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Sheltie Eating Issue. Contantly Refusing to Eat!

Discussion in 'BARF, Raw & Natural Diets' started by LeoTheSableSheltie, May 22, 2018.

  1. LeoTheSableSheltie

    LeoTheSableSheltie Forums Novice

    May 22, 2018
    Hello Everyone. I have 7 month old male sheltie named Leo. I got him when he was 8 weeks old from a breeder, where he was fed a kibble diet. At first i followed the breeder and continued on a diet of Advance Puppy growth dry kibble. Leo would refuse to eat more than 2 meals a day, that also half eaten and sometimes not at all, even though puppies are meant to eat 3 or meals a day. I was even giving small meals. So i thought maybe he didn't like the advance kibble so I swithced to Black Hawk Puppy Chicken and Rice kibble. Then he started to eat better than normal and I thought the problem was fixed. Unfortunately it was only for a week or so and then it went back to normal. So there I was again not knowing what to do and vet not having any answers. I talked to a pet shop near me and they recommeded me to try a raw diet. As a last resort I decided to take the plunge and bought raw meats and started him on a barf diet which I make myself following the proper barf ratios. So once again the problem was fixed and he was enjoying his meals. That also only lasted a short time and since then it's been a constant issue. He eats one day, doesn't eat at all another day. He doesn't eat at all about 2-3 days a week on average. I vary the meats in th diet and raw bone is always chicken neck or wing since he doesn't eat any other bone. The organs are liver, kidner and brain. His meals are about 155 grams. He is currently 7.2 kgs. Is this normal behaviour? Any recommendations on what I can do?
  2. Caro

    Caro Moderator

    Jan 14, 2009
    Canberra, Australia
    Firstly, has the vet told you he is too skinny? It is very rare for a dog to starve itself without some underlying health problem. I would only really worry if he was underweight, and frankly that's unusual with a Sheltie.

    Do you know what his height is, measured at the shoulders. I can't tell if he's really underweight without knowing how big or small he is, Sheltie sizes are all over the place as are weights. I have one Sheltie who, at 7 mths was about 4.5kg at and another who was 10kg.

    Did the vet do a stool sample? I'd at least do that to make sure he doesn't a gastric infection.

    How much do you give him? Shelties can run on an oily rag. They were bred by poor farmers who managed to breed a very fuel efficient little dog, so it's rare (esp as a Sheltie gets older) for a Sheltie to need the recommended daily intake. When I feed commercial my dogs get less than half the RDI. Tully, who is now 7.5kg gets 1/8th cup kibble for breakfast and about a cup of cooked dinner (mixed veggies and cooked meat).

    You may also want to limit his ingredients. My male had issues with food as a youngster, it was some years before I discovered he is sensitive to chicken. Which is a bugger because most dog food has chicken in it. I've also had issues with Black Dog, both cat and dog formulas. My dogs can't stomach it and my cats had to stop when they changed the formula.

    However he may just be picky - just like kids get picky so do dogs. And he's an early adolescent. Do you leave the food out for him all the time? Dogs have a better appetite if they are given proper meal times and not grazing. After no more than 10minutes pick the food up - make sure he knows it won't sit around waiting for him. From 6mths you can get away with less meals if he isn't interested. Warm meals are more flavourful than cold meals.

    Oh, and one last thing - what does he get between meals? If he's getting snacks of any kind this could be the issue.
    Last edited: May 23, 2018
    Sharon7 and ghggp like this.
  3. Hanne

    Hanne Forums Enthusiast

    Nov 13, 2014
    Caro have given god advice.
    If health is fine - I would definitely not be worried, everyone does not have the same need for food - it also depends on how much exercise it gets - a Sheltie becomes easy too thick

    When Minnie (big sheltie) was at that age (9kg) did she not get as much food as you mentioned, if she had got it she would have eaten it too :yes:

    At the same time, Leo are pretty smart - "if I do not want to eat my food - then I get something that tastes better and, in addition to that I get a lot of attention " :lol::lol:

    Give smaller portions - leave it at the highest ½ hour - take it away for the next meal (two meals a day) here's kibble the best thing - then you'll probably find out what's right for Leo.

    Maybe Leo thought it's fun to get some of his food (kibble) spread out on the ground / floor.
    Last edited: May 24, 2018
    Sharon7 likes this.
  4. Sharon7

    Sharon7 Premium Member

    Oct 31, 2009
    Southern California
    Sorry no help here - I'm kinda shocked, because all of mine (5 in my lifetime so far) would eat anything until they popped, if I let them, so I have the opposite problem. Caro and Hanne gave great advice, see where he is with height and weight, and he may be OK, but a stool specimen check is a great idea too. Good luck!
    mimiretz likes this.
  5. Piper's mom

    Piper's mom Forums Enthusiast

    Jun 26, 2015
    Winnipeg Mb
    Only advice I can give you (if he's been vet checked and everything is ok) is perhaps he's just a picky eater and is choosing not to eat. When Piper was that age he was also very picky and would graze and pick at his food, refuse treats if he didn't like them etc. At a year I decided enough was enough and I gave him 10 minutes to eat and after that I removed the food (he ate twice/day)...second meal he'd usually finish but if he didn't then after 10 minutes I removed it. It took about a week for him to realize that if he didn't eat then the food would go away and he would quickly eat it all. He's now 3 and eats everything I give him immediately...he never refuses a meal now.
    Hanne likes this.
  6. sable

    sable Premium Member

    Oct 2, 2008
    Just a thought: Try your kibble and buy some baby food (sweet potato or the meats) and place it on top of the food.
    My Lil' Lady can be picky also but she is addicted to salmon and sweet potato. She will also eat the turkey by Wellness.
  7. Stewart Werley

    Stewart Werley Forums Regular

    Feb 27, 2018
    Chewie is just 7 months now, is between 12 and 13 pounds and isn't eating everything all the time either. It's been warm this week, I don't know if that is an issue, but he has plenty of energy, is alert and having lots of fun with playing and running and all of that. The last few days he is eating maybe half his breakfast, maybe less (raw diet) and then in the evening he's eating his whole serving. I haven't gotten worried because he's bright and healthy; I don't think he's being picky, he just isn't eating any more than he needs right now.
  8. Margi

    Margi Forums Enthusiast

    Nov 2, 2012
    Corona, AZ
    Boy what I wouldn't give to be in your shoes! Getting weight off shelties isn't fun or easy. So having a self regulating one would be really nice! Mine would eat till they pop!

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