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Old dog, new problem - crying for food

Sakurelf
May 14th, 2008, 08:56 PM
As Angel, my beloved lab-mutt has been getting on in years (she'll be going on 12) she has gracefully entered the cushy life of an elderly dog. However, she has picked up some bad habits that we thought were lost when she left puppyhood.

In the past few months the vet has advised that we switch from one meal a day to two smaller meals, a breakfast and dinner. She is always few at the same time (within reason) every day. She's certainly not going hungry as she's gained a healthy amount of weight.

She knows the schedule well. So well, in fact that by the time 5 o'clock rolls around she will go to her dish, plop herself down and whine until she is fed at 5:30.

This behaviour of demanding food can be irritating and I'm stumped as to find a solution to it. I can't simply not feed her, but if I give in to her demands it feels like I am reinforcing this behaviour. I try to tell her to go into the living room and lie on her pillow, but this does little as she's back in the kitchen whining.

How can I discourage my dog from begging for dinner?

Zloca19
May 14th, 2008, 11:19 PM
try taking her outside, or to a different room for that half hour.. go out there with her with treats or a clicker and play fetch, or have her go through basic commands. my dog used to do that and once we distracted him til dinnertime his system just got used to not eating til then and it stopped bothering him (at least thats what we think happened.. either that or he learned that the half hour before hes fed he gets a fun activity, or at the very least snuggle time on the couch lol)

want4rain
May 15th, 2008, 10:11 AM
it might sound cruel but ii wouldnt feed her until she stops. Mister is a habitual whiner. it creeps up at the strangest times even though we have been very consistent.... he still tries it on occasion. lately here its been dinner, whine whine whine and he keeps whining. when he stops, we let him in the kitchen to get dinner. if he whines there i just put his bowl down and walk away. when he is finished i return and give him his food.

considering she is getting up in age... if it were me, i would just let her whine. :)

-ashley

bendyfoot
May 15th, 2008, 11:11 AM
I don't think it's mean, W4R. Jaida whines ALL THE TIME, for EVERYTHING, and we don't give her what she wants until she's quiet. I think the behaviour would be much worse than it is, and it's sloooooowly getting better.