Does your dog enjoy eating your food more than his food? You might be happy to share some table scraps with your furry friend, but that habit might not be too good for his health over time.
Keep in mind that if your dog has no appetite, he is probably sick and needs some attention from his veterinarian. If your dog is not sick, he can and should stick to eating dog food.
It’s time to learn how to get your dog to eat dog food again!
1. Stop giving table scraps to your dog
Your dog is so cute when he is begging for table scraps, isn’t he? It’s hard to resist giving him some human food to eat, but too many table scraps could make your dog more likely to become obese. Dogs that eat much human food might also become very picky eaters.
Even though it will not make your dog happy, stop giving him table scraps so he will have no other choice but to pay attention to his food bowl. You should also limit the number of dog treats you give him, as too many treats could spoil his appetite.
2. Buy a different type of quality dog food
If you don’t give your dog a lot of table scraps, he might not want to eat his food simply because it tastes bad. Try a different type of dog food to see if his behaviour changes.
Above all, the food you buy should be quality dog food formulated with all the nutrients your dog needs, whether a pup, an adult or a senior dog. Real meat should be one of the first ingredients on the label, so perhaps you would like to raw dog food. Also, you should avoid preservatives, artificial flavours and colours, and fillers such as corn, wheat or soy.
3. Give your dog a different flavour of dog food
It’s not a good idea to change your dog’s diet too often. But there should be nothing wrong with giving him a different flavour of dog food from time to time.
If your dog is always eating the same chicken-flavoured dog food, try serving him food prepared with beef, fish, turkey, duck, lamb, or pork to make his meals more exciting.
4. Add some flavour and texture to his food bowl
Another simple way to get your dog to eat dog food again is to add some flavour and texture to his food bowl.
Omega-3, for example, can be used to moisten kibbles and add some flavour to them. It’s also beneficial to your dog’s health. You can moisten your dog’s food with homemade bone broth or natural peanut butter.
Add blueberries, apples, carrots, beans, and bell peppers to his food bowl for some extra crunch.
5. Make sure your dog gets plenty of exercise
It’s normal for a dog not to feel very hungry if he doesn’t get any exercise during the day. Take your dog on regular walks, play with him, and he will be more likely to be interested in the dog food you put in his bowl.
If you don’t have enough time to play with your dog each day, you could get him a toy that dispenses food. He will then need to work on his kibbles, and he will have some fun in the process!
6. Move your dog’s food bowl to a different location
Perhaps your dog loves the taste of his dog food, but he is simply too stressed or too distracted to be able to enjoy it. Be sure to place your dog’s food bowl in a quiet room where he will be able to eat in peace.
Additionally, it could be a good idea to fill your dog’s food bowl and to let him eat before you start preparing your meal. If you eat before your dog does, he will be even more tempted to beg for scraps.
7. Don’t give too much attention to your dog when he refuses to eat
Dogs love attention, so your dog might enjoy the attention he gets when he refuses to eat his food.
Don’t pay attention to your dog after giving him his food bowl to solve this little problem. You can start interacting with him again when he has eaten, encouraging better eating habits.
8. Don’t let your dog’s food bowl sit there all day
Finally, remove it if your dog hasn’t touched his food bowl for 30 minutes. This way, he will eventually learn that he has to follow a feeding schedule and that he has to eat while his food is available. His food will be fresher and more delicious if you don’t let it sit there all day long.