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Weird eating habits

Discussion in 'Doberman Talk and Discussions' started by Josht87, Sep 12, 2018.

  1. Josht87

    Josht87 Jr Member

    Hi guys,

    My dog Cato is 8 months old now and he has developed a really annoying and inconvenient habit. He will only eat his food if I’m standing right next to him when he eats. If I walk away he will always follow me, and if I lock him in his crate or in another room with the food and leave him there, he won’t eat.


    Is this a normal habit or phase that Dobermans go through... or should I be engaging in some type of training to get him to eat on his own.

    Thanks
     
  2. Doberman Gang

    Doberman Gang Hot Topics Subscriber

    Sounds like some separation issues. We always just put food down for 10-15 minutes, if they don’t eat it gets put up until dinner or the next feeding time. They will learn to eat when it is time. It does help to have a set schedule and get them in a routine. Ours eat at 5:00 am and 5:00 pm most every day.
     
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  3. Josht87

    Josht87 Jr Member

    Great advice! I do have a set feeding schedule for him but I’ve just been standing over him while he eats. I guess I’ll just have to let him go hungry if he doesn’t eat and eventually he’ll learn that he has to eat his food when it’s there or it’ll disappear.

    Thanks for the tip.
     
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  4. jazzies mum

    jazzies mum Member

    Jazz started to do this about the same age. If she realised I was getting ready to do something she wouldn't stay with her food and eat. I just took it away and fed her at her next meal time. It was easy to see she wanted to keep tabs on me more than eat. Now she'll miss meals if her routine is upset, bet won't fade away from a few missed meals.
     
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  5. Josht87

    Josht87 Jr Member

    Hmmm I’m confused, did you find a solution?
     
  6. jazzies mum

    jazzies mum Member

    Well, I didn't worry about it too much. She would catch up in one way or another and was fighting fit in all ways! When I was taking her to doggie daycare I worried a little the first time as she wouldn't eat and it was going to be a full on day for her but no harm done. She was just VERY hungry for her evening meal!

    If your boy is in good health he won't suffer any ill effects from a missed meal or two while he gets the idea of eating without you!
     
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  7. Oh Little Oji

    Oh Little Oji Formerly Tad Hot Topics Subscriber $ Forum Donor $

    Hi. My first thought was he doesn't want to miss out on any fun. This may have developed into a habit. In the crate, he might not feel comfortable enough that you aren't doing something fun without him :rolleyes:

    I agree with the !5 min (or 10 or so) to eat then it gets picked up. At the same time, I would just be in the next room hopefully where he can see you. You're not standing by his side, but you're not setting down the food and grabbing his leash and heading out the door.
     
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  8. Viemarangelrock

    Viemarangelrock $ Premium Subscriber $ Hot Topics Subscriber $ Forum Donor $

    Interesting. The way I see it we train our dogs by doing things repetitively with them, whether we realise we are doing it or not. Break him out of the habit by putting the food down and leave the room. In 15 minutes take the food away (full, half full or empty). Don't feed him again until the next feeding, and do the same. Don't add extra because he missed his last meal. When he finally starts eating, and he will, praise him when you come back to remove his bowl.
    It’s retraining him but it’ll be confusing for him at first but he’ll soon figure it out. He’ll soon be eating independently!!
     
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  9. Josht87

    Josht87 Jr Member

    @Oh Little Oji @Viemarangelrock

    Yeah I agree with both of you!

    I think he’s nervous to miss out on any fun so he wants to keep an eye on me while he’s eating to make sure I’m not doing something he’ll miss out on.

    I’m just going to put his food down for 15 minutes and leave the room, if he doesn’t eat it he’ll go hungry. Eventually he’ll learn he has to eat it in the given time.

    Just don’t want him to lose too much weight during in that process.
     
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  10. Oh Little Oji

    Oh Little Oji Formerly Tad Hot Topics Subscriber $ Forum Donor $

    I totally understand your concern over losing weight! In fact, (confession) with my first Doberman, when we would be staying somewhere away from home he would go off his feed. I do feel a bit bad about it now, but at times I would actually grab some kibble in my hand and put it down his throat like you would a pill you need your dog to swallow. After a few of these, he would often go ahead and start eating. Seems it got him past the sticking point and got his appetite going for that meal.
     
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  11. My2Girls

    My2Girls Notable member

    My Princess is a picky eater so we usually put some kind of topper on her kibble. Unfortunately now she won’t eat unless there is a topper. She’ll pick out the topper (after it’s been mixed in) and just wait. She’s so funny - once she realizes there’s no more topper coming and we’re moving on to a walk she’ll start eating her picked over kibble as I’m putting on my shoes.

    Oh and I’m fully aware that I’ve created this behavior. It is what it is.
     
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  12. Tropicalbri's

    Tropicalbri's $ Premium Subscriber $ Hot Topics Subscriber $ Forum Donor $

    When I fed kibble mine would pull the not eating stunt and a couple times I put toppers on it just to get them to go ahead and eat so we could get on with our daily plans. Finally I called BS and after 10 min if they did not eat it was picked up, placed in a plastic bag and given again for dinner. Did not take them long to realize that when the food goes down they better eat or it will disappear quickly. Now that they are on raw, they lay down awaiting their food and are very happy to devour it. Bogie is a hoover, Bacall takes it slow savoring every bite. :D
     
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  13. Josht87

    Josht87 Jr Member

    I literally did it once and it worked.

    Put his food out earlier and after 10 minutes I took it away.

    Now it’s dinner time and he’s in the other room eating like a champ, nowhere in sight!

    Thank god that wasn’t a long process :D.

    And thanks guys.
     
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  14. Viemarangelrock

    Viemarangelrock $ Premium Subscriber $ Hot Topics Subscriber $ Forum Donor $

    See, that didn’t take him long. Good boy, Cato! :thumbsup:
     
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