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Discussion Starter #1
I wasn't sure where to post this so if it's in the wrong place, I'm sorry.
Our 15 week old lab/belgium shepherd mix is a grazer. When we first got him, we tried to put his food down and have him eat it in 15 minutes and pull the bowl up even if he wasn't done. We were finding that he just didn't care to finish it, sometimes he only ate 1/4 cup until his next meal. When the next meal came around, he didn't eat much more vigorously as everyone said he would have having not finished his previous meal. We tried adding water, warming the food and even a different food. None of it made much of a difference. We decided to leave his food down to see what would happen. Turns out he will now eat a cup at each meal but it takes him a few hours of going back and forth to finish it.
This isn't much of an issue for us right now since I'm unemployed and home most of the time. I can take him out whenever he needs to go, and he's not crated while I'm home. Not sure this will work when I EVER get a job again.
Anyone else have a grazer? How does it work for you? Were you ever able to get your dog to eat in one sitting?
 

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What kind of food are you feeding? It could be might not like it very much. I recently worked with a puppy who would barely touch its low-quality kibble, but when switched to better quality food it happily gobbled up every last piece of kibble.
 

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How long did you stick to the 15 minutes and no more dinner rule? How often are you feeding him?

I would do it for at least 4-5 days, actually with my guys I don't ever really not do it, other than if they have bones or something that's going to take them longer anyway. And 3 feedings a day, or down to 2 if he's picking at them. No extra goodies or anything really either, just do some tough love and see how he does. If he's on a low quality kibble look at a better one next time, but don't keep changing the food and adding treats to it or he'll learn he can wait for steak and potatoes.

Feeding on a schedule will make things easier for you as you'll know when he's going to poop. And just because you're home now doesn't mean you can't crate him for a nap morning and afternoon as part of the routine, so if you do go back to work you can just start extending the times till he's used to being crated while you're gone. If he's used to you being beside him all day it'll make it very hard on him if you suddenly are gone all day.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I'm feeding him Taste of the Wild and also tried Nature's Recipe. We tried the 15 minute thing for a few weeks and we weren't giving him any treats in between. I don't think he would starve himself, but it didn't seem right that he was eating such a small amount of food per day and that's why we started to leave it down. The only "treats" that he is getting is the small amounts of food that drop to the floor when my kids eat. I realize that may be all he needs to make him not want his food, but I can't help this. My kids are messy. :0)
He has consistently been going to the front door to go out for the last few weeks and only has had a few accidents in the house.
 

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They will self regulate. They don't need a lot if it's a good quality food, so go by his body condition. He should have a bit of fat on him but not be skin and bones, nor should you have to dig to feel his ribs or hips.
 

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My pup is a grazer if it is just plain kibble, and she was getting lots of diarrhea. SO I tinkered and tweaked and not she eats 1/3 C kibble with a TBSP or so of wet mixed in. She loves this. Now she still doesn't eat a lot in 1 sitting. she is a large breed puppy and it seems like she should eat more at a sitting, but if she does she gets diarrhea. So instead she gets 4 smaller meals of kibble and wet in the day. If I do more of the wet than about a Tbsp she will eat only that around the kibble and leave the kibble. So far it doesn't matter what kibble it is she just liked her wet food better, so mixing gets her to eat it in a timely manner. For the first time since getting her she has now gone 3 days with no diarrhea now that I have figured out her food needs.

THe vet had commented at her last visit that pup was a little too skinny, so we will see at her next visit if the new regime that helps her eat better and poop better has helped her be more healthy weight wise.
 

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Molly was the same way. She just didn't like kibble. I tried all the different TOTW formulas & some Wellness but she just didn't like her food. She'd eat it but it would take the whole day of her grazing here and there. Since she's been raw fed, she's super enthusiastic about eating and finishes a meal in about 3 minutes. I think you just have to find the food that your dog really likes.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
We tried mixing wet food in with the dry and he really didn't care any more for it than if it were plain kibble. I guess I could try another kibble, although I don't hold out much hope that he will like it better. I was told that TOTW was one of the tastiest out there. Does anyone have any other kibble suggestions that are good quality but won't break the bank? I don't think I can afford to feed only wet daily, but don't mind putting some in his food daily.

He has normal bowel movements, and seems to be gaining weight just fine. The vet isn't worried and says just leave the food out, ugh..
 

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Is this dog a rescue or from a breeder? How long have you had your dog?

If from a breeder, then check back with them and get the same brand.

If a rescue, then I would go through the different brands of food and see if there is something that turns the nose onto. The pet stores will let you bring your dog in and you might see what the dog is drawn to. Just a suggestion.
 

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hes a puppy and its a good food. as long as hes not skinny dont worry. my danes were on TOTW for 3yrs and they only at 4 cups a day. so think about it, ho wmuch does your pup weigh? my one dane is 125lbs.
 
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