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Re-homing a dog

(13 Posts)
happydays00 Sat 16-Nov-19 19:34:01

We re-homed our first rescue dog 5 years ago as a companion for our then 6 year old dog, she was a 4 year old Pug who had been kept outside and used as a breeding dog. Sadly we recently had to have her put down as she had bowel cancer.

After having her put down my older dog went into total depression so we decided to re-home another. She is a 4 year old King Charles Cavalier Spaniel that has lived all her life so far with 7 others (her dog siblings, mother, father and grandmother). The story is the owner needed to downsize their property and therefore was looking to re-home them. Since coming to us she has been, understandably, very anxious but is starting to show signs of improvement: she loves her walks, will follow me around and jumps up onto the sofa for cuddles. Generally you can see that she is starting to relax, which is amazing!

However, her eating has been getting progressively worse. Day 1 she was eating small bites of her food, day 2 was very hit and miss, days 3 - 4 I managed to persuade her to eat some cooked chicken but only if she ate out my hand, days 5 and 6 she's barely eaten a thing and will no longer eat out my hand. I've tried the following:
Raw food (she was fed on this previously)
Cooked chicken
Pasta with tuna and cooked carrots (apparently she has enjoyed this previously)
Dog pâté
My husband has just gone to get some reddy brek and weetabix to try these tonight - is there anything else we should be doing / can try? She was underweight when she came to us and it breaks my heart that she won't eat.

The vet has checked her teeth and general well-being and has confirmed there is no obvious reason (other than stress) for the hunger strike.

OP’s posts: |
Sadandwontvoteagain Sat 16-Nov-19 20:26:52

Try wet cat food - it was the only thing we could get one of our dogs to eat.

I know its hard, but she’s a dog - nature will over come her depression and she’ll eat when’s she’s really hungry xx

She’s just missing her family she just needs to become accustomed to being with you x

fastliving Sat 16-Nov-19 23:17:14

My dog loves 'human food' or my cats food way more than her own food. I think it's the novelty and the fact she getting a 'treat'.
Agree with pp it's unlikely she will starve herself and she'll eventually give in.

happydays00 Sun 17-Nov-19 08:23:08

Tried cat food but she won't even look at it. Today will be day 3 of her starving herself. How much longer do you think before she'll give in?!

OP’s posts: |
BiteyShark Sun 17-Nov-19 08:29:24

Have you tried sitting with her but not looking at her for a while? Or other variations like not being in the same room etc.

Sounds odd but my dog went through a period of not eating his food if we looked at him.

Maybe eat a bit of chicken then offer her some. Try cheese or scrambled egg which my dog will eat if he feels 'off'.

Notwiththeseknees Sun 17-Nov-19 08:31:10

Try some cooked mince?

Good luck thanks

PullingMySocksUp Sun 17-Nov-19 08:31:44

Is she drinking?

Moondust001 Sun 17-Nov-19 08:36:59

You know there is no medical reason for this, so you'll need to be laid back. Healthy dogs can, provided they are drinking water, go for seven days without food. And they are past masters at manipulation. My dog can do "I'm starving to death" straight after his meal - provided that what he thinks he might be given is better than what was in his bowl. I'd possibly suggest slightly warming food - some dogs think warmed food is more appetising. When my dogs have not wanted to eat (medical reasons always, but temptation is temptation!) I have had some success with small amounts of cheese, and, believe it or not, "stinky fish" (mackerel, kippers etc).

The other thing I'd suggest is not fussing over it. Don't try to get her to eat. Put food in her bowl, leave it there and get on with things. Making a fuss over her not eating is attention, and attention is love! Don't pick up her bowl, just let it lie. Eating needs to be the normal thing.

If she hasn't eaten by day 6, take her back to the vets.

Curlysurprise Sun 17-Nov-19 08:38:51

My rescue hadn’t eaten for some time when we got her - we could see her skeleton she was so thin. Vet gave me some calming herbal pills and I got an adaptil collar for her and my other dog. ,
I moved her to wet food as well and she recovered very quickly.
Adaptil make tablets these days, and even rescue remedy ( night version with no alcohol) can help.

frillyfarmer Sun 17-Nov-19 09:13:26

Please do not feed the dog cat food - cat food has a much higher fat and protein content than dog food and at best you'll end up with a dog who is shitting through the eye of a needle for days on end.

It's early days, the dog isn't eating because it is anxious and in a new environment. Keep offering the existing food in line with their previous routine and they will settle into it. Don't chop and change their food, this will just make their more anxious in the process of a massive change.

happydays00 Sun 17-Nov-19 16:15:40

Well, just like that she's decided to eat. I suppose nature took over 🤷‍♀️ I went with the "no fuss" approach and just put the same food we give my other dog (dog meat and kibble) in her bowl and she's eaten it (and another 3 bowls).

I have also got an adaptil collar on her so whether it's that working or coincidence, who knows!

Thank you all!!

OP’s posts: |
happydays00 Sat 30-Nov-19 07:03:59

So our rescue is doing amazingly! The eating (or lack thereof) is a distant memory but our latest problem is whenever I leave the room she wees and/or poohs on the floor! Doesn't matter if I'm only gone 5 minutes. What is bizarre is if I leave the house out the front door she doesn't do it, it's only when she sees me go upstairs! Does anyone have any similar experience or advice on how to approach this? I have started to put her outside before I leave the room so she has the opportunity to go for a wee but so far to no avail!

OP’s posts: |
billybagpuss Sat 30-Nov-19 07:13:22

Aw she is an anxious soul, but sounds like she’s doing brilliantly.

Billypup used to wee in excitement when we came home, still does for my dd who moved away for uni and didn’t come back, a wee is seen as a badge of honour. I think the best advice is again, don’t stress it, have a roll of kitchen paper to hand and just make sure she knows it’s ok. Weird how it’s not when you go out, out though.

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