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maebme
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07-11-2006, 11:19 AM

Everything just seems to be a game

Just wanted to sound you out about something Oscar has been doing really since I got him. I am trying to establish a feeding routine i.e. putting his food down at a certain time and removing it after a certain time. However, he tends to grab a few kibbles out of his bowl and run to the lounge or the bottom step of the staircase to consume it, and then come back to his bowl for more and repeats this process. Problem is when he forgets to come back for more and starts to play with something else etc. It means I am taking his bowl up still with half the feed in it.
This is when the trouble starts because he then decides to eat everything and anything in sight - paper. cardboard, things form the garden etc. and when out for walks he pounces on cigarette butts and chewing gum and my stomach turns.
So, should I persevere with taking the bowl away after 30 minutes or so? Or should I relent and leave it down? Oh and I have tried giving rawhide bones etc to chew and more recently a pig's ear now and again but I have notice the pig's ear can give him a runny stool. Opinions and advice please!
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Inca
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07-11-2006, 11:29 AM
at this age most things they do are games to them ....i would feed him in a room where you can close the door ie..the kitchen ...you do the washing up and potter around totally ignoring him he may find that feeding time isn't really as much fun as you are busy
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sammymax
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07-11-2006, 11:38 AM
You could try hand feeding him his meals. I find this extremely useful for a lot of training/bonding. He'll learn that all food comes from you. You can begin gently handling him while he's eating to prevent food guarding later in life. You can do some really basic training eg a sit/down/off etc for handfuls of food (I don't work mine too hard at meal times though). He'll be very focused on you for food making training with treats (if you choose to do that) much easier in future. And, of course, it makes you very interesting to him and he'll eat his food too.
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maebme
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07-11-2006, 02:52 PM
Thank you both so much.
Hi, Inca, part of the problem is that the Kitchen is sort of open plan so no door to shut. That is where I currently feed him.
Hi Sammy, Oscar would eat any amounts from my hand if I let him - the wee rascal - just don't want to encourage it too much in case he ends up only feeding by hand, if you know what I mean. thanks anyway.
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sammymax
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07-11-2006, 04:03 PM
Originally Posted by maebme View Post
Oscar would eat any amounts from my hand if I let him - the wee rascal - just don't want to encourage it too much in case he ends up only feeding by hand, if you know what I mean. thanks anyway.
I really mix meal times up. Sometimes I hand feed Lula, sometimes I make her work for a 1/4 or 1/2 of her food. sometimes just a sit before she gets the bowl in front of her. I even put all her food into a treat ball sometimes so that she has to spend ages "playing" with it to get all her food

With the new dog, the two of us are using some of the food to do some basic training in the same room and then separating them so that they can finish their meals in peace.
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Inca
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07-11-2006, 05:24 PM
prob with hand feeding is they may expect it every meal time ....personally thats not for me

just keep putting his food down and let him get on with it ...as little fuss as possible works better
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maebme
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07-11-2006, 06:11 PM
I am sure you are right Inca as you know fine well how the mind of the cavalier works. Have movd the position of his feedbowl away from the doorway so that hopefully he will be less likely to do this.
Handfeeding is lovely and I can see how it would bond us and in fact probably has, but as has been said I wouldn't want to do it every meal as I have other responsibilities which I cannot ignore. Although maybe if he doesn't take all his feed I could put some of it in a treat ball and make him work for it. But as Inca says , the more fuss I make the more likely he is to play up on that.

Thank you both very much for helping me out - x
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Meg
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08-11-2006, 10:06 AM
hi Maebeme I have forgotten how old Oscar is ?
As Inca says it may be a game or perhaps something scared Oscar while he was eating? You don't really want this to become a habit though .

A couple of things to try for a couple of days ,If you can't confine him in a small area put him on his lead at mealtimes and put just a small amount of food in his bowl and replace it as he eats it, but don't make a fuss or talk to him.
Perhaps he finds the food a bit dull and lacking in smell, grate a little cheese and rub it well in to the kibble, or a sardine so that it has some scent.
I would only give him 20 minutes, not a good idea to leave the food around longer.
Putting some of his food allowance in a treat ball as Sammy suggests is I think great for any dog because it stimulates the mind bu he needs to learn not to play with food in his dish.
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maebme
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10-11-2006, 12:55 PM
Hi Mini,
than k you so much for the advice. Haven't been online much in last couple of days so I missed it till now. Actually the past 2 days have been marginally better. I had moved his feeding bowl and it is now in a little corner which might afford him a little more privacy and he ate most of his morning and midday meals today, so hopefully that will continue. Also I suspect that my elderly mum might just be slipping him the odd biscuit (not the doggy kind), but she easily takes offence so I must tread carefully there.
Mags
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IsoChick
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10-11-2006, 01:53 PM
Hi Maebme

Only just caught this thread, but when Max got fussy and starting throwing his food everywhere, we just shoved it all in a Kong and let him play with it.

He didn't even realise that there were no treats in there, and it was actually his normal food!

HTH
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