Force-feeding a puppy?
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Thread: Force-feeding a puppy?

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    Senior Member Eyssa's Avatar
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    Force-feeding a puppy?

    Just about a week ago I welcomed a new puppy into my home... an adorable pom named Koda, 3 1/2 months old. At first, he was exceedingly happy-- well, after he got over the dogs sniffing him as well as the new environment. He would lick my nose, try to jump up on me, whine when I left the room...

    That all stopped just two days after I got him. He began to get lethargic, eating normally but sleeping all day. Of course, as a typical mommy with a new baby I got all frantic and took him to the vet's who said he had mobile bacteria (??), and who gave him a shot of something (I think he said it was penicillin) and then gave me some sort of pill to give the pup: half a pill in the morning, half in the evening. He's still on the pills, as well as the coccidia preventative the breeder gave us to give him, which he also gets once a day (and again which he is still getting).

    The evening after I took him to the vets, which would be the third day I had him, he pooped several times... and that was the last time he went for about two days. After those two days he finally went, then waited a day without going, then went again once today. Thankfully the feces were firm instead of soft like they had been (I know, I should've realized that soft feces weren't normal when I first got him), but gradually his appetite has decreased each day and he never seems happy to see me.

    I don't know what's up with it, but I've tried various foods... he won't eat his normal dry, so I tried to give him canned... which he ate for several days, and then decided he didn't want that either. Then I tried baby food, and he ate that only yesterday, and today he didn't want any of it. No matter whether I warmed it up or left it cold, he wouldn't eat it. And being a pom, I was afraid that he'd get hypoglycemic, so I got a dab of baby food on my finger and swiped the inside of his mouth with it to help keep his strength up... which he ate without spitting it out. I did that repeatedly, feeding him three times already today. Other than that, though, he won't touch it.

    Am I doing the right thing? My vet's out of town at the moment, and if he doesn't start perking up I'm going to call one of the other vets around. He still sleeps more than normal and doesn't play as much as a puppy should. I don't know whether it's the fact that I'm shoving pills down his throat as well as mushy baby food, but he doesn't seem to like me. It's like... he's avoiding me. When I go to check on him, or sit down beside him, he turns his head the other way. I'm by no means new to dogs... but I got this puppy so that I could raise him, so that we could form a special bond and now it's like he doesn't want anything to do with me. Bah. I feel quite dejected.

    Is that all just because he's getting these pills and because he's got those parasites in his intestines? I know for a puppy two pills a day is a lot to handle...
    Last edited by Eyssa; 02-11-2009 at 03:51 PM.

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    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    You need to keep in mind you just got the puppy, all he knows is one moment he was with his family and the next he's dropped somewhere new in some strage place with strange people and objects. It's going to take time, don't feel let down. When I first got my puppy she would crawl under the bed and stay there, she still does it but she tries to get as close to me as possible while there. What food where you feeding him?

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    Senior Member Eyssa's Avatar
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    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    Yeah, I suppose you're right... it's just that I had this image of me and my new puppy in my head for two months now... it was sort of a let-down when he got sick and started acting strange.

    And as far as food goes, he was getting Eukanuba dry puppy food, then afterwards Cearsar's wet puppy food... and then, like I said, baby food because he won't eat anything else.

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    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    I know the feeling, I got my puppy expecting her to instantly love me...she didn't get that message lol. After a week or two she was ajusted and understood this was her new home. Bonds take a long time to form, that's why they're so important because of that time spent forming them.

    Well I natrually distrust any dog food brand that can be bought at any non pet or farm supply store such as petco or tractor supply co. I use to get my dog food from there (Nutro) but I did some research on it and a while back dogs where supposedly having problems with it so I switched her to Innova...it's like $60 for a 30 pound bag so its pricey but I know its good stuff. I work at a pet spa and we give any dogs boarding with us that dont have theor own food...uhm specialty holistic food but a lot of people use Wellness, Nutro (I'm pretty sure they moved their plant), Royal Canine, I could go on but I suggest you go to a pet supply store and look into the puppy food there. Whatever food you get if you get dry you should get a can of wet and mix a little in to see if he'll eat it. I don't think baby food is good to feed your puppy over a long period of time since puppies grow a lot faster than babies do and probably need more nutrients.

