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Picky Eater Puppy

May 22nd, 2005, 06:49 PM
I rescued a miniature toy poodle from the Humain Society about a month ago. She's in great health except she is the pickiest eater ever. She hates her kibble and will only eat it if she's starving. (I'm feeding her puppy science diet by the way.) I've tried putting canned food with it (she'll eat that and leave the kibble behind), wetting it down (still refuses), tried Savory sauce (still refuses), and I don't want to feed her only canned food because it is not good for her teeth.

She's only 7 months old, and I am concerned that she may have been fed human food too often, but I can't know that for sure.

I'm running out of things to try, so if anyone has advice, I'd be grateful for it.

She's my first dog ever by the way! :) Having a dog has made me so happy.

Lucky Rescue
May 22nd, 2005, 07:07 PM
Canned or dry - it makes no difference to your dog's dental health. Dry food is not better for teeth.

Feed canned if he likes that.

May 22nd, 2005, 09:25 PM
True, true... More recent studies say that there is no benefit for tooth care in dry over wet food.

Ingredients are more important than anything else... Search the forums for threads on food... There are a ton and a lot of people here know quite a bit about it.

May 23rd, 2005, 08:22 AM
My puppy pretty much acted the same away about his Eukanauba puppy food until I switched him over to Nutro Natural choice Lamb and Rice puppy food. I think it has a lot to do with it being more "natural". He gobbles it up now! I think its worth a shot and its not much more expensive than all the other brands. Get a small bag at Petsmart (if there is one around you) and if your poodle doesn't like it then take it back. They will refund your money. My pup is really picky about treats and they told me I can return the unused portion which is really cool. I have about 3 kinds to return! :p

May 24th, 2005, 12:34 PM
My 9 month old toy poodle is exactly the same - fussy as anything - it will take you time to find out what your dog will and wont' eat. That is all I have done. Learn from my mistakes. I feed her kibble as her main food, the only one she will eat is Puppy Medical and I have been trying her on testers of other kibble in preparation of when she goes onto adult food - it is just a case of trial and error. I tried adding a little canned food for variation but she doesn't like any of it - but what she does like is real cooked meat, so she has that as well her kibble. Keep trying and you will find out your dogs likes and dislikes. :rolleyes:

August 3rd, 2005, 11:10 AM
I am having the same problem now. Papi refuses to eat his food. He is a Pekingese/Spitz mix and is about 7.5 months old and is now refusing to eat his kibbles. When we first got him, he loves his food and we use to give me a mixture of dry and wet puppy food, now, he is not eating them. He like the wet food and eats that, leaving the dry food behind. I've tried giving him gravy with the kibbles, he would try the gravy by itself but when mixed with the dry food, he would ignores it all together. I am not having him eat human food but I have a feeling that my dad feeds it to him and I constantly tell my dad not to feed it to him but it's hard to know when I'm at away at work during the day. Any idea what I should do? Papi still loves his doggy treats though but he can't just live off that. It's not healthy enough for him.

We are currently feeding him President's Choice Extra Meaty Chicken & Rice. We also have the Iams Smart Puppy that we bought at the Woofstock. He's not liking either.

August 3rd, 2005, 12:12 PM
I wish I could be of more help, but my solution to getting my puppy to eat regularly was feeding her canned food. While she would eat kibble sparingly, she would never eat it when I wanted her to eat it. Since I have to work during the day, I can't have her eating while I'm gone and then need to go outside. This way, since I am controlling her eating times, she goes outside at regular times. And while I am a bit worried that canned food could be bad for her teeth in the long run, I'm making sure to brush her teeth more often than usual!

I am almost done with my job and about to start school again, which means her feeding does not need to be as regular. I plan to start her on Solid Gold kibble in about two weeks. People have been raving about it, and although it is more expensive than others, it really isn't that bad when you're talking about feeding a small dog. It was about $8.00-9.00 US for the small bag. I know Molly would barely eat that much in a month. People have also suggested Nutro and Innova as excellent choices. All are a bit more expensive, but the ingredients are just what you want.

I tried softening the kibble, mixing canned with it (which she would just pick out anyways), and pouring the "gravy" on top (gave her terrible gas). I say try a different brand and keep trying until there is something your puppy likes. People on here have mentioned that you might be able to get sample sizes from stores, so I say give that a try. Just make sure to change her food gradually so she doesn't get diarrhea. Good luck!

August 3rd, 2005, 12:13 PM
By the way, if your little icon is your puppy, he's absolutely adorable! Do you have pictures?

August 3rd, 2005, 12:45 PM
Hey Mollysmommy,

Thanks for your suggestion. Yeah, after extensive research on this website, I think I am going to try out the Solid Gold puppy food too. I just hope he will like it. Although I am not too sure if they will let me get a sample of it. But yeah, doesn't hurt to try anyway, right?

