4 1/2 Month Old Picking at Food?

For the first week when we brought Bella home she had a very good appetite. However for the past couple days she just picks at her kibble, usually eating less than 1/4 cup in the morning and repeating this process at dinnertime.

I'll pick it up after 15-20 minutes expecting her to eat more at the next meal, but this has gone on for a couple days now. I'm feeding her a mixture of Chicken Soup for the Puppy Lover's Soul and Tast of the Wild. She was being free-fed Pedigree at the breeders.

She is pooping consumerate with the amout of food she is eating and it is solid, so I don't suspect any GI issues. While she's lost a little weight, she is still a very healty weight and looks like she's in perfect condition.

Could this simply be a teething issue? I've also noticed that when she's out playing in the back yard she likes to dig up acorns buried by the squirrels and eat them. I wonder if she's been filling her belly with acorns and just isn't very hungry when dinner time rolls around?

Pretty typical for a 4 1/2 month old to lose interest in eating.. and yes, I would bet that teething has something to do with it. This is the time that you need to encourage good eating habits… and not "cater" to her... Give her the food... and when she doesn't eat it in 15 minutes, take it away... She will eat when she is hungrey... they will not starve themselves provided they are not ill... and certainly doesn't sound like she is ill. I would have to add that I don't think that acorns are that good for her?

And while I never free fed puppies, not unsual for some breeders to do that... however it does not encourage good eating habits.. to me it is the lazy way out... to just throw the food in with them... you never know who is eating what if you are not there watching... but that is just my opinion

Thanks Pat. That's what I suspected but it's nice to hear a concurring opinion. She was a pound or two overweight when I picked her up from the BYB. They had been free feeding the 2 adults and 6 puppies in the backyard. It will probably just take a little more time to break the bad habits.

The acorns don't seem to bother them (other than artificially filling their bellies). Alex used to go out and do the same thing his whole 15+ year life. He was a little more lazy about it though; he wouldn't dig them up. He just waited for them to fall off the tree onto the patio. 😉

Pat is definitely correct and while you may see that she is thinner, she may be growing and just the weight distribution is different now.

I have a four month old, who sometimes picks at her food, and at other times wolfs it down - I agree with the others that when she is hungry, she will eat. If she isn't eating she'll make up for it. I do leave her food down for an hour in the morning and an hour in the afternoon - sometimes she's too distracted running around and playing to eat all at once, but I figure an hour gives her the chance, and if she doesn't eat it in that amount of time, she will eat more next meal. She's doing fine on this routine.

@Craigh:

For the first week when we brought Bella home she had a very good appetite. However for the past couple days she just picks at her kibble, usually eating less than 1/4 cup in the morning and repeating this process at dinnertime.

I'll pick it up after 15-20 minutes expecting her to eat more at the next meal, but this has gone on for a couple days now. I'm feeding her a mixture of Chicken Soup for the Puppy Lover's Soul and Tast of the Wild. She was being free-fed Pedigree at the breeders.

She is pooping consumerate with the amout of food she is eating and it is solid, so I don't suspect any GI issues. While she's lost a little weight, she is still a very healty weight and looks like she's in perfect condition.

Could this simply be a teething issue? I've also noticed that when she's out playing in the back yard she likes to dig up acorns buried by the squirrels and eat them. I wonder if she's been filling her belly with acorns and just isn't very hungry when dinner time rolls around?

How much exercise is your dog getting? The more you exercise her the more calories she should burn, which should cause her to eat more. If you have an issue going on you will clearly notice it if you exercise her more and her appetite does not pick up.

Jason

She cleaned up her bowl in under 5 minutes this evening, then promptly walked to the pantry door indicating she wanted more. Guess it was just a teething issue. She's getting plenty of exercise.

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