Ridiculously picky and smart

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#1
Crystal has two qualities that don't go well together, pickiness and intelligence. She is very very picky, and it has gotten worse.

We have tried:
  • gravy/broth (she doesn't see this as "real food" and won't eat it)
  • we often mix in dog-friendly left overs, but she has began picking it out of her food.
  • switching up kibble. she remained indifferent.
  • just putting the food down, and picking it up within twenty minutes. she didn't eat for days and so we quit.
  • mixing in canned food. she got sick of it after a few days (even though it was different flavors)
Does anyone have any ways for her to eat her food? Raw feeding is not an option, so any other suggestions are welcome. Thanks!
 

poodlesmom

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#2
A friend had trouble getting her dog to eat What worked for her was she froze up hamburg in little balls. When it was time to feed she'd put one in a small dish & microwave it, breaking it up during the cooking. When done she'd mix in with the dog food including the liquid that was created. Worked great for her
 

Maxy24

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#4
Is she any more likely to eat out of a toy? For some reason Tucker gets way more excited about his food if it's in a toy than if it's in a bowl.
 
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#5
With kibble, Maisy can be a ridiculously picky eater. Before switching her to raw, what worked the best for her was to just not do things to entice her. Food bowl went down, certain amount of time to eat, food bowl picked up. If she didn't eat, too bad so sad. She occasionally chose to skip meals but she ate the most consistently with this approach
 
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#6
Is she any more likely to eat out of a toy? For some reason Tucker gets way more excited about his food if it's in a toy than if it's in a bowl.
That's a no :( She'll pick it up and realize it is kibble and spit it out.

With kibble, Maisy can be a ridiculously picky eater. Before switching her to raw, what worked the best for her was to just not do things to entice her. Food bowl went down, certain amount of time to eat, food bowl picked up. If she didn't eat, too bad so sad. She occasionally chose to skip meals but she ate the most consistently with this approach
The problem with this is that when we did this, she didn't eat for four days. I've tried this method multiple times and every time she just starves herself and doesn't eat.
 
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#7
So first thing is what flavor does she like.
Do you know or maybe use some human food (friendly to dogs of course) to figure it out? Maybe she likes something a bit on the sweeter side or not at all?
 

*blackrose

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#8
Maybe I'm a really mean person...but if my dog was otherwise healthy, if they wanted to starve themselves for 4 days, so be it. When we first got Gracie, she refused to eat dog food because she was used to being fed scraps/treats all of the time. I think it took her almost a week to finally get the idea that no? She wasn't getting anything else, and yes, she did have to eat it or we would take it away. During this time she got NO handouts, treats, nothing at all to eat except her food.

Obviously if the dog had a health problem or lost drastic amounts if weight thay would be different, but...I'm mean.

If she's the only dog in the household, I also wouldn't be above free feeding dry food. Again, no treats or hand outs at all, but if she's hungry the food is always there for her.
 

DJEtzel

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#9
I agree with the above. If there is no reason to believe medical issue, she doesn't get coaxed to eat. 4 days isn't that bad for a healthy dog, as long as she isn't dropping a ton of weight, she will be ok.

Over the summer Patton would go on hunger strike for almost two weeks at a time, taking a mouth full of kibble every other day or every two days... As a growing puppy, this was a concern. He was loosing a lot of weight. We ruled out medical issues through a lot of testing. He just randomly bounced back, finally... But my point here is that he went up to 10-12 days without a full meal, and aside from weight loss since he was a growing large breed dog, he was ok.
 

pinkspore

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#10
I have a similar problem getting Ru to eat things that are actually food, only he usually has rib/vertebrate/hip bones popping out everywhere by day 2 of a hunger strike. I have no idea how long I can safely starve a 6-lb dog with no body fat.

Stuff I try to bribe Ru with includes jarred baby food (beef and vegetable, macaroni and cheese), plain yogurt, and applesauce. Sometimes he will also eat a new and different food, I usually have more than one bag of kibble in the house.

I work at a dog boarding place, where getting the dogs to eat can require some creativity. Tricks there include hand feeding one kibble at a time,and mixing a little hot water and a small spoonful of peanut butter with the kibble.
 
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#11
Maybe I'm a really mean person...but if my dog was otherwise healthy, if they wanted to starve themselves for 4 days, so be it. When we first got Gracie, she refused to eat dog food because she was used to being fed scraps/treats all of the time. I think it took her almost a week to finally get the idea that no? She wasn't getting anything else, and yes, she did have to eat it or we would take it away. During this time she got NO handouts, treats, nothing at all to eat except her food.

Obviously if the dog had a health problem or lost drastic amounts if weight thay would be different, but...I'm mean.

If she's the only dog in the household, I also wouldn't be above free feeding dry food. Again, no treats or hand outs at all, but if she's hungry the food is always there for her.
I agree with the above. If there is no reason to believe medical issue, she doesn't get coaxed to eat. 4 days isn't that bad for a healthy dog, as long as she isn't dropping a ton of weight, she will be ok.

Over the summer Patton would go on hunger strike for almost two weeks at a time, taking a mouth full of kibble every other day or every two days... As a growing puppy, this was a concern. He was loosing a lot of weight. We ruled out medical issues through a lot of testing. He just randomly bounced back, finally... But my point here is that he went up to 10-12 days without a full meal, and aside from weight loss since he was a growing large breed dog, he was ok.
Thanks for the suggestions! I may try it again but it will be considerably hard to not allow any scraps or treats to be given considering there are four other people in my family, some of which will probably take what I say with a grain of salt.

I have a similar problem getting Ru to eat things that are actually food, only he usually has rib/vertebrate/hip bones popping out everywhere by day 2 of a hunger strike. I have no idea how long I can safely starve a 6-lb dog with no body fat.

Stuff I try to bribe Ru with includes jarred baby food (beef and vegetable, macaroni and cheese), plain yogurt, and applesauce. Sometimes he will also eat a new and different food, I usually have more than one bag of kibble in the house.

I work at a dog boarding place, where getting the dogs to eat can require some creativity. Tricks there include hand feeding one kibble at a time,and mixing a little hot water and a small spoonful of peanut butter with the kibble.
Thanks for the suggestions! Baby food is a good idea, I've never tried that.
 

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