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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Well I have to again thank the forum members here and dogfoodanalysis website for sharing information.

I went to Pet Supermarket, PetCo and PetsMart, asked if they had any free dog food samples, because I am having problems with my min pin being what seems as a picky eater.

Pet Supermarket gave me some Nutro Max puppy. PetCo gave me some DVP Natural Balance Chrunchy Lamb Treats. Neither of which she would even give a second look after the first sniff.

Then I went to my local Oak Feed, asked if they had any dog food samples. Gent in the back showed me a crate barrel and said he had some Solid Gold samples. I went digging through and picked one of each that they had, also found a pack of Natural Balance Lamb Meal & Brown Rice, and a shinny silver baggie of Wysong Maintenance canine diet.

So when I go home I sat with Grace and poured samples of each into her bowl, she was excited. Standing on her hinds as I put each down.

First was the Wysong, she sniffed and nibbled some right away, good sign.

Second was the Solid Gold Wolf King, she sniffed and took a single kibble at a time away from the bowl and ate it as if it was a snack. Another good sign.

Third was the Solid Gold Wolf Cub, she sniffed, was hessitant, but nibbled a few. Nice.

I then tried; Solid Gold Barking at the moon, she only sniffed it twice and walked away. The cat then took her turn and nibbled a few.. Same result with some Merrick Wilderness, the cat enjoyed it.

Next was Solid Gold MMillennia, Solid Gold Hund-N-Flocken, and Natrual Balance Lamb Meal & Brown Rice, of which she faintly sniffed and showed no interest.

So, I went back to the Solid Gold Wolf Pup to see if she still had interest after sampling the others. She sniffed and looked around, snapped at the cat when she also took a sniff. I got a bit concerned, put in 6 bits of Wysong with the Solid Gold Wolf Cub. She took a sniff and started eating up most of the Wysong and a few of the SD Wolf Cub along with them. I then put in some more Wysong and 3 kibbles of the SD Wolf King. She sniffed, but looks like she was satisfied.

Any comments, suggestions greatly appreciated. It looks like I have 3 foods she is willing to eat so far , but futher testing will tell. :wink:

The Wysong doesn't look like it will be as easy to find, as they only had one sample and I didn't see any retail bags displayed.

I'll post a follow up.

Oh, almost forgot, it seems tha she may have had allergic reactions towards the Natural Balance Ultra Premium formula, she started licking her paws and scratching her ears alot during the 3-4 days I tried to feed her some.
 

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If you can, find some samples of Evo, Orijen, Instinct or even Timberwolfs Wild and Natural. Most picky eaters will like at least one of those and if your pup doesn't eat much, each of those are quite nutrient and calorie dense so he won't need to eat as much as most other kibble.

Of course, you can always try raw.
 

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If your dog really likes the Wysong, you can always order it online too (petfooddirect.com) but then they murder you on the shipping. Which shouldnt be too bad since your dog is tiny and doesnt eat a lot. You should also see about trying out Wellness small breed formula (sold at PetCo and Pet Supermarket) and maybe the Blue Buffalo small breed formula sold at Petsmart in addition to the brands LoveNewfies suggested. These bags should be 100% satisfaction guaranteed so you should be able to just keep your receipt and if your dog refuses to eat it, you can return it for a full refund. Good luck!
 

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You can try writing to any companies (e-mailing) and ask if they will mail you a small free sample. Many will be willing to do that for you - some will ignore you. Worth a try!
 

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Well at least she was smart enough to avoid the Nutro Max. I'd say pick a GOOD brand that she likes and offer her that one and that one only. No treats, no snacks, no nothing in between meals, no added anything to the kibble. She's trained you that if she holds out, she'll get something better because you'll feel sorry for her. After she gets used to the fact that you aren't trained anymore and that's what she's getting, THEN you can start trying to add a little variety and maybe get a good food rotation going. But certainly not until she's used to eating the food you offer her.
 

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I did the same thing as you. I went to a premium food pet store and stocked up on LOTS of samples. They say try them all and then buy one. Well, since one of my dogs was already a picky eater, I didn't want to make her worse than she already was therefore I only wanted to try one sample at a time. If they didn't eat the first sample I was going to wait two to three weeks to try the next sample. As it turns out they both liked the first one I tried and I've been on it ever since. That one was Innova Evo. Sometimes my picky eater doesn't eat it so I then add water and she thinks she is getting something different and then starts eating again. Be careful w/it if you ever use it as one of my dogs has already gained a lot of weight. Now, I'm more careful w/how much they both get. Good Luck!
 
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Picky eaters are created, not born. It looks like you have created a doosey. She has trained you very well. :smile:
I agree 100%. Dogs are clever. Some dogs have got their owners wrapped around their paws. They would not get any choices in the wild. It was eat this or starve.
 

