View Full Version : Dylan is off his food, I need advice please.

10th April 2007, 04:12 PM
Dylan seems to be turning his nose up at his food. I don't think he is feeling ill as he has energy but I might be wrong. He is refusing to eat his breakfast even when I add a little something like grated cheese or fish. I know I shouldn't add things after he has refused to eat it as I'm teaching him to be fussy and wait for a "better offer" but when it goes on for days you get worried don't you.

Well this has been going on a for about a week. By tea time, 5pm, he is pretty hungry and has been eating his food but last night he didn't want that either. He just picked a little.

I wormed him this morning and went out. When i got home he had vomited. He is enjoying his first bully stick right now. I'm trying to make his food interesting. When I first got him, he was fussy too. I used to mix in a teaspoon of Nature Diet (soft food) then weened him onto just dried.

Should I take him to the vet?

10th April 2007, 04:18 PM
Hi Pauline - sorry to hear that Dylan isn't well. :( *HUGZ* to him!

Could he be teething right now? Faith is going crazy teething and is having a hard time eating kibble. I have her on a mostly barf diet right now because she's having such a hard time eating. He could also have just finished a growth spurt too??

Could you try giving him boiled chicken and rice and then adding his kibble back slowly? I know it's a pain. Kosmo goes days without eating sometimes too. Truth be told I usually end up taking a bit of dinner and mixing it around with his kibble. Then he has to eat the kibble in order to get at whatever I put in there.

Good luck and i hope you get it all figured out :) *HUGZ*! :hug:

10th April 2007, 04:24 PM
Thanks Sara for your quick reply I think he has just been through a growth spurt. He's looking all in proportion for an adult dog but in a mini 12lb size. That's a rough guide to his weight as I weighed myself then me holding him to get his weight. Don't know how good my weighing scales are.

I'm doing the same with his food, mixing things with it.

10th April 2007, 04:31 PM
Hi Pauline.....I think that Lily is just a few weeks older than Dylan, and she started doing the same thing over night, about 3 weeks ago. She did not want her breakfast and was barely eating her dinner. This lasted about a week with no signs of her being sick. I bought some gravy that comes in a bottle at the pet store and statred putting it on her dinner. She is eating now, but still not that excited about breakfast, which I don't put the gravy on. It may be something they go through at this age. I am thinking about trying to feed her just once a day now with some snacks in between. Let us know how it goes with Dylan.

10th April 2007, 04:38 PM

IMHO I would not give into him, I have gone through this many a time with Dudley and he will hold out for days and days without food.

I had recently changed the food from EVO to Timberwolf but found that the Timberwolf was upsetting Dudley's tummy.

They are both now back on EVO
ex: Dudley did not eat on Sunday, Monday, he would not eat his breakfast
yesterday but by dinner time he ate his food.
This morning neither one of them ate breakfast, believe me I have been
through tons especially with Dudley.
I truly believe I made him into a fussy eater by giving into him so much
when he was younger.
I would not make a fuss over it, and I would not give Dylan a Bully Stick
either until he is back to eating his kibble.

The pick up on our emotions, if he is not sick then you really don't need to give him Chicken & Rice.

10th April 2007, 04:52 PM
I just asked my breeder about it and she said they do this in summer sometimes and not to add things to his food. Then she told me Dylan's brother had been sold and I was thinkin gabout getting him so now, even if Dylan feels ok, I feel sick! I'm getting no sympathy from the kids who thought it was a bad idea anyway!!

11th April 2007, 12:24 AM
Hey Pauline, neither of my Cavaliers are breckie dogs, so I dropped breakfast from their diets. I just give them both a dog biscuit & that keeps them happy until their next meal. Even my puppy, Beau went off his breakfast really early, but he is growing nicely so I don't worry about it.

Re the fussy eating. Yeah I definitely would not be messing around with his food, trying to get him to eat, as this will only escalate the problem. Just put down what you want him to eat, then walk away for 15 - 20 minutes. If he hasn't eaten it, take it up and do not offer him anything to eat until his next scheduled meal. Then offer him the same thing again, not something else that you think might tempt him.

