Puppy with an insatiable appetite

rjingaJune 17, 2010

I feed him 3 sometimes 4 times a day and he sneaks cat food and hunts for food all the time. When he eats, he inhales it. He never seems satisfied. Is this something that will lessen as he gets older?

He was a stray and was about 4 weeks old when we found him. he was actually pretty healthy looking.

We are feeding him Purina puppy chow and a small bit of moist and meaty mixed in.

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Has he had a fecal exam for parasites especially tapeworms?

    Bookmark   June 18, 2010 at 12:09AM
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Many many dogs that once had to fend for themselves will wolf their food, it is a hard habit to stop without a special bowl ,which they do make to help pups like yours slow down a bit. Also, I suggest you might want to look at getting your pu a higher quality pet food. While what you are feeding your dog is basic, it is kind of like junk food. The trick with this is that the higher quality of food you feed your dog, the less they eat they dont get too fat and they dont poop as much, and if you are lucky they dont visit the vet as much because of problems associated with eating lower quality food. Have the pup checked for worms, they are easy to treat...good luck and kudos for getting a rescue

    Bookmark   June 18, 2010 at 2:18AM
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To slow him down you can also spread his food out on a cookie sheet and add a few rocks that he has to eat around. Just make sure that they are big enough that he can't swallow them.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2010 at 7:01AM
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I dont agree with glaserberl with using any kind of rocks within his food. I agree with the others re:worms

    Bookmark   June 18, 2010 at 7:29AM
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I think he is a normal puppy eating the way most puppies do especially when they have not had enough food early. You definitely should be giving him four meals a day until 6 mos. old. He might look fat enough, but he doesn't think he is! Depriving him of enough food will cause him to act like this right up through adult-hood and can cause obesity. Once you wean him from four meals, feed three times a day until he is fully grown.

He is growing very quickly right now and needs the extra food for energy and growth. Every puppy I have ever owned acts just like yours is acting. Yes, he will outgrow it! He should be wormed but I doubt that is a problem with eating so much even if he has worms.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2010 at 8:15AM
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I will consider better food, it's funny I've had pets all my life and always fed my cats/dogs science diet. then they ALL stopped wanting to eat it for some reason..anyway...

This guy has had a vet visit, fecal test confirmed something or other, so he was dewormed, heart worm tested, treated with the monthly prevention stuff, has had his first round of shots, and at this first visit, we found out he had dermodex mange and now is being dipped weekly at $25 a pop, yada yada...

I think doling out his food a few bits at a time (albeit tedious) could work. He will take food out of my hand very gently, but when he squares off with a food dish, his heels dig in and he's ON IT. Got ugly with a curious cat too. But he's NOT food aggressive when I interact with him. Just didn't want to share with that cat!!!

I do have another question, as now would really be the best time to be giving him a higher quality food, what's the best way to transition him? The first 3 to 4 days he was here were a nightmare, he had violent diarhhea, would hate a repeat of that.

in case your curious, heres a recent pic of the little booger...my DH named him PETE...(I was thinking Rascal or Rosco, but PETE fits him....

Any guesses on what he might be a mix of? so far the opinions are either Bull or Rat Terrier or Jack Russell?

And when we found him

    Bookmark   June 18, 2010 at 8:21AM
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Puppies gobble their food ... it's part of being a puppy. Being a stray for a while makes them anxious about the supply so they tend to overeat.

Have you tried putting down a large bowl of dry kibble so he can eat any time he wants?

I disagree that what you are feeding him is "junk food" ... the "gourmet" brands can't show any research showing that they are any better, just more expensive.

If he's growing, sleek, and his digestion is stable, leave well enough alone with the food. My house-mate raised 3 dogs to extreme old age with a supermarket brand of food, fed ad-lib.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2010 at 9:50AM
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He's very cute! Can't help on what he is. Boy, was he young when you found him. Glad he's got a good home now. Looks fat and sassy in some of those pics, which is typical puppy!

I had a rescue dog that was food aggressive with other anilmals, not me though. We learned to feed him first, away from everyone else. And the cats quickly learned to stay away.

I bought one of those bowls that helps to slow down their eating, and am currently using it with my new dog Rocky, who also gulps his food. It really does slow him down, so he's not inhaling his food so fast.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2010 at 10:20AM
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lazygardens...well, I would not DARE put down a large bowl of food for him, our big dog left behind 1/2 his food in the bowl one day, DH "accidentally" put it back on the food stand, and little PETE helped himself to it, and before I caught him, he had inhaled most of it. His belly was so full he could hardly move, everytime he was picked up, he belched and grunted. He was miserable til mid way through the next day. He has no shut off valve ;)

I did speak to our vet this morning when I dropped him off for his Mitiban spa day, and he said that he thought the puppy chow was fine, described it as a middle of the road brand. He mentioned that Purina pro plan would be good to use also.

I have always wondered about the true validity of what makes the "gourmet" brands better. To be honest, I have read horrible things about ALL kibble and what goes into it. I seriously doubt any of it is truly good. But raw feeding, I'm not sure about either.

dont want to start a controversy on feeding practices here, (yet ;) but I am curious as to what supposedly makes one brand better than an other, since the truth is that NO ONE can be assured of what is really going into these pet foods.

PS: he has gained 3 pounds in the past week or so! I call that growing to be sure. When he started the dips 3 weeks ago he weighed 10. something now he's 13.2!!

    Bookmark   June 18, 2010 at 10:24AM
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That little cutie looks like he's going to be a big dog;
they eat a lot & grow fast.

You might try feeding him smaller amounts more often.

I'd bet he'll eat 8 meals a day if you can manage it.

& big-dog puppies need a less rich/higher carb food so that they don't grow *too* fast.

Over-rapid growth can cause bone problems as the body (if I understand this right) grows faster than the bones can mature to support the weight.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2010 at 11:59AM
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rj - boy is he cute!! Having the runs when changing diet is a problem for lots of puppies even with adult dogs, just go slowly, mix the food 1/3rd new food 2/3rds old food for half a week, half and half for about a week, then gradually take the old food out completely. Resource guarding (being territorial over food) should not be tolerated, correct your pup now at an early age. Put him in a sit stay before being allowed to eat, feed the others first, keep him in a sit stay and stand between hiim and the bowl beofre you let him eat. Use a choke collar to pull hiim away from the food if he gets too aggressive. Ideally you should be able to put your hand in his mouth or his bowl without issue.
PS - to make it eeasier on the vet in time, play with his front paws - touching them often, stick your finger in his ears (not too far down) and lift his lip and check his teeth out regularly - this will make your vets job easier.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2010 at 4:00PM
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"To be honest, I have read horrible things about ALL kibble and what goes into it. I seriously doubt any of it is truly good. But raw feeding, I'm not sure about either. "

See the link - that's a vet's column in a medical blog.

Here is a link that might be useful: Raw Meat and Bone Diets for Dogs: Its Enough to Make You BARF

    Bookmark   June 20, 2010 at 12:20PM
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Thanks for sharing the photos -- he's adorable and it sounds like you are a caring, responsible owner.

If you go to a pet supply store you should be able to find decent kibble for him. Canidae is what we give to one of our dogs with a sensitive stomach, and there are other healthy brands like Innova, Instinct and Evo that you might try.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2010 at 4:17PM
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To get a dog to slow down while eating, put tennis balls in the bowl.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2010 at 9:09AM
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