How To Feed A Picky Eater
While every dog is differentin appearance, in weight, in personality, and quirkswe think of all dogs as having one thing in common: a love for food. However, a good, consistently hearty appetite is not universal.
Some dogs inhale everything you put in front of them. But for owners of picky eaters, mealtime can be extremely frustrating to deal with. And its likely not much fun for the eater either, which is why its important to take the time to find a solution. Picky eating isnt always a major cause for concern, but mealtime should be one of the best bits of a dogs day. And at its worst, picky eating can be a sign of an underlying medical issue or environmental stressor. So, lets examine the potential causes of food-related fussiness, and what you can do to help.
Is picky eating a sign of a serious issue?
There are many factors that can contribute to a lack of enthusiasm around mealtime, but picky eating can be a sign of a significant health problem, so contact your veterinarian if this is a new or worsening behavior for your dog, or its associated with other symptoms.
There are some conditions that can give your dog the appearance of pickiness, even if they actually do want to eat. Food intolerances can cause dogs discomfort for hours after eating, and may lead to hesitant eating or digestive problems such as gas, vomiting, and diarrhea. Similar symptoms can be seen with food allergies, although excessive scratching due to chronic itchiness is more common.
Victor Elite Canine Dry Dog Food For Large Breeds
This food by Victor contains 25% protein, 70% of which comes from premium quality chicken and fish, 17% from gluten-free grains, and 13% from plants and veggies. The recipe is super tasty and specifically designed to meet the nutritional needs of large dogs.
It contains natural sources of glucosamine and chondroitin for healthy joints and is fortified with essential vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, and amino acids. It also contains Victors unique, clinically tested VPRO Blend of ingredients that promote superior digestion, immune system function, and healthy skin and coat. The food is available in 5lb, 40lb, and 50lb bags and reviews cannot rate the product highly enough.
Did You Make This Recipe
How much to feed: I recommend feeding about 1/2 cup of food for every 20-25 pounds of body weight. This is just a guideline. Some dogs, like working dogs and very active breeds, will need more calories than this. Lazier pets and senior dogs may not need as many.
How to store: You can store the leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-5 days or freeze them and theyll keep for up to 3 months. Keep in mind that this recipe includes no preservatives, so it won’t last nearly as long as commercial dog food.
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Faqs About Dog Food For Picky Eaters
Every month we ask many questions from our readers, specifically about feeding picky eaters. Fortunately, we have our own experiences with picky eaters, so we thought we would preemptively answer some of the most popular questions we get from some of the regular visitors here on the site. Lets jump in.
Nutro Ultra Dry Dog Food
Nutro Ultra Adult is one of 10 dry recipes included in our review of the Nutro Ultra product line.
- First 5 ingredients: Chicken, chicken meal, whole brown rice, brewers rice, rice bran
- Type: Grain-inclusive
- Other recipes: Beef, duck, lamb, fish, small breed, large breed, puppy, senior and more
- Price: $$
This Nutro formula derives most of its meat protein from chicken and chicken meal. Our dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 28% protein, 16% fat and 49% estimated carbs which creates a fat-to-protein ratio of about 56%.
Available in a wide range of flavor and recipe options. One of our top value picks.
Sample buyer reviewI have 5 dogsranging in different sizes and breeds. This is the ONE food I can get them all to eat without having to buy a bunch of different brands or formulas. Thank you Nutro!
This Go! Carnivore formula derives the majority of its animal protein from chicken, turkey and salmon meals, as well both chicken and turkey. Our dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 38% protein, 18% fat and 36% estimated carbs resulting in a fat-to-protein ratio of about 47%.
Free of GMO ingredients and loaded with meat. A rare find. Highly recommended.
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Is Your Dog A Picky Eater
Before we jump to tips and tricks on how to feed a finicky eater, lets quickly talk about which dogs are even considered to be picky eaters.
Descended from grey wolves, who are opportunistic hunters, dogs normally eat whatever they can get. At least most dogs do. However, some pups, typically spoiled with tasty human foods and snacks, can become quite picky when its time to eat their normal dog food. What does this tell us? That most fussy eaters are not fussy by nature theyre trained to be highly picky with their food. And really, who would want to eat plain old kibble when theres an abundance of yummy table scraps available?!
