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We have a now 6 monthish old cavalier king charles spaniel who just got neutered about 3 weeks ago, as well as a hernia fixed.

Since he came home, he ate really slowly unless we hand fed him, even that was slow.
Then he basically stopped wanting to eat his food, and only wanted cat food.

Prior to his surgery, we had gotten him a bunch of brands of food to see what he liked. 3-4 good brands, with different flavors (not at home atm). He loved wellness core. Now, he loves cat food, sometimes.

Its a struggle to get him to eat anything, though. He eats his treats well. He sometimes eats wet food if given to him, other times not. Sometimes he skips entire meals.

We're thinking about buying more brands of foods, but, I don't want to waste a bunch of money on a lot of brands he wont eat.

Has anyone else experiences anything similar?
 

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Sounds like a follow-up vet visit might be in order.

I would discourage you from feeding him cat food. Most dogs really like cat food, but it's to particularly good for them. Cats and dogs have very different dietary needs.

Sounds like a follow-up vet visit might be in order.

I would discourage you from feeding him cat food. Most dogs really like cat food, but it's to particularly good for them. Cats and dogs have very different dietary needs.
 

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I'd get him to the vet since this started after his surgery. He could be in pain or something. Dogs hide pain well and it can be difficult to tell if that's the problem.

Cat food is okay for dogs but dog food is bad for cats to the point they will get sick and possibly die. It is far richer so you would feed a lot less.

Have you tried spiking the food with warm water or flavored water? Or mix a little wet food with water to make a healthy gravy and mix that into the kibble? Have you tried tough love? Makes my stomach clench but picking up the food dish after 20 minutes and offering again at the next meal time helps train your dog to eat at meal times. No treats! Or if he eats measure how much he ate and only offer that until you see him diving in and finishing in a reasonable length of time then increasing the amount of food slowly so he continues to clean his bowl.

How much are you feeding him? He may be mostly grown and need less food now. Unless he is getting actually skinny then he's eating enough food. Skinny for me means hip bones are sticking out although some dogs are at a good weight when hip bones stick out. Otherwise you want to feel all bones but not see any but the shadow of the last couple ribs. Do not go by breed standard as he may be heavier or lighter, taller or shorter than those numbers.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Ill stop giving treats when he potties, but I don't know thats its a "pain" thing because he will literally eat people food, cat food, and as of last night ate super well with some Instinct chicken topper on his food.

Maybe its a scent thing, Im not sure, but i made a vet appointment monday and ill write some more detailed stuff later (by monday night!)
 

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You never know. My first dog developed kidney disease late in life. Kidney dogs stop eating because they get acid stomach. They will eat new foods because it never caused a stomach ache then refuse it next time because they got a tummy ache.

Seems to me if he isn't getting skinny he simply needs less food now and your concern is making him anxious and less likely to eat out of his bowl at meal time. He's a little guy. My 13 pounders get 2 weighed ounces of Ziwipeak a DAY or 4 ounces of wet raw. Your guy is a bit larger I expect and might need half again as much.
 

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I have a small breed dog who recently stopped eating dog food, too. It isn't uncommon with small breed dogs for whatever reason. He will sometimes eat half of his breakfast (kibble with warm water) but will basically not eat any other form of dog food, even his dinner which I add goodies too. At one point he didn't eat for over 36 hours before I caved and gave him some of my dinner. I thought it was the particular brand I was feeding, but he won't eat any of the foods he usually eats, and no cans, sardines, water, broth, etc mixed into his food will make him eat, either.

Since he's small and it's affordable to do so, and I have the time on the weekends to cook, I've basically decided to just home cook for him. I feel bad forcing him to eat food that he hates. My other dogs love their kibble so I just add some goodies into their meals now and then as a treat and I don't feel too bad.

I'd go to the vet appointment just to get an all clear and be sure it isn't a legitimate medical reason that he isn't eating. Then you can decide from there how you want to proceed - tough love, home cooking, or finding some sort of food combination that will get him to eat.

Also, often you can email the companies and ask for samples of the dog food and they'll send you small samples to test to see if he likes them before you actually buy the food.
 

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Sorry for the late update -- its been so hectic!

Anyway, two weeks later, we really arent any closer. The vet said hes fine. He still really struggles in eating food that we give him thats kibble, and mostly wet too. He readily, and wantingly, wants to eat treats (we've almost cut this out completely for peeing/pooping) but he is very quick to eat when hes given the cats food (I've even changed the cats food since then)

He seemingly loves dehydrated "bits" that are in some of the Raw + Kibble
He doesnt really like Fromm, Wellness Core, Iams, Merrick, Stella And Chewy Raw infused, instinct raw mixture with dry -- he still wants cat food.

And if i let the cats take a bit of his food, he wants it then.

I struggle with finding him (and the cats) a food brand so its less of a struggle to feed him :(

He does prefer Orijen so far to any other dry food I've given him, I wonder if its because of the high protein content? However, that being said, I don't necessarily want him on a food that is THAT expensive -- its a bit out of my budget month to month :/
 

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If the vet tells you he is fine then he is eating plenty of food. Some dogs about live on air, it's scary. My dogs get fed 'air' because they will inhale as much as they are offered and would get fat. How much is he eating? He may need as little as 200-400 calories a day to maintain a healthy weight and have plenty of energy. That is about 1/2 cup of Orijen a day.

There are other energy dense kibbles that might work for him but I don't feed kibble so cannot suggest any specific ones. It could be the meat but fat is tasty stuff as well. Dogs can eat cat food but cats cannot eat dog food so he's actually fine. Cat food is much denser in nutrition so he will need a lot less of it or he will get fat.

Sounds like eating is boring. Have you tried playing with it? Take his dinner bowl and use bits of the kibble as rewards for training. I up the interest a thousand fold by rewarding with a bit rolled away from the dog to make it more exciting. For example tell him 'sit'. As soon as butt hits the ground - good dog and roll a bit away from him so he leaps up to chase it down.

Or use a food puzzle. To see if he would like that idea put a couple kibble sized holes into an empty tissue box or dry water bottle, add some kibble, put the box/bottle on the floor and rattle it to get him interested. Pull it away from him to get him to follow rather than shove it towards him. Be excited when a bit comes out so he gets excited and wants to pounce and eat it. If that gets him excited then buy a food puzzle. I've bought many and all were hard to fill and clean. Nowadays there is the kong wobbler that unscrews so it's easy to fill and clean out. Probably lots more but I wish I had a need for that wobbler! The DIY ones I suggested cannot be left with the dog and are probably single use as well.

I could feed about half a meal as training treats without upsetting my dogs but they easily ate whole meals from various food puzzles. Once done with training I'd put the bowl down for dog to finish.

Good luck, this is very frustrating!
 
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