Springer Refusing most meals

by Catherine

I have a 6 1/2 month old english springer. She appears healthy and full of energy. The problem is her sudden decrease in dietary intake. I changed the diet as I thought she was just bored with it but she still has refused. I have paused training as I don't want to give her treats and her bowl is removed within twenty minutes of serving. She will eat approx. one cup at the end of the day but thats it. Any suggestions

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Dec 23, 2015
Eating problem solved NEW
by: Anonymous

I have finally solved the problem about my 61/2 month springer not eating. Tried everything and nothing worked until my pet store owner suggested raw. I was very much against it but over the next month decided to at least give it a try. She now waits for her mean and eats with gusto! Haven't had a problem since.

Jun 02, 2014
Spaniel not food motivated NEW
by: Mandwah

My spaniel has never been food mad. When I brought her home at 9 weeks she refused to eat for a few days even though it was what the breeder was using, and he was a lovely genuine, working dog breeder in a lovely environment. In the end I was getting a bit desperate and took her to the vets who said she was fine. Vet suggested I feed her little slivers of cooked chicken so she didn't lose weight and she got the hang of it eventually. She still always takes some biscuits and chews every mouthful and refuses titbits of things you prob shouldn't give a dig but tend to share like crisps, but she won't eat bread, cake, pizza, apple and various other things. she will always sniff before she eats what you offer her,. Obviously loves cheese, sausages, fish, pheasant, pigeon etc
She will just eat what she wants and leaves the rest till later. I tried the taking the bowl up thing for nearly a week but in the end I just left it down as the Lab rarely eats it once she's had hers as she's not very foody either, which is fairly unusual !
I've been through every brand of complete dog food as she wasn't very keen on the dry food with chicken oil (which is most brands). I have to get hypoallergenic duck and rice which has vegetable fat instead and this suits birth dogs.
I found that if I mix some real food like roast chicken left overs or some fish, even just a desert spoonful the spaniel will eat her food.
There were 2 things with my spaniels non eating that made this a problem. Firstly it was slightly harder for training purposes as she wasn't food motivated and secondly it was difficult to bond with her initially when she was refusing the food. Although generally she's my shadow, she still prefers her own company at times and has mellowed with age but didn't really look to me as a meal giver and provider. It took at least 6 months for a food routine to be established and a year to settle down properly. I just think that as long as there are no underlying health issues like allergies, deficiencies, hormonal problems etc that need to be checked out by a vet and all the blood checks etc then I put it down to just one of their quirks. If anything it's easier that a scavenging, food mad dog and easier to control their weight too ! They are all different but hope the experience with my spaniel helps a bit.

May 09, 2013
Food as Treats NEW
by: Sasha

I wouldn't suggest that you pause training, perhaps you could use her food as training treats. I know a few people in my dog school that have dogs that don't really eat very well so they use a meal when training. For their dogs atleats being fed pellets from hand while working makes the food more enticing. It is good that you take the food away when she doesn't finish it. But how many meals a day is she getting? Try breaking it down into smaller meals more regularly, perhaps smaller amounts will encourage her to finish her food in one sitting. Also when and where is she being fed? Is her food put down while people are busy around her or eating at the table or playing in the garden, perhaps there is too much else going on around her that is more exciting than eating. Try putting her in a quiet room by herself or if she doesn't eat alone sit with her and praise her when she does eat something out her bowl. My dog went through a phase of not eating but after a week of only finishing one meal a day ( I fed him four times a day) or less he quickly realised he needed to eat when I fed him or go hungry. Also check to see she isn't supplementing her diet with small creatures or garbage from somewhere its amazing sometimes how resourcefull these guys can be.
If this continues though and she starts to loose weight and energy it would be time to see the vet as she could have a problem in her mouth that is making her unwilling to eat like a cavity, or sore jaw.

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