That being said, some dog breeds are simply pickier with their food by nature. Typically, these are small breeds like Maltese, Yorkshire Terrier, Poodle, Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, and others. But even certain medium and large breeds such as Greyhound and Eurasier are not immune to pickiness. Of course, even a Labrador, who is normally highly food motivated, can become fussy with their diet if theyre fed table scraps on a daily basis. In other words, any dog breed can indeed become finicky with their food, even though theyre not particularly fussy by nature.
Other Alternative Options Of Fresh Dog Foods:
The Farmers Dog
Picking out the best-tasting dog foods for picky eaters can be a royal pain in the *bleep* sometimes. So, if Ollies Human-Grade Dog Food doesnt work out for your pooch, you can try The Farmers Dog products. The Farmers Dog also offers fresh dog food with human-grade ingredients to promote health and wellness to every dog they can cater to. They offer a service that delivers your customized dog foods right at your doorstep, so purchasing is much more convenient for pet owners!
Their human-grade ingredients are tested on humans that attest to The Farmers Dogs high safety standards along with their human-friendly packaging. Delight your dogs with vet-designed meal recipes, which are prepared and pre-made based on the profile you customized for your pooch.
They offer 3 fresh dog food recipes, namely Turkey, Beef, and Pork.
Try The Farmers Dog customized recipes now and get 50% off of your first purchase! Redeem Here.
Another excellent option for pet owners with a picky dog is Nom Noms fresh human-grade pet foods. Nothing could go wrong with your dogs appetite with all their four recipes vet-approved and nutrients valued based on the profiles established by AAFCO Food Nutrient Profiles.
Their four recipes include Beef Mash, Chicken Recipe Cuisine, Pork Potluck, and Turkey Fare, all made from fresh meat, fruits, and vegetables. They also offer a variety pack that samples all four recipes so you can test which recipe your smooch agrees on most.
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Crave Protein From Chicken Grain
- Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Chicken, 2. Chicken Meal, 3. Chickpeas, 4. Split Peas, 5. Pork Meal
- Caloric content : 3,696 kcal
- Analysis: Protein 34%, Fat 17%, Fiber 3.5%, Moisture 10%
Aptly named, Crave is formulated to increase your dogs cravings but healthily. It is a simple chicken first recipe that is high in animal-based proteins, just like the canines have historically preferred. The real meat from farm-raised chicken is what makes it so delicious and tempting. With the right amount of chicken and pork meal in the mix, you dont even need any artificial additives and taste enhancers. It is the kind of tastes your dog naturally craves. And it offers a completely balanced meal every time.
Savor Shredded Blend Beef And Rice Formulaby Purina Pro Plan
Weve seen dehydrated meat turned mushy and kibbles tumbled on crushed meat, to name only a few, just to tempt picky canines back to eat. Purina Pro Plan has a unique take it combines crunchy bites with soft beefy chunks and its been a feast for a lot of these finicky dogs. More importantly, Savor Shredded Beef and Rice Formula is not only about taste and texture , but its also highly nutritious.
It provides your dog with adequate levels of protein for muscle-building and growth, energy to engage in high-quality life, probiotics to ensure proper digestion, and antioxidants and essential fatty acids to strengthen the immune system. Purina Pro Plan Savor Shredded Blend Beef and Rice Formula Dry Dog Food is not only amazingly high on picky dogs list, but its also amazingly easy on the budget.
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Fromms Four Star Lamb And Lentil
Fromms Four Star is not really a known brand, however, they do have quality ingredients for your pups. They have many different flavors that are popular among typically picky eaters. Including the Lamb and Lentil formula. It is also grain, poultry, and potato free so you dont have to worry about the useless fillers and allergen meats that your dogs stomach may hate.
Packed with viable prebiotics and probiotics, and an optimum omega fatty acid ratio makes for healthy balanced nutrition meant to stimulate a healthy gut. It is even packed with amazing fruits and vegetables to give your dog the best-balanced meal they are less likely to turn their nose up at.
How Can I Tell If My Dog Is A Picky Eater Or There’s Something Wrong With Their Health
Often times, though, the majority of people should be able to tell whether they just have a picky eater at home because of the personality/behavior issues, or whether they have a dog that need medical attention because something’s wrong with their health.
To do this, you have to do some backtracking and see whether this behavior is something new or whether they have always been like this. So, ask yourself some of the following questions to find out which is which with your pooch.
Do they have a history of making it very hard for you to get them to eat their food? Or did getting them to eat their food used to be a very easy task that suddenly changed?
