English Mastiff refusing to eat

Discussion in 'General Mastiff Discussion' started by sgsmith318, Jul 13, 2017.

  1. sgsmith318

    sgsmith318 Member

    Hi all!

    Our girl has been basically turning up her nose at her food for the last four days on and off, and I'm starting to be alarmed. She acts interested when it's "dinner time" and trots right out to her bowl, but then stands there wagging her tail and looking back over her shoulder at me, like she waiting for "something else".

    She is very picky about her food flavors (she gets Fromm dog food), and she's very smart, and she has done this once before. THAT time, I made the mistake of adding some bacon drippings to her bowl once, when she decided she didn't like a flavor of Fromm. After ONE time of adding a "treat" to the food, she completely refused to eat unless I added bacon grease, so I quit and we had a battle of wills for two days until she got hungry enough to decide to eat what I put in front of her. Needless to say we haven't bought that flavor since...

    NOW she has turned up her nose at another flavor. I refused to "sweeten" it up and I'm super annoyed about it, because I just spent freaking $72.00 on a bag of food that is almost new and she's refusing it. SOOOO I went and bought the one flavor she DOES like, plus a free bag of a new chicken/fromage flavor, which of course she gobbled up, but only that first time. Now, we're back to hunger-strike again. I'm combining the three flavors, in the hopes that she'll finish a bowl and possibly use up the bag of Salmon/Tuna that she's refusing, but she's still refusing to touch it. I mean, flat out refusing. As I write this, she hasn't eaten since yesterday afternoon, and she's laying by her full food bowl in the kitchen, looking pathetic.

    I am going to try giving her a whole bowl of just the new flavor (that she liked) and see if she's just being super picky.

    Other than this, she seems fine, she plays outside and is her usual self. She's 2-1/2 years old and is not around other dogs.

    If all else fails, I'd love any advice on a good alternative food aside from Fromm, because we're getting pretty limited and mixed response to their flavors at this point, not to mention they cost an arm and several legs, ugh. And our little pet food store doesn't always have the stupid Pork and Peas that she loves.

    Sorry to ramble, thanks for any advice.

    And yes, I will call my vet if she doesn't eat the new "favorite" flavor....

    thanks guys!
  2. Nik

    Nik Well-Known Member

    So my Cerberus was a picky eater his whole life. Some foods he just didn't like. Sometimes he would get bored of a food. He didn't like eating the same thing all the time. He also was a social eater. He did not want to eat unless we were there directly beside him. He would refuse to eat if we left the room.

    I did find these pure beef sprinkles though that we could add to the food (it looks like seasoning) and most of the time that would work to get him to eat the food (so long as we stood by his side). He also adored peanut butter so sometimes we would add peanut butter flavored dog treats to his food and that would get him to eat at least a little bit. The sprinkles seemed to work best though.

    Cerberus lived a long life and he was always exactly like that and it was always a struggle to get him to eat and he was always underweight because of it. Otherwise he was overall a very healthy dog. He was just a picky eater.

    In any case it could be that your dog like Cerberus is a dog that gets bored with the same flavor. I mean people get bored eating the same thing night after night so it makes sense a dog might as well. Also check to see if your dog eats better with you by his side. The social aspect could also be another factor here.

    I am not sure if this is the exact product I used with Cerberus (my other two dogs aren't picky at all so we haven't needed it since he passed) but it was something like this and it worked well:

  3. sgsmith318

    sgsmith318 Member

    Ah, thanks! She's always been a picky and slow eater, so we have tried to switch her between the couple of flavors she will eat, so that could be it.

    I *did* just do some minor obedience stuff with her tonight (like, sit, come, bed) as an excuse to give her extra treats. She was very interested in those, and then went straight for her water, so I put some of her new flavor of food out again, just on the floor by her water bowl, like a handful of treats, and she gobbled it right up and took another 2 cups worth, a handful at a time, off the floor. ugh...whatever, princess.

    We'll see how breakfast goes tomorrow. *gives dog a hard side eye*

  4. 7121548

    7121548 Active Member

    I'm actually experiencing the same thing with my dog right now. He's never been picky with food, but lately, he's been refusing any kind of dry food I offer him. I've tried about 4 different foods now, and with each food, he'll eat it the first time, but never again. He'll happily eat any kind of treats or human food though. I realized his decrease in his appetite began when the temperature started getting really hot. Plus, I have been walking him a little less also because of the weather, which means he needs less calories. Could it be the summer weather causing changes in your dog's appetite?
  5. DennasMom

    DennasMom Well-Known Member

    ["ugh... whatever, princess"] LOL!!!
    You have a Princess, I have a Drama Queen. :)

    Denna's raw fed, and basically has never turned down a meal (she loves kibble, too)... we did have a battle over fish recently, though. I had put some meds in her dish that didn't go well (violent rejection... all night long)... and she decided to associate the meds with the fish. It took not feeding the fish for about a month, and then sprinkling the fish with about 1T of Parmesan cheese for a few days for her to finally remember she likes fish again.

    For a 'topper' I use Nupro Silver - which is a supplement, but is probably 90% dried liver powder... so it makes a tasty topper or gravy for anything you mix it with.

    Another possibility - she might be smelling something 'off' in the food, if it's past it's "best by" date or they changed formulas on you... not saying she's not just being picky, but sometimes dogs pick up on stuff like that.

    Our last dog was a self-regulator... he'd skip meals all the time - but he didn't sit there and stare at the food in the dish... he just walked away when he was 'done'.
    Hot days = less appetite
    No exercise = less appetite
    Too much excitement = no interest in food (this happened when boarding with daycare all the time... which the staff there did not like... but they got used to it.)
    One Big meal = might skip the next one (or two)
    I loved how he kept his svelte physique, and never really worried about it, he'd eat a little each day, and more on days we got out for some nice long walks.
  6. Courtney H

    Courtney H Active Member

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