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Naturally nervous dog refusing to eat

(14 Posts)
SparkleRainbow Tue 19-Jul-11 10:58:41

Right I may be an experienced dog owner but this one has me! We have black lab just over a year old, and a choccie lab who is nine. They are the best of friends, sleep together, play together, and have always eaten together. Well trained and well behaved, taught food manners from early age. Last few days though the black lab won't eat, she is not at all unwell. I have always made both dogs sit and give eye contact before food goes down, and they then eat when commanded. This routine has not changed. Normally I have fed them side by side, have tried feeding one ikn the kitchen and one in hall, at smawe time. Black lab won't eat at all. Have tried feeding at different times, with choccie outside in case it is a dominance issue, black lab won't eat. I have sat with her and hand fed her out of the bowl and she did eat most of that, then put a treat in the bowl on top of rfemaining food, and she carefully removed the treat from the bowl and ate it, but didn't touch the remaining food. She is a n ervous dog, eager to please, who likes lots of positive reinforcement, and routines which I always stick to. What do you think.....what is the best way to break this silly behaviour?

BeerTricksPotter Tue 19-Jul-11 18:39:07

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

SparkleRainbow Tue 19-Jul-11 18:46:06

I don't think so, but I guess it is possible. Shje was startled the other day by a house fly landing on her when she was asleep hmm

Lizcat Tue 19-Jul-11 21:31:12

Check inside her mouth having removed lots of sticks from the roofs of labs mouths this is always possible. Other things are cut tongues from having licked a lovely open tin they found, Stick injuries in the mouth from running mouth open on to a sharp stick. Other possibilities are neck pain making bending uncomfortable. A normal good eater lab (there are a few who are not) who stops eating almost certainly should be checked for a medical problem before a behavioural one.

Scuttlebutter Tue 19-Jul-11 22:15:59

As well as the physical causes mentioned, has it been particularly hot with you lately? We find our dogs are very responsive to heat, and go from ravenous wolves in cold weather to fussbuckets when it's warm and humid. Noses are turned up at favourite dishes that would be demolished normally. grin

SparkleRainbow Wed 20-Jul-11 16:54:10

Not been hot here ,as we live in staffordshire, not anywhere exotic. I have checked her mouth out, and it looks fine. My dh had a brainwave that it might be the sound of the metal bowls scrapping on the kitchen as they lick the bowls, and the sound can be quite loud. I fed both dogs last night in the sittingroom and she ate everything up no problem, did the same this orning and all ok. I think she is negatively reacting to the sound. Still seems strange for it to come out of nowhere like that.

Scuttlebutter Wed 20-Jul-11 17:13:36

You mean Staffordshire isn't exotic?
My dreams are crushed..... wink

Could you change to a non metallic bowl?

MotherJack Wed 20-Jul-11 17:17:22

.. or get a rubber mat to put the bowls on?

SparkleRainbow Wed 20-Jul-11 17:24:02

I think I am going to have to do one of those. Until then feeding two dribbling labs on the sitting room carpet will have to do

Sorry, of course staffordshire is exotic, and it is always sunny!!!! hmm

SparkleRainbow Wed 20-Jul-11 17:24:29

Does it seem weird to you for her to be so affected by sound?

MotherJack Wed 20-Jul-11 17:33:00

My old lady is terrified of "sound"... but she was a rescue dog who has had "severe, persistent and untreated ear infections", probably all of her life and her ears are terribly scarred <quote vet>.

Perhaps her ears are sore?? Dunno confused

Scuttlebutter Wed 20-Jul-11 18:16:11

Sorry, I have this wonderful pic in my mind now of two labs causing chaos in a beautiful carpeted sitting room.

One of ours decided to give me a surprise this morning by stashing two chicken wings under a cushion on the sofa, which gave me a bit of a shock when I sat down with a cup of coffe and the paper.

Seriously, though, as it's a new thing (and unrelated to the Staffordshire micro-climatesmile) I'd take her to the vet for a checkup.

BeerTricksPotter Wed 20-Jul-11 18:55:11

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

SparkleRainbow Thu 21-Jul-11 13:51:52

grin at beautifully carpeted sittingroom.....not anymore covered in lab slobber this morning as the choccie wolfed her food!
Lol at sharing your morning coffee with a couple of chicken wings. I found a chew toy in my slipper the other day!

I will take her for a check up, she does seem fine in all other aspects though.

She clearly has very good hearing as she climbed into her bed this morning when I said to dd2 is was time for bed for her nap (dd2's that is not the dogs!)

I think the noise of the metal bowls may well be the cause, she must just be so sensitive to sound.

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