NEED SOME FEEDING ADVICE

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emerald052061's picture
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Joined: 2011-12-09

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Gunnar is a VERY picky eater. Will only eat certain treats...if he dont like it will just let it drop to the floor. I am also having a very hard time finding a dry food he will eat continually. He will munch on it thru-out the day a few mouthfuls at a time...but will just not eat a whole serving. Will eat caned food, but not a whole can.

He is underweight, I believe, as he has a defined wasteline, but I can def see the first 2 ribs. Supplement with cooked meat? something to enhance food to make him want to eat more? He is a very active 14 month old, so i presume he is burning lots of calories. He has been wormed. His Mom is also a very slim and athletic type doberman...so I think he got the "thin genes" from her.  He is approx 26" at the shoulder . Suggestions appreciated

medikay9's picture
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Joined: 2011-01-27

Well, I have 2 suggestions. Have you ever tried green tripe? A company called TRIPETT makes the canned varieties- there are 4 different kinds of pure tripe. It stinks, but boy, do the dogs love this stuff. You can find it at www.sitstay.com, or just search online and find it. Your local pet food store may also  carry it. It's very good for our pups- it contains all the natural greens and enzymes from the digest of the animal ( depending on the type you get). Usually a picky eater will gobble this up. I mix it with whatever dry, or raw, food is on the menu.

Second recommendation is: put Gunnar's food down. Leave it for 20 minutes, then pick it up. No more until the next meal. Even though Gunnar is not overweight, dogs shouldn't really be grazers. YOU define meal time.Tough love. I think you'll find after doing this consistently, Gunnar will come to realize that if he wants his meal, he's better eat it. Plus, he'll be hungry ( not eating at other times).

Best of luck with your boy- he is one handsome fella.

DJ's Dad's picture
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Joined: 2010-10-04

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The only thing about adding supplemental foods to his kibble is, he'll get SO used to eating it that way, he might not eat unless he has it fixed to his liking.  I had a female dobe once, Sasha, who had such a high metabolism rate, she stayed skinny looking all the time, no matter what she ate.  My niece has her now, and has had her for about six years, and she still is bone-skinny.  Some dogs, like some people, jut dont seem to ever put on weight. (Neither Ziva nor I have ever had that problem, LOL)  You could add cottage cheese, or other supplements to his food, and like medikay suggested, leave his food down for X number of minutes, then take it up.  When he gets hungry, he will definitely eat.

nupe's picture
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Joined: 2010-10-02

i CO SIGN WHAT JUST BEEN SAID ESPECIALLY THE leave it down for 20 minutes then take it up...trust me he wont starve himself to death...also i agree with the tripe...(from trippetes)...smells like all hell...but the dogs love it....but first thing first try some tough love...leave food down and take it up after a while..he will figure it out..trust me!!

scotty's picture
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Joined: 2011-04-06

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Our terrier is a fussy eater, spits out treats that he doesn't like (even if he liked then the day before) and sometimes he just sniffs his food then walks away with a disgusted look on his face.   I give him 15 minutes then pick it up and he doesn't get anything else until the following day.   The longest he has gone is 2 days then he clears his plate.   I used to offer lots of different food to get him to eat but honestly I think it made him worse.   I would definitely try picking up his food, as Nupe says he won't starve himself to death.  Good luck.

This is a typical age for a young Doberman to decide to be a picky eater.  Don't get pulled into changing food all the time or adding stuff to it to get him to eat - it is really easy to do, but you will regret it.

 

Leaving the food down for a short time and then picking it up is what I always do - with multiple dogs, I can't leave food down.  They either eat it immediately or they don't eat.  The learn quickly that they will go hungry if they don't eat.  

 

That said, mine have all gone through the picky food times when they were young.  Unfortunately, I often had to make them eat since they were showing and I had to keep weight on them.  I've always used the meatball method - buy cheap frozen premade hamburgers.  Take one out and nuke it till it is just warm - not cooked - mix it in with dry food ... grease and all.  Not too many dogs will by pass it. 

If they were not showing for a while though, tough love rules apply  :-)   The good news is that they all started eating like maniacs by the time they turned 2 and never looked back.

Q Tip's picture
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Joined: 2009-03-22

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You could soak the kibble with some flavoured liquid maybe...i sometimes add 1/2 teaspoon of marmite to Q's meal, every now and then a raw egg