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My 8 month old puppy won't eat his food lately and we don't know why. We have him wormed and we have tried a variety of nuts. We don't feed him cans because they don't seem to agree with him. He likes to eat our own food but just won't eat his own. Why is this? How can I get him to eat and is there a reason why he may not be eating?

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Will he eat if you feed him your food? You might look into raw diet if he might like it better. I never had a problem with any of my dogs eating their food. If he will not eat at all you might want to take him to the vet and have some blood work done.
I am curious Michelle, does he eat it after a good run or walk? We went through a picky eater phase at about 5 months. It was only breakfast. I noticed he would wolf down his lunch and dinner because by then he was playing hard. I know many dogs give up one meal, usually breakfast and aren't hungry till they have worked up their appetite. I tried switch to a couple other better foods actually and only messed up his stomach! What I did do was mix one tablespoon or so of canned food with his morning meal, and that is when he gets his yogurt also mixed in. He hates the yogurt and won't eat his kibble with it in there but will if the canned is on top of it. If you try to flavor a bit with canned, you only need a small amount and avoid the gravied chunky stuff. Stick with the ground chicken or beef, and perhaps use the same product as your dry food. It is usually the same ingredients with water added. It is usually the gravied meats that cause stomach problems too.
I would suggest that if he is happy to eat your food but not his own then take him to the vet for a check up, however if you regulary feed him the same food as you eat yourself then it could be a case of he has decided that what you have got is better than what he has been given. I am of the opinion personally that dogs need a set pattern for feeding and that their food is theres and mine is MINE!!!!! My 4 never eat the same as what we eat, they have the odd bit of carrot or scarps of chicken etc when we have a roast, but even then that goes in with their food, depending on what you eat or how you cook it, its not nessicarly (having a bad spelling day, sorry) good for them, ie raw potato.
Mine are also never fed straight after a walk and never walked straight after a feed. My eldest used to be fussy and would eat all of her dinner, sometimes she still doesn't, back then I was new to it all and put down her feed and left her to it, nowadays with the competition of the others she normally eats it all, and if she doesn't it gets taken away untill later on.

First thing is first though, get her checked out at the vets, espically if she wont eat human food, and let us all know how it goes. :)
We have the same problem with our Irish Charlie. He is 9 months and has progressively been eating less and less. He is happy to be hand fed with our food, and also to pinch the cats food when he can, but put down a bowl of (human grade) meat and he simply will not eat - v worried.
We had decided to take him to the vet but at the last minute decided to try raw (human grade) meat.
We have had a minor breakthrough this evening, because this was eaten up. We are going to monitor the situation over the next few days.
So Cash has turned 8 months and for some reason no one told him that he is suppose to not eat so much. In fact he wants to eat every waking moment. Driving me crazy and begging at his cabinet over and over even after he eats. He seems to be eating so much for his size and yet I feel horrible telling him no more! He is eating four times a day! Breakfast, lunch, an early dinner after his running and again later in the evening after he wakes up from his napping. And he insists on it. Won't be swayed away! He was never this bad until he hit 7 months. Do you think he is in a growth spurt of something? Ideas to curb this crazy eating schedule? Larger meals instead of four smaller ones?
It is quite normal for young Irish to go off their food and become very finnicky. Get the vet to look at his tonsils if you think he has a problem swallowing or is off colour in any way. Irish setters can get tonsillitis The fact that he will eat your food leads me to think he is fine though.

How many meals a day is he on? If he is still on 3 you could try cutting one out and giving him more at the 2 remaining ones. As already suggested I think leave the first meal until he has been up for a while and worked up a bit of energy and appetite but never be tempted to feed just after or before exercise ( risk of bloat)

A friend of mine had a young setter that wouldn't eat anything but strawberries and cream for a while! Not that I am advocating you try that!!

Try mixing something tasty in with his kibble, grated cheese, warm minced cooked beef or chicken, minced beef tripe, a quarter of a tin of Butchers tinned tripe etc If he doesn't eat it in 10 mins take it away without making a fuss and don't offer him anything until the next meal when you do the same thing. They are like children the more attention you give, frequently the more they do it.

I know it is worrying and you do have to get him eating as it is a crucial stage of his development but try not to panic. Sometimes if you pretend it is your dinner before you put it down for him, "Yum yum what have I got here? I am eating this ....... ok perhaps you can have it but don't mess about or I will take it away again" ,, may just get him going.


A product called Enervite comes in a tube and a bIt on the tongue before his meal can stimulate the appetite. I think you should get it from a good pet shop or on line from the canine chemist.

If none of these work let us know and we will give you some more ideas.

Good luck!!
My two bitch puppies nearly 6 months are right off food at the moment. I will try the Enervite as I always use Malted Kelp which does help sometimes. I have only had two bitches who were very good eaters, the others not finding a good appetite until they got to about 3 years old. Dogs I have bred have not eaten well until about 3 years old and have suddently blossomed and got to the correct weight. One was always a fussy eater especially after a season (false pregnancy) but ate like a horse after she was spayed but never became over weight despite still being fed the same amount of food as before. The only thing my puppies eat without refusing at the moment is raw chicken wings, I also feed them toast as they won't readily eat any biscuit at the moment but if they have raw, cooked or tinned food or if I manage to get them to eat any biscuit (I have about 10 different samples here at the moment) nothing upsets their stomachs. It is a nuisance and time consuming but they do eat eventually. I have never taken any of mine to the vets because they were not eating unless they also showed signs of illness.
My Abbi was the pickiest eater as a pup..... until I put her on a raw diet...never looked back.!!!..try chicken drumsticks and thighs for starters...soooo good for their teeth aswell....plenty of info on the internet..Personally, I couldn't imagine feeding them anything else now....(.very typical of Irish to go off their food sometimes though, so I wouldn't worry unnecessarily)......good luck...!!
My Henry is another very picky eater, in fact I have to admit to hand feeding him. This is OK for me as I am at home all day and he gets my FULL attention!!!! However, I am a little confused about the suggestion of feeding raw chicken wings and thighs, as a very good friend of mine, who was a Vet (sadly deceased) once told me NEVER to give my dogs chicken bones, or any other bones for that matter. After loosing a setter 20yrs ago to a twisted stomach, I am quite nervous about what I feed. I would like to hear your comments.
Fin is a finicky eater, Fin being Henrys Brother, their mother is finicky from time to time, it seems to me that Irish do become fussy eaters from time to time in their lives.
I just hand feed him now until he gets over it, I always told puppy owners that ''just pick it up and give it to them for another meal.'' well that would end up with them becoming very anorexic. So just put it in the mouth, if that doesn't upset the dog that is, and Fin just chews and swallows. He will start to eat soon...And I am sure that your boy will start eating soon..
And personally I would never give Chicken or any other bones, (but then Pamela you know what my opinion is on that matter)
I am at the moment feeding the Royal Canin with minced (human) lamb, He seems to tolerate it,
Thank you Dee. I know I can always count on you. Henry will certainly NEVER be getting any bones.....He too is enjoying Royal Canin and (human) lamb or roast chicken. I found the other day he also likes a small amount of onion sauce with his food, I think that is because he saw me eating it!!!! With regard to taking the food away and returning it for the next meal, that is taboo.... If you want to stop Henry eating, just give him his previous meal back !!!!! NO thank you....
His mum loves Hollandaise sauce....As for old food well ~Fin is the same,, fresh only. so long as I can keep feeding him and he is willing to take it then I will keep doing the taboo thing.....hand feeding him...he will start again, and it only take 10 minuets out of my day and that is nothing...If you love them you will do the best for them, And I know what you think of your wee man!!!.

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