Riley is a picky eater. A very picky eater. I didn’t even know it was possible to have a dog that’s not totally food driven. Over the course of my life, I’ve lived with 20 dogs and this is a first for me.
Very quickly after Riley arrived, he decided he didn’t like the food that his breeder sent home with him and just stopped eating. No amount of coaxing helped. Going hungry didn’t help. He actually started losing weight. Can you spell S.T.U.B.B.O.R.N?
So I moved on to trying all of the following:
- Try a different brand or flavor of dog food.
I know dogs can be picky about the taste or texture of their food, so I tried both switching brands and flavors and kibble size—and even plates I fed him on. Worked for about 2 days.
- Add some variety to your dog’s diet by offering different types of food, such as wet food, dry food, or fresh ingredients like cooked meat or vegetables.
Rotated through all of the above, including pure cooked chicken! I’ve got about $150 worth of dog food that’s getting donated to the local shelter, because nothing has worked for more than about 2 days each.
- Make mealtime more appealing by warming up the food or adding a small amount of low-sodium broth or topper to it.
Check and check. And nope, didn’t even get a day out of this one.
- Make sure your dog is hungry at mealtime by sticking to a consistent feeding schedule and limiting treats and table scraps.
Yup, one thing I do with all my puppies/dogs is keep a consistent schedule and minimize treats. Didn’t matter.
- Be patient and consistent with your dog’s feeding routine. Don’t give in to your dog’s pickiness by offering treats or human food as a substitute for their regular meals.
Sounds good until Riley lost a pound. A full pound! When you’re talking 10 pounds total weight, that’s a significant drop for a growing puppy.
- Consult with your veterinarian to rule out any underlying medical conditions that may be affecting your dog’s appetite.
Vet checked. Nothing underlying. Vet and puppy person left scratching heads.
Stay tuned. I’ll report back once I find a solution. Because one thing’s for certain, if there’s anyone more stubborn than Riley when it comes to the health of my dogs, it’s me!