Do You Have Picky Eaters? Try These Feeding Fidos

Otis here. I want to shed light on a very important topic—picky eaters. My brother is very picky (and has a sensitive tummy). Our pet parents have worked out ways to keep him nourished despite his own best efforts to slim down to his puppy weight.

There are a few ways to get your picky pup interested in eating. In fact, some of these methods mirror what you’d do to feed a picky human-pup.

Chopper & Otis: PLAY Wobble Ball Interactive Dog Toy

Don’t Ruin Dinner

Your dog may be too full for regular dinner. Look at how you feed your pupper and see if you can make any changes to how much you feed your buddy.

First, eliminate table scraps and serve a regular meal that is predictable. Unlike humans, dogs don’t mind having Meatloaf Monday or Taco Tuesday every day of the week. Don’t worry about spicing it up for us— save the variety for treat time.

Speaking of treats, we love them, but they should be given in small quantities. You want your dog to have an appetite at mealtime. Don’t spoil dinner with too many snacks.

Feed the right serving size for your dog’s weight and nutritional needs. Don’t overwhelm your pup with food. You don’t need to fix a plate of food as if it’s buffet time.

Finally, don’t leave out a bowl of food. Remove the food when mealtime is over because your dog doesn’t need to graze all day.

Supper Time Ritual

Just like picky children, pups need structure at mealtime. Try to feed your buddy around the same times each day. It’s better to feed two smaller meals than one large one.

Dogs can get bored, so you can bring a little excitement to feeding. Create a fun ritual that makes mealtime fun. (One of our friends won’t eat until he plays fetch for a couple minutes.).

Inspect the dining area. Make sure suppertime takes place in a quiet, distraction-free environment. A clean food bowl on a fresh placemat makes a world of difference.

Don’t replace food or make it more appetizing when your pet doesn’t want to eat it. You don’t want to become a short-order dog food chef.

Tricks with Treat Toys

The clever or bored doggo needs a little more engagement for the necessary task of eating to be interesting. That’s where treat toys come into play.

Treat toys give your pup the opportunity to solve a puzzle and get a nourishing reward at the end. Select a toy that works well for your dog’s style of play and diet. For example, P.L.A.Y. Wobble Ball and Beco Ball work well with dry or slightly moist kibble. Retreads Turtle, Dino and Hippo are great for wet or dry kibble or a small amount of soft food. Chewy snacks and soft food can be stashed inside the Retreads High Roller Plus.

Chopper likes to carry his treat toys elsewhere to eat in private. I guess you could call him a fan of “take out.”

Chopper & Otis: Cycle Dog Retreat Dino Interactive Dog Toy

If a treat toy does the trick for your canine, be sure to clean it thoroughly between feedings. Use a bottle brush or dedicated toothbrush with some dish soap to get bits of food out of the toy.

Treat toys are also great for the dog who eats too quickly. Adding a fun challenge will slow down eating.

Monitor your dog as you try each method to see what makes meals more appealing. Good luck!

Until next time--

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