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Be careful w/it if you ever use it as one of my dogs has already gained a lot of weight. Now, I'm more careful w/how much they both get. Good Luck!
Yes you definitely can't treat Evo like every other kibble, it has 40 - 50% protein and around 22% fat which means that your dog doesn't have to eat nearly as much of it to get what they need out of it, which is a good thing, actually.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Picky eaters are created, not born. It looks like you have created a doosey. She has trained you very well. :smile:
Would have been a fine observation on your part, if I had gotten her and worked her up this way, then it would hold true.

I got her only recently, she is the size where I would estimate her being almost a year. She came with a 10 lb bag of Beneful of which she eats happily. When introduced to my home and cat, she also ate the cats food.

It was when I started reading up on the breed, I found this site as well as dogfoodanalysis and decided to switch her to something "better".

Of the 3 foods I tried, nutro max, natural balance and merrick wilderness. I realized she didn't like them, BUT she still eats Beneful and Cat food..

So "training" me hadn't, hasn't had time to happen.. That is when I went for samples to see what she would like instead or going thru bags of what she doesn't like..

Anyways, I found out she also doesn't like to be watched while eating. she rather wait.

I have also tried several snacks and been given some by other dog owners to see if she likes them. She will turn her nose at all of them so far.

I never got to follow up.. But before I went to return the bag of Merrick, I got myself some Taco Bell (we care more about our pets then our own nutrition) and left one in it's foil in the bag on top of the kitchen table.

You guess'd it, she was able to get up to the table and had herself a feast on it, not leaving any trace :)

Since this post, I have left her mixed of each of the samples in her bowl. She eats them all when left alone and no one sneaks up on her while she's eating. Except for Nutro Max Puppy, Natural Balance Lamb & Brown Ride and Solid Gold MMmellenium.

The cat will eat the Nutro Max Puppy out of what she leaves in the bowl.

Which basically breaks down to Solid Gold Wolf King & Cub and Wysong.

I also tried to gravy the same mix plus Merrick Wilderness, she ate some of it, but after it was cold a mushy.

She seems very nervous, even when out for a walk, so I'm working on that..

I just can't figure what she must have gone thru previously.
 

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Good grief! Pick a food that is healthy and in your price range, ONE FOOD, put it down in the morning for 20 minutes, if she eats great if not, pick it up and repeat this again in the evening, continue doing this until she eats. No healthy animal will starve itself and where it may take 2-3 days I promise you she WILL eat and once she realizes nothing else is coming along she will eat just fine.

Yes dogs prefer the crap (Beneful) to the healthy they taste better because they have a bunch of flavorings added to them. Kind of like McDonald's tastes better than veggies, steak and rice, however no human should be living off of McDonald's for 3 meals a day, well neither should dogs regardless of which one they prefer. And I've yet to meet a dog that wouldn't eat the cat food if given a chance, so put the cat food up to where doggie can't get to it and problem solved (I have 2 cats and 2 dogs, I'm speaking from experience here).

Stop catering to doggie, stop humanizing doggie, doggie won't starve if she doesn't eat for a day or two. She is playing you. As another poster said, choose one food to feed for a couple of months, no treats, no nothing else until doggie has a better eating schedule going on and then you can add in some treats or adding a little bit of canned food or switching to a different brand for another couple of months or whatever. But seriously stop stressing over food, for one you're going to make the dog's complex worse by confusing the heck outta her, second you're going to make yourself nuts by bounding around town trying to find something you believe she likes. She's a DOG, put the food down and she'll eat when she's hungry and realizes that nothing else is coming around the bend.
 

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I'm glad to hear your dog picked a good brand and is eating it. Unfortunately I just talked to some people who have a rather plump corgi mix who had been eating Science diet but they switched to Blue to try it out. The dog liked the Blue at first then decided she missed her corn (or something like that) and apparently wouldn't eat the food anymore. Of course the owners panicked and bought the first bag of SD they could get their hands on swearing up and down "She just doesn't like the food anymore, she just doesn't like it!" Very well trained, those people are (not saying you are clockcycle, just giving an example of trained people).

At some point your if dog tries to feign pickiness because she misses the sugary delight that is Beneful garbage, but just keep offering the food at designated meal times and she should come around again.

When my older dog refused to eat her whole tilapia one morning after she'd eaten one just fine the week before, I didn't fuss and give her something else instead. I let the other dog eat it and she went without for the day. You can bet by the next meal she was more than willing to eat what I gave her!

Anyway, good luck with the food and be sure to keep up posted!
 

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Discussion Starter #14
My current concerns;

She didn't really eat more than a few kibbles for 3 days, more or less last week. Since I didn't want to feed her Beneful. I would just leave her bowl down for an hour at breakfast, then take it away and not put it down again until I got home from work later each evening. She has finally started eating, what I would say normally this weekend.

She has gotten really skinny, a lot less bulky, muscular..