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    Senior Member hulkamaniac's Avatar
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    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    Obviously you want to rule out any health issues which it sounds like your vet is working with you to do. Aside from that, I wouldn't worry about it too much. I got a dog from the shelter who initially would not eat but has changed his mind the hungrier he got. Now I'm not having as many problems with him not eating. As long as the pup is healthy, I'd wait for him to get hungry.

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    Senior Member Eyssa's Avatar
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    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    Whew, sixty bucks for a thirty pound bag? Well, I'm trying to make a little extra money on the side, so I'll see what I can do about that. ;-)

    Hm, seems like everyone's getting Royal Canin... I'll have to see how much it's priced at. And Solid Gold (I think that's what it's called) too... With today's economy, about all we can get is Purina and Pedigree. Not the best, but I'll see what I can do. Additionally, we live about an hour from the closest pet store, so that makes it hard to stock up.

    And I agree, feeding baby food isn't the best thing over a long period of time. I'm only feeding him that until he gets his apetite back... and then, once he's better, it'll be back to dog food.

    Thanks for the responses!

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    Senior Member spotted nikes's Avatar
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    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    An inexpensive food that gets decent ratings is "Chicken Soup for the Pet Lovers Soul" Puppy.
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    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    I ask you to please not feed your dog Purina or Pedigree dog foods. Their main ingredients are chicken byproduct and grain which aren't very good for your dog...actually its quite bad and it goes right through your dog, and they get very little nutrients from it.

    A coworker of mine uses chicken soup for the dog lovers soul and she loves it, and I know its a holistic food so its good for your dog.

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    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    Where did you get your puppy from? What pills are you giving him? Some medicines will give him an upset tummy if given on an empty stomach.
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    Pai
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    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    Quote Originally Posted by Eyssa View Post
    Whew, sixty bucks for a thirty pound bag? Well, I'm trying to make a little extra money on the side, so I'll see what I can do about that. ;-)

    Hm, seems like everyone's getting Royal Canin... I'll have to see how much it's priced at. And Solid Gold (I think that's what it's called) too... With today's economy, about all we can get is Purina and Pedigree. Not the best, but I'll see what I can do. Additionally, we live about an hour from the closest pet store, so that makes it hard to stock up.
    Well, the premium brands are more expensive, but you generally have to feed a LOT less per serving of them to get the same amount of nutrition, so it actually ends up saving money in the long run. I wouldn't recommend Pedigree, mostly because the main protein source in their food is corn. The main ingredient in a good dog food should be meat based, because that's what dogs digest best and get the most nutrients from.
    Last edited by Pai; 02-11-2009 at 07:45 PM.

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    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    Coccydia can take a lot out of a dog. He's probably just not feeling too well.

    You may want to get some probiotics in him, too, since he's on antibiotics.

    I'm surprised he doesn't like baby food. Have you tried chicken?
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    Senior Member Eyssa's Avatar
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    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    heat_2008
    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    I ask you to please not feed your dog Purina or Pedigree dog foods. Their main ingredients are chicken byproduct and grain which aren't very good for your dog...actually its quite bad and it goes right through your dog, and they get very little nutrients from it.

    A coworker of mine uses chicken soup for the dog lovers soul and she loves it, and I know its a holistic food so its good for your dog.
    I must be honest and frank: the closest place we have around here to get dog food from is Walmart, and unless we drive an hour every week to get more dog food from Petco, there's not a way in this world that I'll be able to get any of the good stuff. Gas prices are going up again, and added to the cost of the more expensive food, there's little I can do. I'm not the primary driver in the household... I may be plenty old enough to have my license, but unfortunately I have neither a license or a car. Short of making homeade food (which also is terribly expense and extremely difficult to mix together in order to provide your dog with the right nutrition), I don't know what else to do other than feed Purina or Pedigree. Mind you, the puppy isn't getting that type of food... just our older dogs.

