usually the pups way of saying they dont need 4 meals :)
     
  20. Horse and Hound

    Horse and Hound PetForums VIP

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    Roo went completely off his food last week. I thought at first it was the heat but he wouldn't eat yesterday and after 2 days of him picking and just drinking I decided to give him a bit of the tin of "emergency" food I have (butchers puppy :rolleyes:). And he wolfed it down.

    So, I'd been feeding him the AMP minces and the Nature's Menu frozen chunks for 3 weeks no issue, but I popped into Pets at Home and bought him some of the Nature's Menu puppy pouches and a few other pouches to try out.

    He wolfed the lot down, and his biscuits last night and this morning.
     
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