She is almost always is sleepy, wanting to snuggle up, lay in her cage, the bed or her blanket on the couch. She isn't as active as the first week. I dare say looks like she is depressed.

She enjoys going for her walks and gets excited.

I noticed she now has a lighter shade of skin/hair around her eyes and where she tears too..

I am hoping this will all work it self out once she gets into a routine. It may have been all the holiday hustle and bustle.
 

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And the new adjustments, new household, new people, new food. Did you make sure to mix it with her old food for a week or two to transition her? The new food could be too rich for what she's used to so she's not feeling good. Try doing boiled chicken and brown rice for a couple of days, then start slowly adding kibble to that and weaning her off of the chicken and brown rice.
 

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Also you need to stop stressing over her, your stressful energy will make her nervous as well.
 

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I agree with BoxerMommie....dogs definatley will pick up on your stress. I doubt she's depressed, she's just confused and maybe tired from the extra activity.

The lighter fur around the eyes (where she tears) is actually a good thing. That dark tearing is caused by food colorings in food - not really a good thing. You're probably just seeing the true color of her fur there now.

Hang in there. She'll be fine.....I hope you will be too! :smile:
 

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Discussion Starter #18 (Edited)
As an answer to the "acclamation" when switching between foods; yes I am mixing 4 tablespoons of Beneful with each food I tried, except when I tested the different samples of Solid Gold/Wysong/Natural Balance, then I only gave her 3-4 kibbles of each to try.

In I would say the 2 weeks of finding the appropriate food for her, her stools varied in color but were all firm. With Nutro Max she pooped twice as much. With Natural Balance she pooped less but more girthy(ouch). With the Solid Gold mix she pooped normally and didn't seem to have trouble getting it out.

She walks as she poops..

Yesterday my wife tells me she pooped one firm with slime on the outside and the rest mushy during the morning (the dog not her). Later that evening she was on the bed laying on her throw, then she walked away. I went to look for her and she was on her comforter on the leather love seat, but I smelled poop. Looked around, she had a mishap and diarrhea over the back top of the love seat.

I didn't scold her. Cleaned it up and let her be. Later I hear her yelp and scratch at the balcony sliding glass door. So I took her out for a walk, as soon as she hit the grass, she let it go, until she yelped in a slight pain.

We walked some more and she seemed fine.

Again on the throw. Getting ready for bed myself, I laid down some newspaper in the kitchen, left some water. Put down a carpet and baby blanket for her to lay on. I do my business and come back to check on her. She had diarrhea the carpet and newspaper. Small droplets randomly on the floor, some looked like bloody water drippings. Took her for another walk and she squirted up another storm.

This morning she seemed fine, made sure her bowl had fresh water and mixed up 4 Tbls Beneful + 2 Tbls Blue Buffalo. She didn't eat.

This may be attributed to the Blue Buffalo chemistry / mix, but I did also catch her eat something while we were on her walk the night before the second I looked away. Tried to get it out of her mouth but it was too late, no idea what it was..
 

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Honestly I think you're switching around to WAY too many different kibbles way too quickly. I would put the poor thing on a chicken and rice (and nothing else) bland diet for a week or so and then SLOWLY add in and replace with the Blue Buffalo (or whatever kibble you're going to stick with for awhile). When I say slowly the switch should happen over a 1-2 week period in very gradual increments. In the mean time you could add a little bit of 100% canned pumpkin (not the pie filling) to the chicken and rice or some psyllium (Metamucil) to help firm up the stools and give her some relief. Once you've made the switch back to kibble if she goes back to having the runs you know it's the food, if not then stick with whatever you've chosen for 3-5 months to give her system a rest.

good luck.
 
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Discussion Starter #20 (Edited)
Honestly I think you're switching around to WAY too many different kibbles way too quickly. I would put the poor thing on a chicken and rice (and nothing else) bland diet for a week or so and then SLOWLY add in and replace with the Blue Buffalo (or whatever kibble you're going to stick with for awhile). When I say slowly the switch should happen over a 1-2 week period in very gradual increments. In the mean time you could add a little bit of 100% canned pumpkin (not the pie filling) to the chicken and rice or some psyllium (Metamucil) to help firm up the stools and give her some relief. Once you've made the switch back to kibble if she goes back to having the runs you know it's the food, if not then stick with whatever you've chosen for 3-5 months to give her system a rest.

good luck.
It's just weird to think she can get into the trash and eat it all up and nothing affect her. But when we transition them with "high quality" foods they get upset stomach.

What all this makes me think is, what ingredients are in the foods/snacks that my dog doesn't show any interest in. What ingredients are in Nutro Max, Natural Balance and Solid Gold that won't cause an upset stomach, but Blue Buffalo will. Also interesting to note, is it's the food she will also eat..

I will follow your advice and nurse her. She deserves it, she has been very understanding and well behaved considering she has a crazy parent like me.. lol :biggrin:
 
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