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FitGirlyGirl 03-08-2011 04:19 PM

Question about feeding a dog
We have recently inherited a 3 year old poodle mix. We also have 3 cats. We put the dog's dry food down, but he won't touch it, he eats theirs instead. Is that ok for him health wise? I can't not leave the dry cat food out because one of the cats is 15 years old and 6 tiny little pounds, so she only eats a tiny bit at a time and eats every 30 minutes or so. What's to be done?

cherrypie 03-08-2011 04:22 PM

tough problem. Maybe put the cats food on a table he can't get to?

and no it isn't ok. Cat food is much higher in protein and is hard on dog's kidneys

Aunty Jam 03-08-2011 04:33 PM

Keep the cats food out of the dogs reach. What did the people who had the dog before you feed him? Put the food in the bowl, leave it there for 15 minutes - 1/2 hour then pick it up if he doesn't eat. At the next meal offer the same bowl of food. Eventually he will learn that if he doesn't take advantage of food while it's offered he doesn't get anything. He will eventually eat so stick with it.

FitGirlyGirl 03-08-2011 04:37 PM

They gave him kibbles -n- bits, which as I understand it is not such a hot choice in the first place. We are learning, we are cat people. :)

ParadiseFalls 03-08-2011 04:52 PM


Originally Posted by cherrypie (Post 3748851)
Maybe put the cats food on a table he can't get to?


Also, what we do for my boyfriend's little dog, who won't eat dry food right away and then my pit bull steals it, is add in a little Iams Savory Sauce (we get it at Target). Then he chows down right away :) Don't know if that would solve your problem because he still might eat the cat food, but maybe it would fill him up so he wouldn't steal it.

cherrypie 03-08-2011 04:57 PM

I've never known a dog who wouldn't try and eat the cat food because of the protein content in it.

beerab 03-08-2011 06:25 PM

Definitely put the cat food higher up - cat food can hurt their organs over time. If there were no difference it'd just be "pet food" and not cat and dog food. Cat food smells more I think that's why dogs go for it.

I think taking away the food would be good to get him to eat it if he refuses, a bit of a hungry tummy will change his habits fast! :)

FitGirlyGirl 03-08-2011 07:51 PM

I guess we are going to buy a card table type thing for the cat food. I don't want the cats eating on our table or counters. Do any of the dog people in here have a recommendation for a brand of food for a small dog? He's 11 pounds. I haven't had a dog for years and when I did my parents were in charge of things like which food to buy. My husband has never had a dog, only cats. She said he eats anything other than "dollar store brand", so I think he will go back to eating dog food once the cat food is out of reach.

digitalrequiem 03-08-2011 08:05 PM

The easiest thing to do would be to buy a good quality dry food and mix in a little bit of wet food to encourage the pup to eat. Since he's used to kibbles n bits, you might need to buy a small bag of that and slowly transition him over to the higher quality food. Suddenly switching his food can cause some pretty nasty gastro problems. I fed my dog Solid Gold brand food for years until developed a weird food allergy and started getting itchy skin. Now I feed him a holistic lamb and brown rice formula and he loves it.

Also, you do need to move the cat food out of his reach. Also make sure you do the same thing to the litter box....

bargoo 03-08-2011 08:06 PM

Continue to give him kibbles-n bits and add a little of the new food to it each day , wean him off the kibbles-n- bits gradually. I also have a poodle mix, I am not his first owner, until I got him he had never eaten dog food of any kind. They were cooking special meals for his highness. When he is hungry enough he will eat the kibble but he prefers freshly cooked chicken. He will tolerate Blue Buffalo , sometimes.

FitGirlyGirl 03-08-2011 09:28 PM

I was not planning a drastic and immediate switch. Though, he has basically done that to himself right now by eating their food instead of his. We found one of our cats on our carport when she was just a little thing and we had no choice but to suddenly give her a food she wasn't used to since we had no idea what she had been eating. The poor thing was sick for weeks, it was awful.

boxen06 03-08-2011 10:00 PM

I do agree with the other posts supporting gradually switching him over, however it sounds like this dog has just been fed whatever has been on sale his whole life. The vast majority of commercially available pet food products are packed with cheap fillers like corn and ingredients imported from China - even so called "all natural" foods like nutro and blue buffalo import some stuff from China and are riddled by recalls.. sorry for the speech, but since he's a small dog you should be able to affordably feed him a quality food. Petsmart recently started stocking Wellness Super 5 Mix brand food, and it is popular with picky eaters in my experience. It's truly a healthy food you can trust! It's not the absolute top of the line but my golden retriever puppy has been thriving on it after some scares with other food brands. Now my cat eats it, (the cat formulas lol), my parents dogs, and my grandmas picky poodle loooves it.

Good luck! Oh, and I feed my cat on her cat tree so its out of reach.

Aunty Jam 03-09-2011 11:54 AM

I agree with the gradual switch, I'm glad you were planning on doing that.

I love the food I have for my dog but it's a Canadian brand and I'm not sure if you can get it down there... it's called Acana, right now we have him on the lamb and apple formula because he has a few allergies. I usually get my food at Pet Planet (you have those... right?). It's a really good store for good quality food. When the whole pet food recall happened the stores up here had not a single product in their stock recalled. They didn't carry any of the brands affected.

I used to feed Precise which is an American brand that is good. But I don't know if it was affected by the recall.

Laffalot 03-09-2011 09:05 PM

:) - That's right........DO NOT let your dog have cat food. It is so bad for them. Put the cat food up where the dog can't get at it. My ShihTzu (he's 8 yrs) gets picky at times. I feed him 2X a day. I put his dish down & leave it there for about 5 min. If he hasn't started eating it I take it up & he doesn't eat until dinner time. Usually he's hungry by then. Some dogs will try to outlast you & go for a couple of days without eating. You just have to out wait them. They will eat unless, of course, they are sick. I read an article that said to teach your dog to eat....put down his regular amount. If he doesn't go for it with a couple of minutes, take it up & nothing until next meal. But the next meal give him only 1/2 of what was offered. If he still doesn't eat, repeat & each time cut the portion in half. He will soon be polishing his dish. It sounds harsh but sure works. I feed my dog a dental dog food that I get from the Vet as little dogs can be bad for bad teeth. It comes in big chunks & he has no problem eating it........scrapes the teeth. I agree you really have to read the ingredients because of so many fillers .....corn, etc...And we also have to watch for pet food that comes from China. Anyway....enjoy your dog! To me they are such a good thing! I couldn't imagine my life without a dog. :wave:

boxen06 03-09-2011 09:53 PM

Yeah Acana is a wonderful food, and so is orijen, (made by same company) my dog didn't like the taste but he thrived on that $75 bag of orijen food I made him finish! Lol. I had to drive waayy across town to get it too. I just like some convenience in my life so I'm happy petsmart finally stocks a decent kibble.

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