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My dog won't eat dog food.


jfav9289

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We got a rescue dog named Paco about six months ago, and we've gotten multiple kinds of dry food and a few wet, and he does eat the wet food sometimes, but he won't eat dry food. We called the vet and he told us to mix the dry food in with the wet food and then slowly put less and less wet food in it. Well... Paco picks out the dry food and puts it on the floor next to his bowl or eats around it and leaves only dry food left in the bowl. We also cook him leftover chicken and cook the dry food in with it so its not so hard, and he still leaves the dog food in the bottom of the bowl. Any ideas? I'd like to just be able to feed him dry food because its healthier and better for his teeth and a lot easier.

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Hmmm....

 

Maybe try giving him one piece of dry food by hand as a "treat"- sort of the way you would give him a dog biscuit. Say "good boy" and give it to him as a reward. He can acquire a taste for it and associate it with happy times?????

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Leave a smaller and smaller amount of the wet in one bowl, while increasing the amount of dry in another.

 

After awhile, when hungry enough, he'll eat the dry.

And no kitchen scraps either...he has to learn!

 

Good luck!

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Have you taken him to the vet for the initial check up after you adapted him? He may have a sore tooth, or something else going on in his mouth that makes dry food painful to chew. If it's not that...then he's just being picky. If you only offer him dry food, he'll come around to eating it when he gets good and hungry. I'm sure thats what they fed him at the kennel.

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One trick I tried for a finicky dog usually works...

 

Mix the dry and wet food together really well, then microwave the food for about 12-15 seconds. Dogs do a lot by smell and this 'perfumes' the air with the scent and blends it into the dry food and the slightly warmed food increases their appetite.

 

Make sure you mix it a little after you take it out of the microwave so there are not 'hot' spots in the food to burn the dog.

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Have you taken him to the vet for the initial check up after you adapted him? He may have a sore tooth, or something else going on in his mouth that makes dry food painful to chew. If it's not that...then he's just being picky. If you only offer him dry food, he'll come around to eating it when he gets good and hungry. I'm sure thats what they fed him at the kennel.

 

Yep, maybe have sensitive teeth.

 

You can always try what they do for puppies and put a bit of water in the dry food to soften it up. If he gobbles that right up, I'd take him to the vet to get his teeth checked.

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I had the same problem with my rescue. She will eat the dry stuff when she gets hungry enough but that usually takes longer than I like to see her go with out food. A lady at the pet food store pointed out a gravy type product that some people use to resolve that problem but it was too pricy. I did like the gravy idea so now what I do is take a can of wet food and a can of water and liquify them in a blender. I refrigerate it in an old jar and pour a few ounces over her food. Not only does she eat it right away but she actually gets excited about feeding time now.

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Is Paco a Chihuahua? We've got three Chihuahuas and they are notoriously stubborn and picky-eaters. LOL

 

Seriously... what kind of dog is he?

 

I agree with taking your pup to the Vet to see if he has bad/sore teeth. If it isn't that, then he is just a picky eater. Unfortunately by catering to him, feeding him wet food and special table scraps, you're only positively reinforcing his picky eating habits. You can also try to add a bit of low-sodium chicken broth to the dry food... just enough to flavor it but not enough to make it all mushy.

 

We also sometimes mix in a Tablespoon of PLAIN (unflavored) yogurt or low-fat cottage cheese into their dry food. Mix it all up really well so he can't just eat the yogurt/cheese. Be warned... they LOVE this but it can give them nasty gas. LOL

 

If he still doesn't eat, then (and some may not like this) just don't feed him. Obviously don't starve him... but leave his bowl of dry food out and don't feed him anything else. He WILL eat it when he gets hungry enough. And when he does, verbally praise him like crazy. He'll start to understand he gets lots of positive attention when he eats his dry food.

 

Now, if he IS a tiny Chihuahua be aware that the tiny ones tend to have hypoglycemic issues so keep an eye for signs of hypoglycemia if he doesn't eat for a while. Includes drowsiness, shivering, collapsing, disorientation, seizures, listlessness, depression, muscle weakness and tremors. You you see symptoms... feed him a little Kyro syrup, honey rubbed on the gums, or sugar water... and take him to the vet asap.

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Thanks for all of your suggestions... Like i said before, we've tried mixing his dog food in everything, including water and wet dog food, and he still picks out the dry food or leaves it at the bottom of the bowel. And we don't feed him table scraps.

 

He had a check up right before we got him and we have the vet papers, and they said he was fine, but he does have a slight overbite, so it's possible that it's hurting him?

 

He will eat the food if we leave it out and don't feed him anything else, but i'd like to see him eat a little more often then every few days!

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Is Paco a Chihuahua? We've got three Chihuahuas and they are notoriously stubborn and picky-eaters. LOL

 

He is a chihuahua/corgi mix. I'll try the yogurt mix. I do still leave a bowl of dry dog food out all of the time, and I notice it rarely goes down, so i try mixing it in various things.

 

We had that problem when we first got him. He didn't eat for over a week and he was real drowsy and was throwing up and pooping everywhere and we though he might have parvo since he was kept in kennels his entire life, but the vet said it was just from not eating, so he's been eating more and more since we first got him, enough to not get sick again, but i'd like to see him eat his food more.

 

 

Thanks again for all of the suggestions.

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Well if you free-feed him (leave the bowl out all the time) then that is known to create picky eaters. And certainly don't let a bowl filled with yogurt out as it will sour and make the dog sick.

 

I would suggest feeding the dog twice a day, morning and evening. Have the dog do something to get the food (a trick... sit, lay down, spin, speak, something he knows) and when he does this, praise him and put the food down. Give him 15-minutes to eat! If he doesn't eat the food in that 15-minutes, then pick up the food.

 

Then try again in the evening. He will quickly learn that he'd better eat what is given to him.

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I grew up with a chihuahua who wouldn't eat dry food either. Fortunately she was small enough (5 lbs.) that she just ate whatever we ate (i.e., chicken, hamburger, whatever we had for dinner she got a little plate of it too).

 

Coincidentally she loved carrots and vegetables! i guess it was from eating beef stew etc. that we ate.

 

One other trick is that if she likes 'people' food, try mixing a little of whatever you're eating with her own dry food/dog food mix, and softening the wet food with hot water first. That way he thinks he's eating with his 'family'. I think our chihuahua was incensed that we got the 'good' food and she got chow, so if she got good food too she ate just fine.

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Yes agreed on putting a bowl down only morning and night. If they can eat anytime, they wait to see if they get the good stuff first.

 

One other way to make a good eater is to get a second dog as a companion. if there are two dogs, they always wolf the food down to keep the other dog from getting to it first...

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Yes agreed on putting a bowl down only morning and night. If they can eat anytime, they wait to see if they get the good stuff first.

 

One other way to make a good eater is to get a second dog as a companion. if there are two dogs, they always wolf the food down to keep the other dog from getting to it first...

 

You know, my family never has a half eaten food bowl. Our dogs are taught right away that if they don't eat in one sitting, they don't get to finish their meal. I always thought that the norm. But, our dog eats 3 times a day, at precise times in the day. We don't even have to look at our clock....our dog just plops down in front of the cabinet with the food and just looks at us.

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