    Pai
    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    Well, the premium brands are more expensive, but you generally have to feed a LOT less per serving of them to get the same amount of nutrition, so it actually ends up saving money in the long run. I wouldn't recommend Pedigree, mostly because the main protein source in their food is corn. The main ingredient in a good dog food should be meat based, because that's what dogs digest best and get the most nutrients from.
    I honestly am not a fan of Pedigree... it's just that I don't have anywhere to buy the dog food from. We live in a very rural area with only your average run-of-the-mill grocery store, with Walmart about a half hour away. If there's a way to inexpensively buy foods over the net and then ship them to our house, I'd go for that... I just don't know that it'd be that feasible, as I said above. But yeah, I definitely agree with you. I'm not a big fan of Pedigree either.

    Bailey08
    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    Coccydia can take a lot out of a dog. He's probably just not feeling too well.

    You may want to get some probiotics in him, too, since he's on antibiotics.

    I'm surprised he doesn't like baby food. Have you tried chicken?
    Well, he doesn't have coccidia... he has some other parasite, but I can't read the doctor's writing, so I'm not totally sure what it is. He is, however, taking a pill to *prevent* coccidia... plus the other medication. I don't know what all his medications are called, but they must be pretty powerful to make him zone out like that.

    And do you mean chicken-chicken, or chicken baby food? We don't have any chicken around the house now... chicken baby food is the closest we have, and he stuck his nose up to it.

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    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    Wait one sec, I know a site where you can buy premium dog food online and if I'm not mistaken its pretty cheap. Let me see if I can find it, if buying food online is also not an option then I truly feel sorry for your pets. They wont die from the food...most likely, but it's still not very good or nutritious for them.

    Here is the site

    If you look on the right you'll find a list of food available to buy online...it actually pisses me off because Innova is $15 cheaper from that site than where I get it from. Then again you may have to pay for shipping so it might balance even.

    Btw, I have never used that site nor do I claim its validity. If you do decide to buy from them, make sure its legit. I'm kinda paranoid about these things.
    Last edited by heat_2008; 02-11-2009 at 10:05 PM.

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    Senior Member agility collie mom's Avatar
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    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    Here is a good product to keep on hand. It is a high calorie supplement for sick or debilitated animals.

    http://www.amazon.com/Tomlyn-Product...4407383&sr=8-1
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    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    Eyssa, just stick with the Purina (try Pro Plan or One) and don't worry about it. It's a decent food. Times are tough and you do the best you can and don't worry about it. Don't feel guilty.

    I'm rural, also. So my dogs get what I can get them and they either like it or lump it. :P

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    Senior Member poodleholic's Avatar
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    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    Well, he doesn't have coccidia... he has some other parasite, but I can't read the doctor's writing, so I'm not totally sure what it is. He is, however, taking a pill to *prevent* coccidia... plus the other medication. I don't know what all his medications are called, but they must be pretty powerful to make him zone out like that.

    And do you mean chicken-chicken, or chicken baby food? We don't have any chicken around the house now... chicken baby food is the closest we have, and he stuck his nose up to it.

    Well, you've only had him a little over a week, so he's still adjusting to his new environment and people in his life. In addition, he's on antibiotics, which can cause nausea, which, in turn, will affect his appetite, and may give him loose stools. He should really be given a bland diet until he recovers. Poached chicken (shred w/fork while warm is easiest) and white rice, along with a little plain yogurt, or even low fat cottage cheese.

    What is this pill your breeder gave you for preventing coccidia, and why? Whatever it is, I'd hold off on giving that while he's being treated with the antibiotics 2x/day.

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    Senior Member Bellasmom's Avatar
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    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    Eyssa,
    Times are tough. I like you live a long way from the nearest city. A 70 minute drive one way. I cant afford to drive there everytime I need something. I feed my puppies Purina puppy Chow and they are healthy and vibrant with shiney, full coats and lots of energy. Dont let anyone make you feel guilty for your choice in dog food. There are plenty of others here too who feed purina, they are just not posting over here.