Also, when you feed him don't stand around looking at him eating. In the dog world, this is a challenge for the food and can make a dog anxious about eating. Take yourself off somewhere & read, or come here & chat with us on the forum.

11th April 2007, 12:51 AM
Very good advice all, thank you. I took Dylan's bully stick and chews off him after Linda suggested this. He got hungry and ate dinner, all be it at 10pm. I think maybe his raw hide chews are taking away his appetite. He has always had free access to these and he takes days to get the smallest bit off them but given the choice of nothing or Jame Welbeloved, he ate. I'll let you know what happens in the morning. :)

11th April 2007, 01:18 AM
Good that he ate his dinner :cool:

He got hungry and ate dinner, all be it at 10pm.

Be careful with the late hour feeding as he is more likely to start waking you up in the night to go poo. I feed mine at about 5:00pm or as soon as I get home from work & then do not offer any other food after that. If they don't eat at 5 then they don't eat. I am such a bitch!

Other than that, well done :D

11th April 2007, 01:21 AM
Yes I agree, it is late but I was worried. When I first got Dylan, he did this for a week and he lost quite a bit of weight. I'll stick to my usual 8:30am and 5pm feeds now. :D

11th April 2007, 01:50 AM
Very good advice all, thank you. I took Dylan's bully stick and chews off him after Linda suggested this. He got hungry and ate dinner, all be it at 10pm. I think maybe his raw hide chews are taking away his appetite. He has always had free access to these and he takes days to get the smallest bit off them but given the choice of nothing or Jame Welbeloved, he ate. I'll let you know what happens in the morning. :)

Glad to hear he ate Pauline, just continue but like Caroline said earlier or you will be conditioning him to poop in the middle of the night.:yikes :shock:

Those Bully Sticks will fill him up, I stopped giving them to my boys so much. I buy those Merricks Texas Toothpicks they love them.:thmbsup:

So happy for you, believe me I went through h#ll with Dudley not eating.
Don't set yourself up to go down that road, it is'nt fun.

11th April 2007, 02:18 PM
Dylan doesn't actually get anything off the bully stick so that can't be filling him up. He hasn't eaten again and it's 2:21pm

11th April 2007, 02:22 PM
Sorry to hear that Pauline. :( It sounds like maybe he's just done with a growth spurt or something. I am sure you know what to look for to see if he is sick or not.. lethargy, not wanting to play, etc..

If you're concerned about him, take him to the vet. All the vets I have seen probably have "psychopathic dog owner" pasted across the top of my file. Oh well, at least I have piece of mind they are fine after we've either spoken or seen the vet! :)

Good luck to you and I hope Dylan eats. I know your breeder recommended against it but like I said before, sometimes the only way I can get Kos to eat is by mixing other things in. I don't do it regularly, but it's sure better than worrying. :)

11th April 2007, 02:25 PM
Yes, I might mix something in his food if it goes on too long. You can go off your food for what ever reason. :confused:

11th April 2007, 02:52 PM
I really hope he is ok!! I just love sweet Dylan!

Have you checked his teeth at all? Zoey and Cody had horrible times teething, and I got really concerned because Zoey will NEVER turn down food but did when her mouth hurt. Poor little thing, she was just miserable!

He could just be spoiled rotten and prefering his chewies! Good luck! I really hope it is just a phase!

11th April 2007, 03:07 PM

I would not panic, please trust me.:flwr:
I know how you feel I went through it and he will pick up on your feelings.

Unless he has not eaten for 3 to 4 days I would not worry yourself about it, he will not starve himself. I used to drive myself mad with worry when Dudley behaved this way, he was manipulating me and I was letting him.:o

I would not doctor up his food you are going to end up with a very very fussy eater. This all happened to me with Dudley, if you want to add anything to his food then add Veggies.;)

This is just my opinion, I have been down that road now if Dudley does not eat then I just lift his food and he has to wait until his next scheduled meal. It sounds tough and it is called tough love.:hug:

11th April 2007, 03:22 PM
I am such a bitch!

:lol: :lol: :lol:.....I think we can all relate, these little buggers can be very manipulative!