Did you recently change anything that has to do with the food you get for them to eat that may have warranted this difficulty in getting them to eat their food? Did you change the formula, the recipe, the brand of dog food, etc ..
It’s this sudden change in behavior and sudden refusal to eat their food while all else variables have remained the same that you, as a pet owner, should be worried about and should ideally be getting your dog medically checked on to make sure that there’s nothing wrong with their health that’s causing this change.
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Tasty Dry Dog Food: Faq
Do dogs get bored of their food?
Just like humans, dogs can get bored of their food if they are eating the same thing every day. Sometimes it can appear that your dog is being fussy when they are actually just bored. Try to vary their food by buying different flavors of kibble every other month, changing up their protein sources, and adding different vegetables. You can try varying the texture by adding water, too. Its important that dogs dont get bored as it can cause distress and result in destructive behaviors.
How do I get my dog to try something new?
If your dog wont try something new, try mixing it with something he likes. If he still wont eat it, chances are, he just doesnt like the smell of it. Or, if theres a particular brand of food he likes, try buying another flavor from that brand, or if theres a particular flavor he likes, try a similar flavor from another brand.
How much should I feed my dog?
Those are the best tasting dry foods for dogs. Remember that food is fuel but its meant to be enjoyed too! Try out one of our recommendations and remember to change it up every once in a while to keep it interesting.
Reasons Why Your Dog Is Picky About Food
Your dog may have many preferences regarding food. Sometimes its enough to just try until you find the right food for him. In some cases, however, there may be other reasons behind this issue. There may even be a health issue in the background. Lets see possible explanations for why your dog isnt eating.
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Nutro Wholesome Essentials Small Breed Adult Chicken
Nutro Small Breed Adult Chicken is one of 23 dry recipes included in our review of the Nutro Wholesome Essentials product line.
- First 5 ingredients: Chicken, chicken meal, split peas, brewers rice, whole brown rice
- Type: Grain-inclusive
- Design: Maintenance
- Best for:Small breed adults
- Price: $
This Nutro Wholesome Essentials formula derives the lions share of its meat protein from fresh chicken and chicken meal. Our dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 27% protein, 17% fat and 49% estimated carbs resulting in a fat-to-protein ratio of about 63%.
A complete and balanced dog food designed to provide optimal nutrition for smaller dogs. Highly recommended.
Sample buyer reviewI like BBQ chicken and sweet potatoes and so do my dogs. Okay so maybe this isnt barbecue chicken flavor but its still chicken. My min pin and my chiweenie both love home cooked sweet potatoes so Im glad that there are sweet potatoes in this dog food. And with all Nutro products this food shines up their coat and decreases shedding and is made with top-quality ingredients. I feel good about feeding Nutro to my dogs.
Prairie Recipe Natural Dry Foodby Nature’s Variety Prairie
- Unavailable on Chewy
Chicken is a good source of highly-digestible protein and its the key ingredient in this Prairie Recipe from Natures Variety. It also contains chicken fats, chicken meal, turkey meal, whole-grain brown rice, barley, oats, prebiotics, probiotics, and natural sources of essential fatty acids, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. Supplemental vitamins and minerals were added to attain the perfect balance of nutrients that dogs need.
Aside from its holistic label, which dogs dont really care for by the way, Prairie Recipe Natural Dry Dog Food by Nature’s Variety gets the paws up because of its freeze-dried raw coating. The raw coating is the same feature used in Instinct recipes, also of Natures Variety. As to size, Prairies kibbles are about half of Instincts size. The smallness of the bites makes it perfect for feeding puppies until they become adults and seniors.
Also, the availability of other recipes makes it possible to switch flavors without causing tummy upsets and nutritional disruptions. Pricewise, its not a cheap dog food but definitely one that wont break the bank.
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Top 5 Picks For Best Food For Picky Eater Dogs In 2021
|Dog Food for Picky Eaters||Our Rating|
Is There A Health Issue
Changes in your dogs eating habits can be a sign of an underlying health issue.
If your pooch usually dives into their food bowl with gusto but has recently lost all interest then its wise to talk to a vet.
The key thing to look for will be any changes in their eating habits.
A common reason for a dog to stop eating can be tooth pain.
Other reasons can include hormone fluctuations and digestive issues.
Once your dog has received the all-clear from the vet youll know if its just finicky eating with no underlying problem.
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