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gvalenti 02-04-2014 09:12 PM

Crying during meals
We adopted a 3.5 YO GSD (male) 2 weeks ago from a shelter. He had previously been adopted into two homes. I'm not sure how long he was adopted out for or how long he'd been in the shelter most recently.

Whenever the family sits down for a meal he paces around the table and cries constantly. He will also nudge and beg for food the whole time. At the shelter he was eating a base of a certain dry dog food that was mixed with all different donated food. We're unable to find the food he was eating at the shelter and we were told to switch him ASAP anyway because it was cheap/crap. We bought him a different food and his BM have been fine. He will avoid eating it for as long as possible, though. he seems to dislike it. I've (probably regrettably) mixed his food with beef/chicken/sweet potato on occasion to get him to eat it.

I don't know if he's crying to just beg and hoping for food or if he's hungry?? He has 1-2 BM/day, but there have been 1-2 days in 2 weeks where he hasn't gone. It seems to me that if he's going he is eating enough, but I'm unsure. Should I try a new brand? any ideas on how to correct his crying/begging behavior? Or should I post that in a different board?

Thanks so much everyone!

Scout's Mama 02-04-2014 09:34 PM

Not sure how much help I can offer except to share our experience. Emma was an adult rescue with MAJOR food related issues (would try to jump up on the counter during meal prep, cry during meals, etc). I crated her or put her outside before and during meals for a good 3-4 months. Now she will lay under the table calmly and quietly for meals - as long as I can keep the toddler from sneaking her food when no one is looking!

Does he generally have noticeable anxiety issues? Many others on here know more than I, but generally in my experience eating issues are health, activity or anxiety related.

Good luck and congrats on your new family member!

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gvalenti 02-04-2014 10:40 PM

Thanks so much for your reply :) other than meal time he doesn't seem to have any anxiety issues. On two occasions he's been mouthy with strangers invading his personal space (hugging from behind and touching his paws) but with us he's a dream. He has never jumped on the table or a counter, but he rushes to get his face into the fridge and goes nuts around the dinner table. =/ poor guy. I just want to make sure he's happy and fed properly.

I'll also add he let's us mess with his food and isn't possessive/agressive in terms of his food or treats.

brembo 02-04-2014 10:44 PM

GSDs are sometimes vocal and will jabber. I personally like dogs with a backbone that are willing to express themselves and are a bit pushy. Put him in a down/stay during the meal and let him lick the plate as reward. That tactic has made mine almost invisible during meals and it's less schmutz I have to clean off my plates. Win-win.

erfunhouse 02-04-2014 10:54 PM

I feed mine at the same time as the family for the most part. Keeps them from begging and let's us eat in peace. In the crate with their bowls and we eat. They come out when clean up is done.

Metro 10/2005-5/2013
Sabo 3/2013-now
Kia 1/2014- now

gvalenti 02-04-2014 11:19 PM

thanks for the replies! So you guys think we're ok with keeping the food we have him on? He usually only eats while we're eating if he figures he's not getting anything from us haha.

brembo 02-04-2014 11:25 PM

What do you feed?

gvalenti 02-04-2014 11:36 PM

Whole Earth Farms grain free recipe

brembo 02-04-2014 11:44 PM

Looks to be a great kibble. Nothing jumps out as bad. If you like to tinker and bang around in the kitchen might have a look into raw/BARF.

I did raw for a long time with a sensitive stomached GSD and had amazing results. He was radiant in his prime and lived a very long time for a mutant-huge GSD.

doggiedad 02-05-2014 12:41 AM

feed my dog 1 cup in the am and 1 cup in the pm.
i top his kibble 95% of the time with all sorts of
healthy things. if your doesn't like what you're
feeding switch brands.

crate your dog at mealtime. take some time out
to teach your dog not to beg.

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