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    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    Antibiotics have side effects. Nausea and diarrhea are the two most common side effects of nearly every antibiotic on the market. A bland diet and rest. I'm a huge believer in the body's ability to repair itself if we let it. If I get sick, I take a day and rest. Let my body use its energy towards fighting illness instead of doing whatever mile-long list of have-to's that I have. Don't try to force puppy into being active until he's well. Let him rest. Encourage him to eat whatever you can get into him. If he's turning his nose up at the baby food, try chicken and rice, boiled up together so the rice has a bit of "chicken broth" flavor to it.

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    Xie
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    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    I'm also wondering what pills the breeder gave? Most deworming medications are taken for three - five days at the most, unless it's something like Metronidazole which a breeder really shouldn't just be handing out willy-nilly anyway.

    I know we had a sick pup come in and turned out they had been giving panacur that the breeder recommended, but had recommended at an extremely high and long dose. Panacur is used for three days straight, the breeder had told this person to use it for two weeks!

    Puppy was fine and we were able to joke with the owner that they would never have to worry about worms. It still makes me distrust any vet advice from breeders. I know there are some out there who know what they are talking about but they seem overshadowed by those who don't have a clue.

    Did you tell your vet what the breeder gave you and at what dose and length of time?

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    Senior Member Eyssa's Avatar
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    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    Update on little Koda:
    -He's a bit more lethargic today, staggering around and still refusing to eat. I'll try everyone's suggestions as far as chicken and rice go, but more than likely he'll stick his nose up to that as well. We're going to call our other vet today to see if we can get some advice as well.

    txcollies
    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    Eyssa, just stick with the Purina (try Pro Plan or One) and don't worry about it. It's a decent food. Times are tough and you do the best you can and don't worry about it. Don't feel guilty.
    Thanks so much for your understanding and encouragement. I'm going to try to find Pro Plan (which was also suggested by another member I've talked to) next time I'm at the store... It really is tough to try to get some decent food, and equally irritating when people chide you for something that you really can't fix. Thanks!

    poodleholic
    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    What is this pill your breeder gave you for preventing coccidia, and why? Whatever it is, I'd hold off on giving that while he's being treated with the antibiotics 2x/day.
    I honestly don't know what it's called... I didn't think about asking what the preventative was when they gave it to me, and the vet said that it was okay to give it to him with the other medication. But I'm going to follow you're advice and stop the coccidia preventative. I was worrying before about giving the pup all of those different pills, and I guess my worrying was warranted.

    Bellasmom
    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    Eyssa,
    Times are tough. I like you live a long way from the nearest city. A 70 minute drive one way. I cant afford to drive there everytime I need something. I feed my puppies Purina puppy Chow and they are healthy and vibrant with shiney, full coats and lots of energy. Dont let anyone make you feel guilty for your choice in dog food. There are plenty of others here too who feed purina, they are just not posting over here.
    Thank you as well for your encouragement and understanding. It's nice to know people out there that understand the hour-long drive to and from. I do wish we had a Petco close by, though... Walmart is the closest, about a half hour or more away.

    Xie
    Re: Force-feeding a puppy?

    I'm also wondering what pills the breeder gave? Most deworming medications are taken for three - five days at the most, unless it's something like Metronidazole which a breeder really shouldn't just be handing out willy-nilly anyway.

    ...

    Did you tell your vet what the breeder gave you and at what dose and length of time?
    Unfortunately, all I know is that they are little, round white pills... They never said what they were (neither did our vet) and I stupidly never thought to ask. Our vet is somewhat frustrating to deal with. He tends to only tell you if you ask, and oftentimes I forget to ask what I need to (which is evidence enough that I need to write these things down... I'm so forgetful). If I can make a little extra cash on the side, I'm going to switch most -if not all- of my animals back over to my other vet.

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