11th April 2007, 04:10 PM
I should have read the last few posts 5 minutes ago. I just put 6 tiny slices of dry sausage in his food as his tummy has been gurgling for the past two hours. I've left the room so he can get on with it. He might just eat the sausage but I'll look later.

11th April 2007, 04:25 PM
Linda, I should have listened to you dear :sl*p: he only ate the sausage. Ok, will try your plan from now. icon_blshing

11th April 2007, 04:36 PM
def stick to your guns. jadan still misses a feed now and again but he doesnt get anything for not eating, until his next meal time. and no adding a meal time either....just because he missed breakfast doesnt mean he should get it at mid day because i am eating my lunch and he looks starved!! he gobbles it up all the quicker at tea having had to wait!! and if not then he gets it for breakfast and so on. i used to mix but now he has it plain and any extras are given after so he cant pick them out. he ate it plain before and did for a while till i thought he would miss out but he just got fussy so back to boring plain i am afraid. funny how he will eat a whole bowl plain but when it was mixed he never finished it off...maybe waiting for more of the yummy bits!! good luck and believe me there a soooo many threads on this site all with the same concerns. i know.... i either read them or wrote them. hee hee hee (not got the hang of these smileys yet so made my own up!!:) :) :) )

11th April 2007, 04:43 PM
I only feed once day -- I'm a morning feeder, after their first walk. I feed them about 2/3rds off what they will get for the whole day, as the rest will be made up for in some dog biscuits or treats now and then; and a biscuit at bedtime so no one is going hours on an empty stomach. Breakfast vanishes in a nanosecond. :cool: I've never ever had problems with dogs not eating; if anything the reverse, but honestly you needn't worry if a dog doesn't eat a meal or a few meals. They have systems naturally designed to eat a huge amount and then nothing for days. And as Caraline notes, some dogs just seem to prefer a single meal and lose interest in two. Changing food around in response to non-eating is a slippery slope towards very picky eating as it teaches the dog holding out means 1) lots of cajoling eg attention from humans; and 2) maybe something interesting and new in terms of food, a fine form of entertainment as well. :neutral:

On the other hand, rotating foods every couple of months, or feeding a varied diet, can be good way to get dogs to NOT be picky eaters but happy eaters of just about anything (eg the Garbage Guts Threesome that live in my house and say, send over anything yours aren't eating because we eat EVERYTHING...even if it is truly disgusting! adds Lily).

11th April 2007, 05:15 PM
Unless he really seems to be having problems in other areas (in which case I would call the vet) I agree with everyone else. Tibby and Sasha are both kind of sporadic in eating - doesn't seem to bother them to miss a meal, but they are anxious for the next one. Wallis, especially since I've cut back on her portions, is first in line to get her food. She hates to miss a meal!

I've never been one to try to make them eat. As the others say, leave it down for a time and if it isn't eaten take it away. I have to be especially careful of that because Wallis will clean any dish that has any scent of food left in it.

Personally, I wouldn't leave the rawhides out. They can cause a problem if you aren't careful. My dogs don't even know what they are. The only thing in the treat category that they get is 1/2 of a dog biscuit in the a.m. and 1/2 at bedtime.

11th April 2007, 06:00 PM
Well he just got up from a 4 hour sleep which he never does. I assume lack of energy from not eating but of course I am wondering if he isn't well. I am going to take him on a walk soon and see if that picks him up (despite the lack of energy). He is looking deflated round the tummy. I keep him nice and slim anyway so there isn't much room for a drop in weight here. Just looked to see if he went back to sleep and he is waiting by the front door for a walk! :dogwlk:

11th April 2007, 07:18 PM
My breeder told me the pups go through a lag phase, then a growth spurt then they often go off their food for a while, she said she doesn't know how many times she has the same phone call saying they won't eat. So I wouldn't worry Pauline unless he shows signs of illness, then get him to the vet for peace of mind

11th April 2007, 07:41 PM
My breeder told me the pups go through a lag phase, then a growth spurt then they often go off their food for a while, she said she doesn't know how many times she has the same phone call saying they won't eat. So I wouldn't worry Pauline unless he shows signs of illness, then get him to the vet for peace of mind

