So I rescued a new dog a few days ago. He’s five years old and an alaskan malamute/german shepard mix. The people at the shelter didn’t know much about his life prior, but he did have issues with his lungs so he’s on doxy100 (a type of antibiotic i think).
In short he isn’t eating very well if at all. I can kinda coax him into eating out of my hand then setting it on the floor. But he has a tendency to run off with his food and eat it out of site. He will not eat out of a bowl at all, even with treats. I don’t know if its an issue because of his medication or choice of food. I tried soft food and a mixture but he puked that up pretty quickly so its a no go on that. Anyone have any advice? I just want the poor boy to feel comfortable and able to eat.
It’s a thing, not eating out of a bowl. Some dogs are like that. Get one of those flat mats example https://www.chewy.com/petrageous-designs-bone-n-up-dinner/dp/55327
Offfer him small meals 3 or 4 times a day, put the food on the mat and do not hover over him.
Add a splash of water to the food and mix in a bit of soft food with the kibble, scrambled egg or canned food.
Do not free feed, leave food down. Pick up after 10 minutes, store in the fridge and offer at the next mealtime. Have fresh water available 24/7
As long as he is drinking water and eating a little, he should be okay.
However, if he does not consume solid food times 72 hours, call the vet.
Give him some time…..
Antibiotics can cause nausea, so work closely with your vet, however doxycycline seems to be one of the better tolerated ones.
thank-you for rescuing a shelter/pound dog, it could be a few reasons why he’s not eating, the antibiotics he’s taking are making him feel unwell, nausea, also having no food in his stomach then taking a tablet with a little treat isnt enough to absorb the tablet then makes him feel sick, only give antibiotic after youn know he has eaten at least 1/2 cup of food that’s if you can find something he likes to eat…
Is he happy, lively, excited etc or does he seem unwell?
I’d ring shelter or your better off going back to the shelter 7-9am in morning & ask the morning carers was he eating his dry kibble? he would have been feed a dry kibble coming from a shelter, the person feeding the dogs of a morning may remember him, if they say yes he was eating his kibble ask which brand was it & it’s the antibiotics making him unwell, how much longer does he have before antibiotics are finished? ask vet can the antibiotics be stopped & see if he starts to feel better, it will take about 1-2 days for him to feel good again…
He may be very depressed & is missing his old life/owner, he needs to gain trust with you & this takes time, he will come good it just takes some time & patience, best to get him in a routine, daily walks same time everyday, meals same time, get a plate or a chopping board not a “bowl” & put food on plate/chopping board in a certain place all the time that’s his special eating spot somewhere quiet & safe & walk away DO not look at him, NO eye contact just call him “Dinner” then walk away…
What I’ve found sometimes these rescue dogs have been feed a raw diet, not kibble/wet canned food, have you tried a raw meaty turkey leg take off the skin & sharp bone that runs along leg bone, run leg under hot water to take off chill off the meat & put in his special eating spot or outside on his chopping board & walk away & try watching him from afar but don’t let him know you’re watching him also egg have you tried whisking a egg, scramble lightly cook or add some boiled sweet potato & some cut up chicken pieces mixed thru… I buy the reduced cooked BBQ chickens from supermarket…
There’s a reason he’s not be eating, try & work it out why, the best place to start would go back to the shelter & ask staff more questions the people who does the feeding & hosing out cages of a morning, there’s always a few favourite dogs, he may have been one of the favorites & one of the carers took a liking to him & got to know him, how long was he at the shelter?
What you are seeing is normal, I am sure the shelter people told you everything they know.
It will take at least a month for a dog that has possibly been abused, neglected or abandoned to start to feel comfortable and begin to trust you.
In the meantime keep his diet simple, a good kibble with something tasty added (as mentioned in my prior post). Add water to the kibble, especially if you don’t observe him drinking. Very important.
Do not stop the antibiotic, unless told to do so by the vet that has prescribed treatment.
I had a dog that would not eat out of a dish, it’s not a big deal.
Stick to a schedule, dogs love routine, mealtimes at the same times as well as walks, etc.
I would not be surprised if this dog exhibits separation anxiety. How does he act when he is left alone?
Keep us updated.
what Bailey S is seeing it’s NOT normal, when some dogs first go into a pound/shelter environment some dogs won’t eat for the first few days that’s why I buy the reduced BBQ chickens to take with me for the new comers, some dogs & cats get really depressed, when I bring home the odd pound dog to stay over the night & wait for their early morning pick up by dog movers to drive them interstate to their new homes, these rescue dogs eat & love their food especially if it’s a cooked meal, they are sooo happy to be out of a noisey cold pound, this dog is unwell or something has happened that involves food, miss treated etc or food makes him sick….
has he been too the toilet & done a poo since you’ve had him? he should of poo out his shelter food, Bailey you said he has vomited, Im just wondering if there’s a blockage just make sure he going poo, I know its hard to poo when he’s not eating much but keep an eye on him normally when they go on walks they do their business.
He would have his pound/shelter notes, I’m wondering how did he do his time while in the pound & is he skinny, under weight & what was wrong with his lungs & has he been tested for heart worm?? he probably was an outside dog being a bigger dog…
He needs to see a vet again, either the vet that put him on the antibiotics, was that the shelter vet or rescue vet that put him on the antibiotics was it for Kennel Cough? once you find what is wrong with his lungs then ask vet can he change his antibiotics or if he’s been on the antibiotics 5 days or more can the antibiotics be stopped if the course is nilly finished he may not need the antibiotics no more especially if he had Kennel Cough & his cough has stopped then once the antibiotics are stopped you might see an improvement if he starts to get his appetite back again like a dog should have, from what you have written I’m wondering if he has an under lying health problem especially vomiting back up wet food or did you mix wet food with dry kibble? some dogs can’t have dry kibble & wet food both together & being X with GSD, GSD are prone to IBD EPI….Check his poos when he goes…
The occasional vomiting may be stress related, often these dogs wolf down their food, eat too fast, as they don’t know when they will eat again.
That is why I suggested 3 or 4 small meals per day instead of 2. After about a month you should be able to go to 2 meals per day, as he calms down and eats slower.
Of course if the vomiting increases, consult your vet.
I would suggest a dome bowl to slow down his eating but he has an aversion to bowls.
Don’t be alarmed if he has hiccups after wolfing down his meal, again, this is stress related and should go away (if it occurs)
Try not to worry, the first month is the hardest. In 6 months you will see a completely different dog. 🙂
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