Eating question…
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  • J

    I have a question about some weird behavior my dog has been showing lately when eating.

    We have had Tosca since February, and whenever we go to feed her (once in the morning and once at night) she usually digs right in and eats as fast as she can.

    Sometimes, however, she will start by taking just one piece, twirling it around in her mouth for a couple seconds, then she drops it on the floor, either right next to the bowl or sometimes she takes it to the middle of the room. Then she sniffs it for a couple of seconds and finally eats it. She usually does this with 1-2 pieces, then she starts eating like normal. I have never had a problem with her finishing her food, within 5 minutes it is always gone. When she first started doing this I thought she had an upset stomach, but she has been doing it more and more lately, so I wanted to see if anyone else's dogs do this, and see if its normal basenji behavior not. She does it sporadically, for example she did it this morning but not tonight. Her other behaviors (bathroom function, energy, etc) have been normal. Is this anything to worry about? The only other thing I have noticed is that she sometimes doesnt' like rawhide as much as she used to, once in a while she will go nuts with it, but other times she just licks it. I just hope she doesn't have some kind of stomach problem, but I am doubtful of that since she goes to the bathroom normally and still finishes the food within a couple minutes. What do you think? Do any of your dogs eat this way?

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  • Mine don't but it sounds like she is just playing with her food… of course mine eat in crates so they can't carry the food around... And how old again is Tosca?.... if a puppy, she most likely is still teething... and they do strange things when teething.... As far as rawhide, that to me just means that she not that interested in it... but again if teething, it might bother her to chew it especially if she has either a loose tooth or one breaking the gums....

    Either way, I would not worry about it.... and also a good thing she doesn't want as much rawhide... not that great for them anyway

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  • J

    No, she is not a puppy, she is about 4 yrs old. I agree that its not good to have too much rawhide, so we generally only let her have it when we are eating, or need her out of our hair for awhile. I just noticed that usually she loves it, but lately she sometimes hasn't seemed that interested. I am glad you think its not too big of a deal about the eating thing, I suppose as long as the food is being eaten, I shouldn't worry too much, right?

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  • Dash does something similar. He will take bites out of his bowl and put them on the floor before eating them. He occasionally will walk off with them as well. It is not all the time but he also does it with treats he likes you to put it on the floor so he can inspect it before he eats it.

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  • I would not worry, sounds like she is just being a Basenji!

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  • Sahara, my B does this also at times, she makes the biggest mess at her bowl, kibble everywhere, and of course she just has to take some of it to the carpet so Mommy can clean it up after she finishes eating. Most of the time she will finish her food, but there are days that she is just messy. I wouldn't worry, just being a B.

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  • J

    I hope its fine, its just so weird its almost like she is trying to eat it but can't for a couple of seconds, does anyone know why they do this?

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  • Mine does the same thing but she doesn't always empty the bowl…Jojo is 11 yr so this is not a puppy thing...I had a cocker that did this also...I feel they are just playing with their food. I wouldn't worry about it.

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  • Topaz does this with her food sometimes but she's learned that if she doesn't eat quick C3PO will lurk around her crate & finish it off for her is she's not interested LOL :D

    She also does this with treats A LOT and sometimes she misses out b/c if she decides she wants to taste & then drop it on the floor C3PO will come in & lick it up in one big SWOOP :) and then she has to go & ask mom or dad for another treat & try her experiment again LOL :D

    perfectly normal though!

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  • THANK G*D SOMEONE WROTE THIS THREAD!!! I thought it was me! I've read this forum and never saw anyone write about this…another dog we had did the same thing. Nala picks at her food exactly as you described, she also paws at it and dumps a lot out onto the floor too. She then eats from the floor and then the bowl, sometimes bringing it to a rug. She also will NEVER eat what you give her from your hand without dropping it on the floor and sniffing it a bit as if to say, "What's this? Are you trying to poison me?" Then she finally eats it.
    The great thing is that she is NEVER possesive about her food. For that, I am truly thankful!

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  • OMG!!! Corky does something very similar. He takes so much longer than his brother and sister to eat. He takes his food out of his bowl with his front teath very slowly at first. Then, eventually he eat a little faster. It's almost like he is savoring his food. He also has to inspect any treat that he has not had before.

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  • Yes, some males are really funny about that…. inspecting the food first.. My OJ did that for the first 4/5 yrs of his life... I could never hide pills in anything... my girls however... it is "count your fingers" after you offer the treat!!!!

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  • I once had a basenji that would eat her dog food 1 kernal at a time. She would dump her bowl and ponder - finally selecting the few nuggets that met her fancy and leaving the rest. This appeared to be a phase - she did get over it.

    Right now I have a girl (9 years old) who is deciding that some food is not what she wants - I think she's using it to guilt me a bit as she has not gotten as much attention as she thinks she deserves since I'm spending most of my time taking care of my mom. I'm sure she'll get over it but it's frustrating when it happens.

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  • Shadow also used to 'pick' at his food. He started expanding so I cut back the food at each feeding and now he is eating normally and finishes his bowl when the others do.

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