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Won't Eat

by Jackie

My 14 month old will not eat her dry dog food. I have had taste tests for her. I'll put out 3 bowls with different brands and the one that she eats the most over a few days, I buy. I have her water and food bowl out all the time and in one sitting she may eat approx. 10 - 15 kibbles but she can go for a couple of days without eating. I get worried, and end up boiling some white chicken meat for her. Have I trained her that after a couple of days of not eating she knows she'll get human food? Do I wait it out until she gets hungry enough to eat her dry food? She has lot's of spunk and energy but there isn't any fat on her, I think she feels kind of skinny. Please, any suggestions you may have would be helpful - I worry about her.


Please bear in mind when reading topics pertaining to health issues, that many of these questions were answered by helpful Maltese owners with no formal education in veterinarian medicine. When in doubt seek a professionals advise.

I would first have her checked by the vet and discuss it with him, to be sure there are no medical problems involved. If the dog is o.k., then I would wait it out and make the pup eat the dry dog food. I feed Iams and my little Prissy would hold out on the dry food too because "Daddy" would bake her chicken. After a trip to the vet, she was fed dry food. She would hold out for awhile then eat. She now loves her food.
-Marsha A.

I sometimes put a bit of chicken broth on the dry food to tempt my little ones when they are not eating. Hope this helps.
-Cherie Eno

I used to cook for my dogs. Every day, I'd be boiling chicken, taking off skin, seasoning with garlic, or making "mutt loaf." Well. And they would dig in and eat, making me a happy women! Well, eventually, the current recipe would get old and they would sniff at their food that turn their back and walk away! Well! I'd make something else, of course. This same scenerio would be repeated. Until I realized I was making picky eaters out of them. I was spoiling perfectly fine dogs. At one point, they would have a smorgasboard laid out for them and they still would not eat. When I took all the abuse I could stand. I finally said fine. Here's dry dog food! Eat it or die! Nobody died. As a matter of fact, they thrived. Now, that is all they ever get, except for tartar control buscuits. Guess what? They love their food! They fight over it. I also play musical bowls (5 bowls, 6 dogs) which tends to keep them competitive! Now, I open a bag, pour and I'm a hero. You might have to wait out the initial reluctance. You might even get another dog! You'll see how important that food becomes when there is a little competition for it. Good Luck.

I am with Barbara. I was always told to boil chicken and take of the skin. Try it, IT WORKS!!!

I went through the very same thing recently. After a few days of hand feeding kibbles, Sofi got tired of it and quit all together. I then bought canned food with chicken bits and added about a tablespoon to her dry food. She loved it and I eventually reduced it (canned) to zero. Tip: the canned food had to be room temp or she wouldn't eat it.
-karen mager

We have the same problem with our Maggie. She may not eat for 2-3 days and finally one night, I will wake up and hear her eating in the kitchen. I have learned that she is not going to starve. My husband finally got that through my head. Although, if I do add can food to her dry food, I usually have to put it in the microwave and warm it up for her. What a life she has!!!
-Jen & Chris

When Lucy was tiny and had been here only a couple of weeks she swallowed something outdoors that made her really sick. The vet saw it on xray but said it would pass (looked like a pine needle to me). At any rate, while she was a sick puppy I had to feed her boiled chicken and rice. Well, as you might guess, especially at that age, getting her back on her dry food was near impossible. I will not admit to how long I fed her that chicken before I had enough of boiling it. Like everyone else, I was afraid she'd starve and she only weighed 2 lb to begin with. But...the vet said give her dry food and wait it out. I took a while and lots of pained expressions on her part, but she ate and she eats her food dry now. My only concession is that she gets 1 teaspoon of the foilwrapped Pedigree along with the dry and I know that's only because I feel better about it. She loves her dry food and I think we both see the teaspoonful of wet as a bonus treat because she's the best baby in the universe.
-cathy brown

Your dog refuses to eat? Well, my maltese didn't eat for days, and I became worried sick,but lately I have had an easy time. How? -those frozen, packed( sometimes all cooked) chicken, meatballs and other meatys... Buy them, and microwave it,then frypan.Cut them in tiny bits and mix them well and add a bit of broth or soup you happen to have around.My dog practically licks the whole bowl clean!
-Jee Hye Kim

Thank you all for your suggestions. I broke down yesterday and bought a can of dog food. I added a tablespoon to her dry kibbles (mixed it good). She took the kibbles in her mouth and licked the wet food off and spit the kibbles out! Then she went back and had a few kibbles. This morning I did the same thing and she ate most of the kibbles too. Yahoo! I'll keep my fingers crossed that she continues to eat them. I'll eventually take the wet food down to a teaspoon.

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