Picky eater!
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    Are basenjis usually picky eaters? My basenji, Ninja, refuses to eat. He starts off on a food fine for a few weeks then stops wanting to eat it. I'm not sure if he gets bored easily or what. I've tried adding cooked eggs, cheese, meat, doggy gravy, yogurt, etc but he just eats around his food. I've tried Eukanuba, Blue, and W/D Prescription Diet for his diabetes. Yes, he has Diabetes at 1 yr old and that makes this situation even more tricky. He needs to eat regularly in order for me to inject him with his insulin or else he will go hyperglycemic. And, if he doesn't eat/I don't give him insulin, he can't control his urine and he has a lot of accidents.

    Any advice? Has anyone found a food that their basenji loves?? Please help! I have already consulted my vet and we are out of ideas.

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  • I would say that normally they are not, certainly I have never had one that was picky, except when they are getting old, have bad teeth or other health problems. Perhaps his condition is what is making him picky. You have my sympathy. Hard enough to deal with health issues when your pet is old, but starting at one year of age is heartbreaking. Are you feeding dry food or canned? When my older dogs didn't want to eat, they were far more interested in moist canned food than dry. If he likes the additions you are making, perhaps you can feed him "people food".

    Personally I swear by NRG dehydrated. Never offered it to a dog and had it refused.

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    Right now we are sticking to dry food because I heard dry is better for their teeth… but after all the additives it ends up mostly wet! haha I read somewhere else that going grain-free is the key. Do you see any truth in that? Another owner said to try Wellness because it is grain free and basenjis hate grain. I want to try dehydrated foods like NRG but we are on a budget and it's bit pricey. Thanks for the recommendation. Maybe I'll give it a shot as a last last resort.

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  • I only feed grain free, I don't have picky eaters now, but have in the past… but always had more than one so could use "competition" as a way to get them to eat...

    Try grain free or natural balance that is just meat/potatoes is a good one also. And I also mix with canned food!

    I am hearing more and more Basenjis with Diabetes, can you share his pedigree and/or breeder?

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  • @bumzhabum:

    Right now we are sticking to dry food because I heard dry is better for their teeth

    That's actually a fallacy. IMO, canned food is superior to dry, because it isn't so processed. I like dehydrated because it has minimal processing, and in the case of NRG, requires no pre mix to make it nutritionally complete. Yeah, it's pricey, but I find a little goes a long way.

    I wouldn't say Basenjis hate grain. I fed my first two on Purina, and they did well enough on it. Dogs are scavengers, and for thousands of years got by on whatever human leftovers they could find. Prepared dog food is a relatively recent invention, and they have a vested interest in convincing us we are incapable of feeding our pets. (funny, nobody really tries to prevent us from feeding junk to our children!)

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  • Canned tripe.

    i use the Tripett brand.

    My beloved Digital, the brindlewonderkid, was a very picky eater his entire life. and it got worse when he had nonFanconi kidney failure, but a lot of that was the disease. Zest! the superstar princess, loves food of any sort. It makes training soooo much easier.

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  • I know the reason I feed grain free has nothing to do with advertisements or articles but rather that my dog has (and I've heard of many basenjis) that are intolerant to grain…and regardless of being scavengers all dogs were and will continue to be individuals in what their systems tolerate...

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    I might be anthropomorphic, but I reckon Butu gets 'bored' about 3/4 of the way down a lot of 'good' foods - Orijen, Acana, Symply. He adores Ziwipeak, but it's pricy….but you don't use a lot....(I wouldn't use the scoop, though, I'd weigh it...using the suggested number of scoops he always seemed to be hungry...) At the moment he's doing excellently on Burgess Sensitive, but we're not 3/4 of the way down yet (and it's a UK make, so probably not very helpful...) So yes, I wouldn't call Butu picky, but sometimes it's a job to get enough inside him....

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  • Lol, it's a chore to keep Oakley OUT of his food container, that boy can almost unscrew the seal tight lid…he watches me do it to get an idea of how it's done and often time I wake up to the sound the the container and his greedy little paws on it....drives me nuts! But I will take it over the days he was too skinny and I had to worry about his weight...
    Hopefully Butu will stick with this one!

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    My basenji is definitely picky! He is nearly seven months old, and goes through phases of eating well sometimes, and not so well other times. I have been using premium grain-free kibble, some canned food, and moist frozen raw dog food. He does like the frozen raw food diet, but he only likes the beef recipe. He occasionally eats the kibble, and is picky about what type of canned food he eats. I am still learning what he will eat, but have to purchase the expensive frozen raw food just to keep his weight up. When he plays all day with another dog, then he isn't picky about his food. I am going nuts trying to figure out what he will consistently eat!

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  • @SacGirlInSearchOfBasenji:

    My basenji is definitely picky! He is nearly seven months old, and goes through phases of eating well sometimes, and not so well other times. I have been using premium grain-free kibble, some canned food, and moist frozen raw dog food. He does like the frozen raw food diet, but he only likes the beef recipe. He occasionally eats the kibble, and is picky about what type of canned food he eats. I am still learning what he will eat, but have to purchase the expensive frozen raw food just to keep his weight up. When he plays all day with another dog, then he isn't picky about his food. I am going nuts trying to figure out what he will consistently eat!

    If a dog is otherwise health, they will eat when hungry… not that abnormal for young dogs/bitches to seem to be picky eaters. When you try and "cater" to them makes it even worse (in my opinion). Try giving him is food, if he doesn't clean it up in no more than 20 minutes, then take it away till the next time.... trust me, after a while they will eat!

