Puppy Feeding Issues

Two quick questions.

1. I know that I should be feeding my puppy 3-4 times a day but during the week I am at work for the most of the day. She is confined to a Kennel area with a bed, water, toys, and a sod box to use the restroom. She is doing very well there but since I am gone during the day I am not able to feed her in the middle of the day. Her current feeding schedule is 2/3 (just increased from a 1/2 cup) a cup of dry food (Inova) in the morning before I leave for work and 2/3 a cup in the evening when I get home. The problem is that she doesn't always eat it all. She will eat about half and then if I leave it out for a while she will come back to it and eat a little more. Sometimes it helps if I feed her, then take her for her walk and then she comes back to eat some more. How long should I give her to eat it all? I have been told it is not good to let them graze all day but I also want to make sure she is getting enough.

2. What are your thoughts on wet vs. dry food? Should I mix some wet and dry? I've been told that the wet is not as good because of the water content but I have read in this forum that lots of people use it.

Oh, by the way Kenya is 12 1/2 weeks old.

This is, as far as I know, typical with many basenji pups. They go through spurts where they will eat little to nothing. My boy went through it & I posted several times on here how concerned I was that he wasn't eating. He eventually got over it, but not until he was at least 6 months old or so.

Pat [Tanza], & several others suggested the method I ultimately ended up using, which is that you set down the food & only leave it down for 15 minutes or so. If she doesn't eat it or finish it, pick up the bowl after those 15 minutes. A dog will not starve itself unless it is really sick.

I feed a dry food to Dallas. I mix Blue Buffalo lamb & Blue Buffalo chicken together. I only feed once a day, of course Dallas is over a year. I didn't start doing this until he was older since puppies do need to eat mroe frequent.

@c-bus:

Two quick questions.

1. I know that I should be feeding my puppy 3-4 times a day but during the week I am at work for the most of the day. She is confined to a Kennel area with a bed, water, toys, and a sod box to use the restroom. She is doing very well there but since I am gone during the day I am not able to feed her in the middle of the day. Her current feeding schedule is 2/3 (just increased from a 1/2 cup) a cup of dry food (Inova) in the morning before I leave for work and 2/3 a cup in the evening when I get home. The problem is that she doesn't always eat it all. She will eat about half and then if I leave it out for a while she will come back to it and eat a little more. Sometimes it helps if I feed her, then take her for her walk and then she comes back to eat some more. How long should I give her to eat it all? I have been told it is not good to let them graze all day but I also want to make sure she is getting enough.

2. What are your thoughts on wet vs. dry food? Should I mix some wet and dry? I've been told that the wet is not as good because of the water content but I have read in this forum that lots of people use it.

Oh, by the way Kenya is 12 1/2 weeks old.

If she is not eating all of it, you should take it away and decrease the amount until she is eating all of it… and they will go through periods that they eat really well and then they don't. Especially when teething. I work also and by the time they are 12 weeks, 2 meals should be OK... I give mine tops 15minutes to eat, if they don't its gone till the next time. Remember they will NOT starve themselves unless they are really ill.... The way to build good eating habits is that when it is given they eat, if not... it is take away until the next feeding

I usually always mix something in with the dry... small amount of wet or veggies, or an egg... whatever I have around... gets pretty boring to eat dry day after day... IMO

Yep, leave the food down for about 10 minutes and then pick it back up. She will learn that there are specific feeding times and if she's hungry she'll eat. If you're worried about her getting enough, you can try adding a 3rd meal/snack in there. Feed her as soon as you get home, then put the food down again a few hours later before everyone settles down for bedtime. You might have to use trial and error on this one though, it might make it harder for the puppy to "hold it" through the night with a later feeding. But 2x a day is probably fine at this point anyways.

I would never recommend a primarily wet food diet. It's not good for their teeth and it's much more expensive to feed. Also I find it causes gas and bad breath. A little in addition to the dry food is fine, but I only like to use it for mixing in yucky meds or supplements when needed, or as an occasional special treat.

Just be careful you don't create a picky eater. A little variety in the dry kibble or other add ons isn't bad, but if they learn to expect a buffet it can become a pain in the rear later. lol They can really learn to hold out for the good stuff.

Another fun way to get more food into her is to spend lots of time doing little training exercises. Even simple things like name recognition, attention, sits, loose leash walking, etc. Lots of things you can do in the house in tight quarters. Use some of her food as treats/rewards or some other healthy treat. Then she'll at least be eating a few more bites throughout the day. And you'll be getting ahead of the game in the behavior department! 🙂

Thanks for all of the great ideas. I will go to the limited time for feeding and may start to mix in a little wet good as well. I have begun some train with her but was told I have to wait for all of her shots to take her to obedience classes. She has her third set this monday and then the last ones in three weeks. I have almost got her to sit, she does it if she knows I have a treat but struggles if I just come out of the blue and tell her to sit. We're working on it.

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