Hi Pauline....I think what Lisa said is right on. When Lily started this a few weeks ago, I was very worried, but she showed no signs of being ill. Usually when she wouldn't eat before, it was because she had an upset tummy, and would spit up a little and then be fine and eat. I was so perplexed, because it literally happened over night. One day she was jumping for joy for both her meals and eating it all in mins. Next day she turned up her nose and walked away. Again this morning, she turned up her nose and walked away. A couple of times since this happened, I have feed her only once a day about 4:00 P.M. and she ate all her food. I am thinking that Lily and Dylan being just 2 weeks apart are going through this growth spurt Lisa is talking about. I feel much better now knowing it is normal. Thanks for posting this topic!

11th April 2007, 09:19 PM
Alfie and Harvey have been off their food this week, I put it down to the warm weather. They are still running about and happy. I used to feed then about 5 but now I wait until about 7 as they seem hungrier then. Neither have woke me up in the night just pooed as normal in the morning.

11th April 2007, 10:00 PM
Well, I took Dylan for a walk to my daughters work then to the park where we met the fattest Cavalier in the world :rolleyes: then we walked my daughter home. Dylan barked for his dinner, ate half then went out to play. The food seemed to give him so much energy he dashed about for ages with his ball on a rope. He came in and ate the other half of his supper. I feel a lot less worried.

Thank you all for keeping tabs on us while I get used to this behaviour.


12th April 2007, 01:44 AM
Pauline, you couldn't have met the fattest Cavalier in the world because Wallis has been here in FL with me!!

(Her weight is going down slowly, but she's far from petite!)

17th April 2007, 03:37 PM
To update on this issue...Dylan is still off his food/being fussy. He has lost weight and looks skinny but not too bad. I did resort to mixing in a few tiny tiny bits of dry sausage (I'm talking less than half a teaspoon) and hid them under his food. This worked only once or twice so now I have gone back to a teaspoon of Nature Diet (very good soft food) with kibble as it coats it and he eats it all.

When I first had Dylan I did this then weaned him to kibble only. I do agree with all of you to not add stuff to his food but he was getting thin and I knew he wasn't ill. I'll get back to just kibble soon as.

Thank you so much for your comments and encouragement. :luv:

18th April 2007, 12:51 PM
Hiya Pauline,
I can understand why you would give in with the wet food when he looks thin. We went through phases where Daisy Boo looked like a runt for want of eating. However, I think you answered your own problem in your last post. Nobody wants to eat just kibble every day. He's bound to get bored of it.I use the kibble as part of the meal. Normally I mix in poached chicken fillet or hamburger and veggies. Sometimes I make a casserole with mince and veggies or cook up some fish to mix in with the kibble. Variety is the spice of life! Sounds like Dylan is bored of his kibble. By the way, we haven't had a problem feeding Daisy Boo since Brandy came to live with us. She eats every single meal in record time now. A little competition seems to help too.

Good Luck!

18th April 2007, 01:43 PM
Every meal time I add chicken breast to Marlons food, he always knows when its not in there...
So dont think adding food would do any harm at all, and I always think its no hassle to make him happier !

Does the sudden change from cold weather to hot weather (which we have had here in southern England) have an effect on dog eating habbits ?
Just a thought.

Marly certainly hasnt eaten as much in the last few weeks, but has taken a lot water drink breaks.

18th April 2007, 01:52 PM
Pauline, I hope he's doing better now. I just wanted to know that Lucky went through a similar phase just as Lisa and Shay described with their dogs.

Lucky was fed twice a day and very often at night showed no interest in Dinner. Even breakfast some times he'd turn up his nose. But when he'd skip a meal he'd finish the next one. This was at about 7.5 months and he'd just finished a growth spurt. Now at 10 months, he's eating normally again and maintaining a steady weight at about 17.5 lbs. He's thin, but he'll eat every thing I give him nowadays, and I'd rather have a thin, active cavalier (who eats what I give him) rather than an overweight one.

Good Luck. :xfngr:

18th April 2007, 03:32 PM
Thank you Joanna. :)