Yeah, that's my baby on my icon. I will post some pictures but I'm not at my desk right now. I will do so as soon as I got back to my desk.

August 3rd, 2005, 01:01 PM
I feed Riplees Ranch Gold and I have never had a dog refuse it ever!

August 3rd, 2005, 01:53 PM
I would have to disagree that giving canned or soft food is not going to be bad for a dogs teeth. I regularly speak to vets to try to stay on top of anything going on with the dogs health wise that I need to pass on to my students. When talking about dental care, their most common cause of dental problems are those being fed canned food. I have yet to hear through any scientific study that says it is not a factor in tooth decay. I tell my students that I do not suggest feeding canned food but if they were ever going to they need to brush their teeth afterwards to ensure that the food is not left sitting in the mouth. It is very similar to having to clean out a baby's mouth after they eat so it doesn't cause tooth decay.
A puppy kibble should have close to 30% crude protein, close to 20 % crude fat. First ingredient should be meat, more easily digestable for dogs. Corn gluten is the only part of corn that is digestable. You also want to check the food to see how many and what types of preservatives are used. There are many brands that are offering natural preservatives in their foods. Any food that you can purchase in a grocery store will have more than premium types because the grocery brands have to last longer on the shelf. There are many other things that you can also check for in the food, these are just a few of the basics.
There are several factors that can affect what and how your dog/puppy eats. It may be that they are teething. The puppy will tend to roll objects around their mouth when they are chewing or eating. It could be that the food has become stale, or you purchased a bad bag. If the puppy was eating well and it seems all of a sudden they have a problem with the food they had been eating, end of bag(usually stale), new bag(bad). Return the bag and purchase another of the same kind. Very few cases are due to a health problem or that they don't like the food. If they had been eating it fine and now they are not isn't because they didn't like the food.
The more often you change the brand/ type of food the pickier they beome. If you add other items to the food, they may eat it for awhile or they pick out the new choices and leave the rest and then as before they quit eating again, waiting to see what comes next. Maybe it will be something better in their mind so they wait it out. A dog will do whatever they can that benefits them. If it is waiting it out, refusing to eat until you offer something new they will do it. We feel bad and think oh my they are going to starve and give into them. If it were your child and you were feeding them something that they normally ate and are now refusing what would you do. Refusing to give into them will be harder on you than it is on them.
Though you shouldn't change brands often or add other foods to their dish doesn't mean they can't have other things like veggies, they just shouldn't be fed during regular feeding times or mixed with regular diet. The dog should also be eating their regular meals well before they get extras.
Don't mix brands together, each bag is balanced. Once you blend you disrupt the balance. A dog that has a regular feeding schedule will eat better than those who are allowed to free feed. To get your dog back onto a schedule first make sure they are in good health, then remove all available food but make water available at all times no matter what. Choose to feed 2-3 times a day. Usually once a puppy is 3 months they prefer to eat twice instead of 3 times. When it is feeding time place the food down for 20 minutes max. Whether they eat it or not, after 20 min the food is removed. The first, second, third and even sometimes the fourth they may not finish the meal because they think that they can go and get it whenever they want. They will figure out very quickly that if they don't eat when the food is offered it will disappear until the next feeding. Dogs are not programmed to ever starve themselves, though they do have the will to wait it out. We don't say to our kids, here is your breakfast, lunch and dinner. You have all day to eat it. We shouldn't do it with the dogs.
If you have been free feeding and are one of the ones that has a dog that is not eating, get them eating before switching back to a schedule and make sure they are in good health.

August 3rd, 2005, 03:32 PM
Wow ! That was very informative, StaceyB. Thank you very much. I will do as you have suggested.

August 3rd, 2005, 03:50 PM
Just a note after reading Stacy B's reply - I find now that Daisy is older (almost 12 months & just as cute) she'll wait it out but then gives in and eats what I've given her. I wonder it's just us human's that think they will starve .... when our pets know exactly what they are doing! ;)

August 3rd, 2005, 03:56 PM
Ah exactly, we are the ones that usually cause the feeding dilemas.

August 3rd, 2005, 04:03 PM
I cannot see why anyone would feed their dogs/cats something they do not like and wait until they are so hungry they'll eat it.
If I were a dog,I certainly would not want to eat the same dry stuff every day :D
I don't know if dogs are much different from cats,but I feed my cats a very varied diet,canned and dry and no animal is more of a picky eater than cats :evil:
Rule of thumb,for me...never buy any food that has corn or cornmeal as first ingredients,actually anything that ends in meal.
As natural as you can afford is the best choice,a bit pricey at times,but you'll save on vet-bills.

