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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-13-2018, 07:32 PM Thread Starter
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Disinterest in Food

Hey all,

My boy Zeus is a few weeks away from being 1 year old (his birthday is Oct 29), and yesterday he did something very concerning at dinnertime. Usual routine: We have him sit in his place, get his bowl ready, and give him his command to come and eat. Usually, he gobbles his food down. Yesterday, he showed no interest in it whatsoever. He ate breakfast fine yesterday, but dinner was like.. "eh, whatever don't want it". Both my husband and I were shocked because he's a dog that loves food. We tried coaxing him to eat, and he took a few bites but otherwise didn't want to. Eventually, he did eat all of his food with me standing right next to him and petting his back while he ate.

Fast forward to this morning. Breakfast routine is the same as dinner. He ate like a champ, no problems whatsoever. Dinnertime tonight was the same as last night. He sniffed his food and then came back to his bed and laid down. Cue alarmed dobie parents! It took me doing a tiny bit of peanut butter to his food to eat it, but he didn't clean up his spilled kibble like he usually does. He's not acting like he's sick. He's been playing like usual. Pottying fine. He's still on puppy food (Taste of the Wild). My husband thinks he doesn't like his food anymore, but I don't know...

What do y'all think? He's currently getting 2 cups in the morning and 2 1/4 in the evening. We upped his food about a month ago because he was on the skinny side, and he's gained about two pounds since. He's less skinny than before, but he isn't fat. His current weight is 72lbs. Have any of y'all had this issue? Should we add something to his diet to make his food more interesting? Thanks for your input!
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-13-2018, 08:48 PM
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Make a vet appointment.

Since he is behaving like his usual self otherwise, and is eating 1 meal with gusto, you’ll need to make a judgment call on whether to take a wait-and-see approach until Monday. But if he ignores another meal this weekend, I’d take him in and have the vet rule out any dental or health issue on Monday. You don’t mention anything about drinking - if there is a marked decrease in his water intake, take him to the vet right away.

You can take a look at his mouth to see if anything is lodged in there. Also check for redness or swelling of his gums, or any broken or loose teeth.

Also, examine the food. Has it expired? Does it look and smell like normal? Have you just started a new bag? It is possible he is detecting something “off” with it.

And finally, not right now, but after the vet checks him out, you may want to start switching him to an adult or all life stages food. Dobes don’t need puppy food at your pup’s age.

I’m hoping you get answers and this resolves quickly!
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-13-2018, 11:13 PM Thread Starter
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His water intake is normal. Checked his mouth and everything in there looks normal as well. He's eating everything else fine (treats) and is chewing his chew toys just fine. Thank you for your reply! We'll probably take him in on Monday to see what's up with him. His food bag is about halfway done, and he was eating it fine up until yesterday. Hopefully he gets his appetite back tomorrow, and we'll definitely see the vet if he doesn't.
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-14-2018, 07:28 AM
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I concur on the vet visit, but I also have a few questions.

Is he intact? Some intact males are HARD to keep on their feed if a bitch in heat is anywhere nearby.
Have you tried offering less per meal to see if this helps?
Have you tried offering no treats or giving him his food in lieu of treats?
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-14-2018, 07:35 AM
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Over the years - we have seen the same thing Mouser - Here's what had happened


1. Some times - it must be a faze they go threw - every one has done it one or 2 times in there lives


2. Dog food gone bad - yes it happens - We were feeding Kasia and Ali a high grade food - people food - It had spoiled - I took it back and the National pet store pulled every bag as I talked to the manager -


3. Like number one - the change of season - from summer to winter - or winter to spring - may sound silly but have seen it here - as in weather changes - rain all day - they just lay around so I guess they just don't get hungry .


4 Best of luck
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-14-2018, 08:48 AM Thread Starter
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Breakfast update: No interest.

@falnfenix yes, Zeus is intact. I'm wondering if one of the females in his obedience class is close to going into heat because he was acting like a complete fool during class yesterday, whining and making all sorts of ridiculous noises.. But his refusal to eat started Friday and he didn't go to class that day. That doesn't mean that one of our neighbors dogs isn't in heat though.. They have a ton of dogs and some are female. At least one is an unspayed female as she had puppies some months ago. We also are going to try reducing his food by 1/2 cup. He only ate a few bites this morning...so IF he eats his dinner, he'll only have had max 2 1/2 cups today. Is that too little? Im afraid he'll go back to his super skinny look.

Today when we train, I'll try using his uneaten breakfast food as treats and see what happens. Hubby checked the bag but said he couldn't find an expiration date. I'm going to check myself because, no offense husbands, but sometimes he doesn't see things that are right in front of him, lol.

@ECIN I was wondering if a change of weather could have something to do with it. Granted, the 40 degree drop in temperature is going to hit tomorrow (ugh), but it's been rainy here off and on for the past few days. Today is nice (high of 84) so we're going to the park for some community training practice and play. Maybe running around will encourage him to eat tonight.

@ECIN When your dogs went through this phase, what did you do? Did they refuse to eat at all, or did they just eat a few bites and that was it? How long did it take them to start eating normally again? Did you keep them on their same food? We were going to wait to gradually change Zeus's food from puppy to adult when he turned 1 as was recommended by one of then trainers who owns a young rottweiler who is also on TotW, but we could try starting that transition now to see if that gets him eating again. That's something we're going to ask the vet tomorrow.

