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Dogs can be picky like humans and may reject the food that you give them. This can become a big problem. If your dog is refusing to eat they may become malnourished which can lead to a myriad of serious health issues.
So you need to make sure that you always feed your dog the best dog food available so they will not only get the nutrition they need but will also enjoy the flavor.
Signs Your Dog Does Not Like Their Food
There are several signs to watch for to see if your dog just simply does not like their food. These signs include:
- Disinterest at feeding time
- Not eating the food in their food bowl
- Spitting the food out
- Excessive begging for people food
- Stealing people food
- Scavenging food
Talk To Your Veterinarian First
If your dog has started to reject their food, it may be a sign of a larger illness. Dogs can reject their food as a result of a range of illnesses. Everything from minor issues like dental disease to larger problems like kidney failure and cancer can cause a dog to lose their appetite. So before you try anything else you need to take your dog to the veterinarian to get a full check up and make sure they aren’t rejecting their food because they are ill.
Other Causes Of Food Rejection
If you’ve had your dog checked out and they have a clean bill of health, there may be some other things causing your dog to reject their food. First, you may be feeding your dog too many treats between meals. Your dog may be rejecting their food because they prefer to eat the treats you offer them. Secondly, the food you may be feeding your dog is stale or expired. Many people buy dog food in bulk in order to save money, but the food may go bad if not stored correctly. Finally, if your dog feels uncomfortable or unsafe, they may reject food. So if you’ve moved recently, are traveling, or introduced a new member to the family, they may feed too nervous to eat. In any of these cases, you need to consider changing your feeding routine rather than your dog food first.
- READ MORE: Why won’t my dog eat?
Change The Routine
There’s a couple ways to change the routine to encourage your dog to eat. First, limit treats so that your dog is only getting their food from their food dish. Then, add an exercise routine before feeding so that they are tired and more eager to eat. Next, make sure you also create a safe environment for your dog to eat. Feed your dog alone in a quiet area so they are not interrupted and can feel confident eating. Finally, do not give in. If your dog doesn’t eat, go for a couple days and make sure they know that the food you give them is their only option. If they still refuse, then it’s time to take some steps to make their food more appealing.
How To Make Their Food More Appealing
There are several simple things you can do to make your dog’s food more appealing to them. First, you can warm the food up which will enhance both the smell and the flavor making it more appealing. Secondly, you can mix in a can of wet food to enhance the flavor and make it more like a treat. You can also try just putting some simple food additives like slices of banana or little pieces of cooked eggs into their food. If you find these techniques do not work or that your dog is just eating around their kibble to get to the additions, then it’s time to consider changing their food to something they will like better.
Change Their Food
If you’ve gone to the veterinarian and changed your feeding routine, and your dog is still rejecting their food, it’s time to their food to something they will like more. Before changing their food, you need to do some research and find the best dog food for picky eaters. Start by reading online reviews and see what kinds of dog foods other picky eaters have enjoyed. You also want to look for something that is nutritionally dense, which will not only make up for the lost nutrients from when your dog was not eating properly, but because nutritionally dense foods tend to have more flavor.
Five Delicious Food Recommendations
There are plenty of great foods on the market that your dog may enjoy. Here is a list of the top five best dog foods that are both very healthy and highly rated for their flavor:
- Taste Of The Wild Pacific Stream Dry Dog Food
- Blue Buffalo Chicken & Brown Rice Adult Dog Food
- Wellness CORE Grain-Free Original Formula Dry Dog Food
- Orijen 6 Fish Grain-Free Formula Dry Dog Food
All of these foods contain high quantities of meat with no fillers and minimal processing, which makes them more appetizing than other dog food brands. They also all have comparable wet food varieties so you can make the transition easier for dogs who have been spoiled by treats.
Making The Transition
Any time you introduce a new food to your dog, you want to do it slowly and transition with your dog’s current food. Make sure to watch your dog for any signs of abnormal behavior or health issues. In the case of a dog who does not like their food, you really need to stay disciplined during the transition. That means no extra treats. You need to make sure your dog knows that the food in their bowl is their only option. You also need to stay very disciplined about feeding time. If they still reject their food, then you need to take it away until next feeding time. Stay strong during the transition and eventually your dog will start eating their new food. However, if you still struggle with finding a food your dog likes consult your veterinarian. They may have some other recommendations for you to explore.