    Note that I did say "if otherwise health"..... the person that started this thread does have something going on with his/her Basenjis

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    @tanza:

    When you try and "cater" to them makes it even worse (in my opinion).

    I feel like I have definitely fell into that trap! Gizmo also has experienced some separation anxiety, and has been relatively thin. I tried having him focus on his food as I leave, but then he quit eating food until I came home :( So I started feeding the food I know he will eat whether I am home or not, but only give him that food for part of his daily serving. Any additional stress, and I can easily see his ribs. When he got neutered, he was VERY thin…so I catered to him by giving what I know he will eat. He is getting a bit better, as am I, and I hope getting a second dog will improve his eating habits.

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  • @SacGirlInSearchOfBasenji:

    I feel like I have definitely fell into that trap! Gizmo also has experienced some separation anxiety, and has been relatively thin. I tried having him focus on his food as I leave, but then he quit eating food until I came home :( So I started feeding the food I know he will eat whether I am home or not, but only give him that food for part of his daily serving. Any additional stress, and I can easily see his ribs. When he got neutered, he was VERY thin…so I catered to him by giving what I know he will eat. He is getting a bit better, as am I, and I hope getting a second dog will improve his eating habits.

    Trust me… he will NOT starve himself, honest... give him is food, give him 15 minutes to eat, if he doesn't take it away, do not leave it for him all day... makes them even more of a picky eater... competition helps, but not always.. My OJ (my first male that I got from Terri) was thin as a rail for his first 4 years... after that he was a piggy! Important that with a second that you crate them so they can eat separate. Are you going to get your 2nd from Terri? I know she just had a litter of 7 brindles born on Sunday night

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    As a puppy I had Kaiser on Orijen as I was converting our two cats on raw and was new to it and wanted to make sure Kaiser had a complete food as a pup, by the end of his large bag of Orijen he nearly refused to eat his meals and he got sooo fat on it I was glad the bag was gone and we started raw, that was the one and only time he was picky, now he loves his raw and will eat anything edible including poop, cat/duck/rabbit/sheep etc thank goodness not dog poop, dog walks are also snack time so you get very good at scanning ahead but he always seems to find something, if it's solid I have a chance of getting it out of his mouth, if soft no chance. Hope you find a food suitable for your dog not an easy thing when they are special.

    Jolanda and Kaiser

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    @tanza:

    Trust me… he will NOT starve himself, honest... give him is food, give him 15 minutes to eat, if he doesn't take it away, do not leave it for him all day... makes them even more of a picky eater... competition helps, but not always.. My OJ (my first male that I got from Terri) was thin as a rail for his first 4 years... after that he was a piggy! Important that with a second that you crate them so they can eat separate. Are you going to get your 2nd from Terri? I know she just had a litter of 7 brindles born on Sunday night

    First…and most importantly…Yes I will be getting another puppy from Terri :) Her litter is comprised of five boys and two girls, so I am not confident what gender I will get. Now that I have some experience under my belt, I will definitely following the suggested improvements to the feeding strategy. As Gizmo's anxiety decreases, so does mine. I slid a little backwards after he came home from surgery, but will start taking his food bowl away tonight if he doesn't eat within 15 minutes. I am looking forward to frequent visits with Terri and her litter, and will visit them for the first time on the 19th or 20th :)

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    Lucky SacGirl! There are so many gorgeous puppies out there…I have a possibility of a red and white girl...

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  • Oh puppies..!

    I get so jealous this time of year, it's almost torture really. Lol

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  • Super… let me know when you are planning to visit and if I am free, I will come too.... if you are not busy on February 9th, there is going to be lure coursing on Oakley, Ca.... not to real far for you... interested?

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    @QuizBasenji:

    Lucky SacGirl! There are so many gorgeous puppies out there…I have a possibility of a red and white girl...

    Lucky with a hefty dose of CRAZY! :) My first is a red and white male.

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    @tanza:

    Super… let me know when you are planning to visit and if I am free, I will come too.... if you are not busy on February 9th, there is going to be lure coursing on Oakley, Ca.... not to real far for you... interested?

    I will be going to go to Terri's on the 19th, @ 11am. I will let you know about lure coursing.

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  • First Basenji's

    @SacGirlInSearchOfBasenji:

    My basenji is definitely picky! He is nearly seven months old, and goes through phases of eating well sometimes, and not so well other times. I have been using premium grain-free kibble, some canned food, and moist frozen raw dog food. He does like the frozen raw food diet, but he only likes the beef recipe. He occasionally eats the kibble, and is picky about what type of canned food he eats. I am still learning what he will eat, but have to purchase the expensive frozen raw food just to keep his weight up. When he plays all day with another dog, then he isn't picky about his food. I am going nuts trying to figure out what he will consistently eat!

    Hi SacGirl….!
    I just recently (Oct2013) started on raw for my fur babies and in my research, it was stated that you really should not combine raw with kibble because the enzymes it takes in the gut to digest is different for each type of food. It should be all one or the other....has yours every had any form of diarrhea? I hope not! but that may be the reason. I know what you mean about the expense of the frozen raw(Nature's Variety Instinct/beef)-I keep it on hand if their dinners didn't totally thawed in my fridge or if my husband has to feed them.....(he has big yuk factor!!!) Just an FYI!

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