August 3rd, 2005, 04:16 PM
Well Missie the poo is a fussy eater also. I fixed her little red wagon when it come to kibbles. Little fart would lick the canned stuff off and ptwwee spit out the dry. :p So I bought a blender for her, pulverized the dry food and mixed it in with the wet. She eats like a piggy now. I have her and Sophie on duck and potatoe and they both love it. I know it freaks me out when Missie stops eating. But when she does this i stick some on my finger and into her mouth. She has learned that she will be fed one way or another and she stopped doing this. The vet checked her out and said she was just being a poodle. Fuss bucket that she is . :D

August 3rd, 2005, 04:47 PM
For those feeding cats canned. There is not a canned food that is sufficient in taurine. Also, feeding fish to cats can cause stititis(think I spelled it wrong but you get the idea).

August 3rd, 2005, 08:46 PM
I definitely have to agree with the poodles being picky eaters. Molly eats when she wants to, and what she wants to. Half the time she'll eat her treats, and half the time she'll put them in her mouth and spit them out. Same goes with veggies and fruit that I feed her. Poodles are ridiculous. But you gotta love them. They remind me of babies that put food in their mouth, make a face, and then spit it out. I swear Molly makes the same face.

August 3rd, 2005, 09:01 PM
I have 2 toys and neither is picky with their food.

August 4th, 2005, 11:45 AM
When should I switch Papi over to adult food? He is past 7 months old, going on 8 months next week.

:pawprint: Here's another picture of him.

Lucky Rescue
August 4th, 2005, 07:34 PM
For those feeding cats canned. There is not a canned food that is sufficient in taurine.

It's very important to feed canned food to neutered male cats, for urinary tract health.

Cats do not drink enough usually. Unlike dogs, they are not big drinkers because in the wild they eat meat only and get moisture from that. They are strict carnivores who need meat.

Dry food combined with not enough water can cause very concentrated urine, resulting in crystals, stones and blockages.

Cats eating canned food virtually never have these problems.

August 4th, 2005, 10:15 PM
That is not true,I only feed my cats canned,per vet advice and research.It is much better for them,same as canned is better for dogs.Nobody wants to pay for it,but it is better for them.Kibble is not good for any animal,raw is best,home cooked next,canned comes in third before any kibble.
For those feeding cats canned. There is not a canned food that is sufficient in taurine.

August 4th, 2005, 10:26 PM
There is only one species in the world that naturally eats fish. The high fat levels are bad for cats.

August 4th, 2005, 10:30 PM
What does that have to do with canned food?Research shows it is better for cats and dogs.

Lucky Rescue
August 4th, 2005, 10:55 PM
Nobody wants to pay for it,but it is better for them.Kibble is not good for any animal

Right. Dry food is easy, convenient, relatively cheap and not smelly, unlike canned, and I think that's why many people feed it. Not to mention being snowed by dry food manufacturers "Has the grains and greens your cat craves!" Don't think so.:p

Here is a very good and informative article about why dry food is not good for cats and not good for their teeth either.

August 4th, 2005, 11:16 PM
That's also where the bad stereotypes of canned food come from. People generally don't feed GOOD canned food because of the price, but good kibble is not nearly as costly. The issue with teeth has almost nothing to do with the hardness/abrasiveness of the food, it has to do with the QUALITY of the food (and breed of course). Whether you feed a top of the line wet food or dry food, there should be no difference in oral health. If your choice is between solid gold kibble and science diet canned, there will be a difference.

I am telling everybody-- If you have a picky eater, ask a better dog food store for samples of Solid Gold "Wolf King", or if you have a puppy, "Wolf Cub", or if you have a little dog, "Just a Wee Bit". Or if you have money, try the Merrick canned foods. No doggy would pass up Merricks. They're just crazy. Fishy foods tend to smell more attractive too.

I know so many people here believe that pickiness is taught to a dog, but I think that's only part of it. I add to my dogs' food, I give them pieces of my steak when I'm done, and so on, and they still wake up so excited to eat their food. It's fishy bison food, and it's TASTY. I say try out a tasty food, and if your dog is still picky, then look in the mirror. ;)

August 5th, 2005, 09:46 AM
My vet said to keep my toy poodle on puppy food until she is at least a year old. Though I have heard about doing the change over at approx. 8 months - Daisy is a year this month and I am following the vets advice. Though I have to confess, I also do feed her cooked meats, veggies, fruit, diary, rice etc. so she does get a varied diet. She tends to prefer the 'human' food to the kibble even though it is a good quality kibble, but she does eat it as a snack before bed time ... so sweet .. just like a child.

August 5th, 2005, 09:48 AM
Your Papi is adorable!

August 5th, 2005, 10:59 AM
Yeah .. just as I thought but just wanted to have another's opinion. Thanks so much, Daizy.

Yeah .. I love him to death.