Hello fellow corgi lovers, I know that this subject has been discussed quite a bit and was hoping to get some guidance from folks who have "been there, done that" :)
Stumpy is 7 months old and not excited about meal-time at all, no matter what we do! She was eating purina puppy when we got her from the breeder and after extensive research on these forums(esp the threads on "What do you feed your corgi", dogfoodadvisor/dogfoodanalysis) we transitioned her to Wellness Core grain free puppy formula once we got her. She tolerated this but was never excited about her food or never ate her food on her own until we added treats to it. At 6 months we moved her to Canidae all life stages(we did some searching on the boards and found some had success with this one for picky eaters) and although she seemed to love this at first, after a month she just wouldn't eat or ate very little of this unless we added treats to it just like the wellness.
The thing is, she is super treat-motivated and loves all of the treats we give her(Zuke's mini naturals, Charlie Bears, baby carrots, shredded chicken, home-made organic pumpkin & peanut butter treats). Just doesn't seem to be the vacuum cleaner that most corgis seem to be. She will eat leaves outside and random non-food items on the floor :( but not her food!
We recently started putting salmon oil on her food as a supplement and this caused her to be more interested in eating, but she won't eat unless we put the salmon oil in it. Then she starts eating halfway, she won't finish it until we sprinkle treats on it. I'm fine with continuing to put fish oil on her food since it's good for her but do not want to put treats/yogurt/cottage cheese/canned food or any other additives to get her to eat anymore. Mealtime is starting to make us stressed/worried and I also feel like she is not seeing us as the food provider. So, we have implemented the strict feeding time over the weekend, setting the food down for 30 min then taking it away. Stumpy is at a very healthy weight, already gets fed twice a day at the same times(we always wet her food with warm water so it's easier to eat) and after starting the strict feeding, so far she has only eaten 1/4 of her breakfast yesterday, even less of her food during dinner. Today she didn't eat any of her breakfast at all :'(
I've read great things about wellness/blue buffalo/taste of the wild/orijen but cannot justify the prices(especially since she really didn't like the wellness one in the first place). Are there any great dog foods that have changed your corgi from a picky eater to a vacuum cleaner? As a reference point, we buy Canidae ALS 44lbs for 53.99($1.23/lb) and are looking for something affordable/around this price range but we're open to all suggestions! Or should I just keep up with the strict feeding schedule? Any tips from those that have gone through this? It breaks my heart to see her not love her food. **Sorry for being so verbose, I just don't know what to do...how can you say no to this face?!
Take heart, there is light at the end of the tunnel, it's not that she doesn't like the food. I'm sure you know that pups will eat anything inedible, from slippers, to couches, to toys, to rocks and poop! That's why you need to puppy proof your home. She simply does not need that many nutrients and her body is telling her that. I hope to read an update when you're back on track :-)
@ Anna...I agree. You can also save the $ you would use on the broth to put toward the food:) @ Kim...don't follow the feeding amounts on the bag either as they usually suggest way too much. Mine get a handful 3 times a day which is about 1 1/4th cups. Dog food companies want you to feed more so they sell more. There will be times with a young corgi that you may have to increase the food also. Usually around a year or a little older mine again need a little extra for a few months as they are growing again.
Natalie, I hope Fiona isn't giving you a hard time - hopefully something suggested here works for you!
Oh boy... poop-eating?! I've read that quite a few corgis on here are interested in eating their own poop and esp CAT POOP! I am so thankful Stumpy isn't interested in her poop at all but she gets 1 home-made pumpkin and peanut butter cookie as a treat every day. I've read that giving them a little pumpkin deters them from eating their own poop and it's great for digestion, the recipe I used is here: http://userealbutter.com/2012/04/18/pumpkin-peanut-butter-dog-treat...
Thanks for sharing the recipe, I'm going to try it out this weekend!
Thanks for the pumpkin & peanut butter cookie recipe, Kim! It looks terrific, and I can't wait to try it! :)
I'm happy to say that Fiona is FINALLY eating all her food. The vet was a little concerned she wasn't eating enough and advised me to try yet another food (a 3rd switch)...but I'm happy to say that she seems to really like this one and is now eating all of her food. I also added a smidge more warm water than I had been (1/4 water for 3/4C of food). I don't know if it was the new food, a bit more water - or both - that made the difference. For the moment, I'm just one happy mama that she's eating all her food. I wish you the same for Stumpy! :)
awww...I hope Bogart likes them!! Your cookie cutters are so adorable, I used heart shapes for Stumpy's batch!! :)
I just went through this with Ellie. I wasn't willing to switch her food again because she has a tough time with it, so I decided we're sticking to Wellness unless there's a digestive issue.
This is really a training issue, so I followed all the housebreaking advice, but applied it to food. When I bring out the food, I make a HUGE deal about it. I get so excited about her food that I get her "dancing" for it. She does some tricks, and I feed her pieces as reward. When I set the bowl down finally, she's ready to chow down. If she cleans her bowl, I make a HUGE deal about it. She gets cuddles, kisses, playtime, everything she loves, then a nice, long walk.
She doesn't always clean her bowl, but I figure that's okay as long as she's playful and everything points to good health. The way I see it, some days dogs are hungrier than others, just like humans. I can tell how hungry Ellie is by how frantically she begs for my dinner, so I adjust her evening meal up/down by 1/4th cup accordingly. That way, she's more likely to clear her bowl and more likely to gets TONS of praise for it.
When she doesn't eat all her food, I carefully measure how much is left and give her just the portion she ate at her next meal. It's usually 1/2-3/4 cup that she wants to eat (and less in the morning). I should say that I don't put water on her food anymore. She prefers her meals (and treats) nice and crunchy. She won't touch any food that's soft (unless it's peanut butter off my finger).
@Heather, I'm confused. What's so great about cleaning her bowl, if her natural inclination would be to eat less?
I like your approach of measuring how much is left when she leaves food in the bowl and adjusting her food downwards by that amount, but I would not make daily adjustments, I would stick with the lower amount for at least a week (with a puppy) and only increase as the puppy's growth demands it.
I have seen very few people ask for help because their dogs were too thin and tons of people looking for advice on how to slim dogs down. Some of the high quality foods are quite nutrient dense. A slow growth rate is more desirable and healthy for a puppy's maturing. There is little percentage in getting dogs to eat more than they are naturally inclined to do and a definite downside.
Wow. I'm always doing something wrong, aren't I?
What's great about cleaning her bowl is that she ate at least 1/2 cup of food. We went for a couple days there when she ate just a couple bites, her time ran out, and I had to take the food away. Talk about an unhealthy downside! As for how much she eats on a daily basis, the important thing here is that I'm monitoring her intake. I did mention 1/2-3/4 cups is normal for her each meal. I'm not overfeeding her and her growth process is healthy. She's not interested in food unless I get her interested. There's very little chance she'd ever eat more than 1 cup in a sitting and no chance that I would give her more than that.
Fromm Gold is another good one for picky eaters, it's a premium food but very comparable in price to Canidae. Trix loves it and it uses high quality ingredients. Also, lots of smaller pet shops will happily give you free samples of many types of premium food. It may be worth your time to ask for a few sample bags of some of the foods mentioned in this thread. :) Good luck!