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Thread: Picky Eater

  1. #1
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    Default Picky Eater

    Do any of you have Cavi's that are picky eaters? I have tried everything with Charlie. Dry food, wet food, mixed, real chicken. I know this is my fault, but I've even hand fed him! He'll go days without eating! My husband thinks I'm crazy for hand feeding him and that I've created a monster. I think I have!

    I have now gotten tired of begging him to eat so today is my first day of putting his food down and leaving it for 20 min. he didn't eat it so it went in the fridge for tonight and if he doesn't eat that then in the trash it goes and we try again tomorrow. ugh! He's like have a stubborn child!!! But I love him, that spoiled brat!

    Any suggestions? Can anyone feel my pain?
    Sandy (me) Charlie (Blenheim - born 7/1/07) Lucy (Tri-Color - born - 9/15/08 )

  2. #2
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    I think you are on the right track by offering the food, and if he doesn't want to eat it after 15-20 min. take it away. It may take a few days for him to figure out that eating is serious business. No more hand feeding-EVER! They can get really spoiled if you let them. Just like I am going through with Jato, pick a really good quality food, and when he gets hungry enough...he WILL eat. Hang in there, I know it's not fun. Good Luck!!!
    Jato - Blenheim, Nov. 2007
    Zoey - Ruby, June 2008

  3. #3
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    Oh Sandy, I know exactly how you feel! My two have always been terrible eaters, no matter what I've done with them. Tried different foods, tried leaving the food just for 20 minutes, tried everything. Now, at almost 18 months, they have finally started to eat a bit better but only one brand of food. I also give them a raw egg once a week and a little bit of raw fish once a week. Hermie was spayed last week and had some blood tests done. They were absolutely fine, only her protein levels were close to the bottom limit. The vet said that they are still fine and within the limits, not to worry.
    My girls are VERY small (Hermie 4 kgs and Maija 4,6 kgs), but they are active, energetic and happy little doglets
    Eeva
    and Maija and Hermione

  4. #4
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    argh finally someone who knows what im going through. i have a very small 4-5kg cavalier called angel there was a time she would eat everything and anything but the last month she has been THE fussiest dog i have ever met and i made everything worse the same way you did i couldnt see her not eat so i would sit by her every morning picking up the yukki meat and feeding her (she ate fine this way but i am a vegatarian and i was being sick literally after every meal i fed her) i decided enough is enough and i done what you are doing now but 2 days later she had barely eaten a thing and i worried and caved in and hand fed her (i know im weak lol must be the cavie eyes ) i then noticed she was stealing my new puppies food (the food she grew up on) so i mixed a little in with her food and sure enough she began to eat more pushing her meat aside and eating the puppy meat. i spoke to my vet about it yesterday and he said her protein levels will go a little higher with her eating puppy food (she will be 18months this week) and the puppy food is richer but he said in the short term it will do her no harm but in 6 months when i wean bindi onto juniour food do the same with angel and then the same when i transfer bindi to adult food he seems to think its to do with the new puppy. anyways she has been eating fine the last few days on the puppy food and i mix it with some juniour dry food too so shes getting a little bit of both i hope the transfer goes well LOL and i hope you can find something your dog will eat.good luck
    cavaliers are like chocolate...the more you see the more you want

  5. #5
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    DO NOT CAVE IN and feed the dog! And do NOT try rotating different foods, and ESPECIALLY do not ever, ever, ever hand feed unless you are talking about a very ill dog with no ability to feed itself.

    A cavalier or any adult dog is MORE than able to go several DAYS without eating -- that is normally how canids would eat and their stomach has hundreds of thousands of years of evolution to eat just like that. Reality check! You know that if kids hold out for something better, you would not start cooking them special meals or give them ice cream rather than a proper meal, so why do this for a *dog*?

    Honestly: please do not set up your dogs to be problem eaters; this creates other serious behaviour problems as well as casuing potentially serious issues if the dog must be hospitalised or boarded and will not eat because you have now trained your dog not to eat properly. Why would you want to put your dog at risk?