Thanks yall. Needless to say, I'm stressing over this! Zeus is my baby and I hate thinking something may be wrong and I can't figure out what it is.
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-14-2018, 08:59 AM
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Mouser - Kadin did the same thing about a month ago - He drank good - but would just pick at his food - drop some on the floor and then smell it and walk off - his bag of food was getting low - so I pulled out the new bag and then he ate like he hadn't in 2 weeks - lol I just it was getting stale -

It jut could be he is getting tried of eating the same food everyday - I think - if it was me - I would go ahead and make the switch over to adult - I'm thinking of switching Mr. Business food next time .

To answer your question - We kept a good eye on him - everything else was normal - play - drink - you name it - And yes - we hit the panic button when he didn't eat -

Kasia would also do this - maybe for 3 or 4 days - then she would eat normal - Rainy - snowy days - lack of exercise and they just don't eat as much - anyway they don't here .
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-15-2018, 04:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gamermouse0213 View Post
Breakfast update: No interest.

@falnfenix yes, Zeus is intact. I'm wondering if one of the females in his obedience class is close to going into heat because he was acting like a complete fool during class yesterday, whining and making all sorts of ridiculous noises.. But his refusal to eat started Friday and he didn't go to class that day. That doesn't mean that one of our neighbors dogs isn't in heat though.. They have a ton of dogs and some are female. At least one is an unspayed female as she had puppies some months ago. We also are going to try reducing his food by 1/2 cup. He only ate a few bites this morning...so IF he eats his dinner, he'll only have had max 2 1/2 cups today. Is that too little? Im afraid he'll go back to his super skinny look.

Today when we train, I'll try using his uneaten breakfast food as treats and see what happens. Hubby checked the bag but said he couldn't find an expiration date. I'm going to check myself because, no offense husbands, but sometimes he doesn't see things that are right in front of him, lol.
Could be a combo of someone nearby with a bitch in heat in addition to the bitch in class. Could be seasonal, as mentioned. As long as he isn't vomiting, I'd be cautious and ask the vet's opinion, but I wouldn't necessarily rush him in just yet.

Here's my experience: Ripley goes off her feed at major seasonal changes. It's most obvious in the spring, after the first really hot day. Fall it's less noticeable but still happens. Right now, in fact, she's gone back to sleep rather than eating her breakfast. We monitor her and feed less until she's back on routine, but it's usually just seasonal anorexia. By the third day she's usually back on track. During this time, I kill all treats and meal toppers at dinner - we go back to basics and she gets the idea. The only enticement I use during this time is warm water. Sometimes they really prefer their kibble a little moist and warm. (Our male puppy used this trick to get ALL THE EXTRAS in his meals, then he'd eat the extras and leave the kibble.)

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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-15-2018, 04:35 PM Thread Starter
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Latest update: Zeus is eating!

We went and bought a new bag of food yesterday and gave him 2 and 1/4 cups for dinner, and after an initial test sniff, he gobbled it up as usual! I guess he sensed something wrong with his old food, like yall said. Maybe it had gone stale or that middle/bottom portion didn't taste good. Who knows! But I was so relieved when he started eating. He also ate breakfast just fine. I bought canned salmon and sardines (in water) to use to entice him to eat in case he didn't want to because I read salmon oil and fish were good for skin and coat. I didn't end up needing it but am figuring the omega 3's in fish would still be good. How often would you recommend adding fish to his diet?
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-15-2018, 05:11 PM
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This is good news and peace of mind.

I have a 5yr male intact who regularly will go off his food for a 24 hour period. It happens about once a month. He is normal by all other counts during these periods , just not interested in food. It does not cause me worry anymore.
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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-15-2018, 06:08 PM
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I don't know if you did this or not, but generally if you take your partly used bag of dry dog food back to the store (places like petsmart or petco) they will give you a refund if you have a receipt, or at least a trade-in/store credit with no receipt.

Last edited by melbrod; 10-15-2018 at 07:47 PM.
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-15-2018, 06:46 PM
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Glad to here Mouser !

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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-16-2018, 08:13 AM
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I figured he'd start eating again, but I wouldn't add any toppers. Dollars to donuts he'll expect something better the next time he does this.

We learned the hard way with our first puppy. He did this semi-frequently, to see what sort of toppers and extras he'd get.

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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-16-2018, 10:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by falnfenix View Post
I figured he'd start eating again, but I wouldn't add any toppers. Dollars to donuts he'll expect something better the next time he does this.

We learned the hard way with our first puppy. He did this semi-frequently, to see what sort of toppers and extras he'd get.
Ace got me this way. He missed a dinner or two, and I started adding incentives. Finally he just figured if he waited around long enough, i'd sprinkle some cheese on top or something.

I caught on after about a week, and now he's back to just his boring ole kibble, lol.

These dogs are too smart!
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-16-2018, 12:41 PM Thread Starter
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lol y'all are right. Knowing him, he'd wait around until he got something extra in his food again! @Chesa , lol at Ace! Goodness gracious, these dogs! Too smart for their own good
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