    There's a detailed post in the library entitled 'finicky eater'. Follow it exactly and 99.99999% of dogs will immediately and miraculously turn into normal eaters. Most people simply do not hold firm and continue at least accidentally to give their dogs positive reinforcement for not eating, and by eventually giving in, encourage the dog to hold out for even longer periods of time. It becomes a fun game for the dog, mealtime turns into a social event with you, exactly what it should NOT be, as the dog now controls the whole eating process, and their unwanted and annoying as behaviour is ultimately rewarded. DO NOT GIVE IN!!! If they don't eat, they don't eat. Big deal.

    Please also read the article pinned to the top of the general discussion section on the thread entitled 'if you read only one thing about dogs'. If you allow the dog to manage and dictate to the household, dog ownership becomes a nightmare. And these are the dogs that are most at risk of ending up in rescue or the pound because they have now been given positive reinforcement for unacceptable behaviour; it always tends to cause more problems.

    PS: most good breeders and dog nutritionists do not believe puppies should be fed puppy food -- they would not get extra nutrition naturally as puppies, so why do we give them food that accelerates their growth artificially? Many breeders and nutritionists feels it causes bones and joints to develop too fast and puts them at risk of joint injury later in life. I don't know if that is the case but I tend to trust breeders with their long-term experience over vets and food companies. Nutrition and behaviour are the two biggest weak points for vets -- so they are generally not a great source of advice for either.
    Karlin
    Cavaliers: Jaspar Leo Lily Tansy
    In memory: Lucy
    Cavalier SM Infosite:www.smcavaliers.com

  6. #6
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    Alfs went through a stage of not eating,he seemed to grow out of it.Our new boy wont eat if i leave the room,so i have been taking 1 foot steps away from him,i am now at about 4 ft away and he is settleing down with his food,this is only exitement with him though.

  7. #7
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    Thanks everyone! I'm so glad I'm not alone in this!! So today Charlie ate all his food. But for the last week he's decided he doesn't want to eat out of his bowl anymore. He'll drink from it, but its like he's afraid of it. So this past weekend I got him plastic bowls instead of ceramic ones and I've taken his collar off as well.

    nope, he still won't eat from the bowl, but if I feed him on a papertowel on the floor he'll eat everything. Now what do I do! He's such a stubborn boy! I was just happy that he ate that I let him eat off the paper towel. Oh and I've tried feeding him on a paper plate and he doesn't like that either, just the paper towel. ugh!!!!
    Sandy (me) Charlie (Blenheim - born 7/1/07) Lucy (Tri-Color - born - 9/15/08 )

  8. #8
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    karlin dont worry my girl would never end up in the pound well i cant watch her not eat im too weak haha i know the vet probably isnt the best person but hes gotta know more than me hehe. i havent had to hand feed angel since i put her on the puppy food so i just figured at least shes eating it. i always worry my girls are too thin even though the vet said shes not but yep angel seems to be doing good with the eating thing now and im gonna keep trying to wean her back onto adult food. her behaviour is great i couldnt have ask for a better dog.

    sdarone : angel went through that stage too... like she was afraid of the bowl i eventually got her onto a paper plate and now into a shallow bowl but she forever has her ears sticky now lol
    cavaliers are like chocolate...the more you see the more you want

  9. #9
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    Angelmommy - glad to see Charlie is not the only stubborn one in the bunch! Of course it doesn't help that I buy into it instead of being firm and letting him not eat for a couple of days, but I just can't do it. I try and be firm with him, but he gives me his sad eyes and comes to cuddle with me and that's it for me! hee, hee Good thing my husband and I don't have kids! Charlie is our child and he gets aways with a lot already!
    Sandy (me) Charlie (Blenheim - born 7/1/07) Lucy (Tri-Color - born - 9/15/08 )

  10. #10
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    haha your just like me... she just snuggles up to me or stares at me like yeh my dinner is there come feed me and im a sucker for it lol. wierdly im a bit more stubborn with kids... maybe coz theyre not mine but i cant with the dogs lol i cant get angry at them no matter what they do so i have to do my best angry voice when theyre bad and leave the room but angel hates being left alone and cries her little throat sore till i get back lol on the eating thing. 2 of my dogs wont eat if i walk even a little bit away from them angel will follow me and stare at me like im about to abandon her and pip gets aggitated because she cant watch wats happening and it so she like me to sit next to her and stroke her which is odd coz i always thought she had slight food aggression lol
    cavaliers are like chocolate...the more you see the more you want

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