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Our 6 month old pup has been having some digestion issues, and after numerous vet visits and fecal tests coming back negative, the vet and ourselves have come to the conclusion that it has to be his food. He’s has been on Royal Canin puppy food (the German Shepherd breed specific) due to that is what his Breeder has fed him and they offer a puppy guarantee for a year if he remains on the food during that period.

So due to his health issues with the food, we have been searching around and have decided to go with Victor (Wild Salmon and Seeet Potato) due to it was the only tester bag we had gotten that he would eat. But now he is being extremely stubborn, and as we are mixing food to get him off Royal Canin, he will only eat his old food and leave the new food untouched.

The only trick we have tried so far is using coconut oil which somewhat works, but he will still leave some food. Is persistence key? I know he will eat eventually, but I want him to enjoy it! Not eat just because he knows he has to.

Any input is appreciated!
 

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What about maybe ditching the kibble, since he's got a history of GI issues? He might enjoy a balanced commercial raw diet (like Primal or Bravo), a rehydrated diet (like The Honest Kitchen or Sojo's).

The Honest Kitchen can have amazing effects solving GI issues in some dogs. Their Preference base mix + raw meat probably saved my dog. He went from bloody diarrhea to well formed, big poops. Preference may not be best for a growing pup (you can call them and ask), but I'm sure they've got some other options in their line that are labeled "all life stages" and appropriate for pups.

My dog was picky and uninterested in kibble too -- because he knew it was making him sick, due food allergies. I stopped viewing pickiness as a behavior quirk after that experience. He knew the food was the problem and was trying to tell me.
 

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Here are some things my wife and I have tried over the years--mixing in a quality canned food (usually a stew type)-cooked ground chicken or ground turkey--store bought salt free chicken or beef broth and mixing any combination of them together may help and has worked for us over the years. Picky eaters can make a owners life miserable 'cause it stays in the back of your mind--these dogs sense your anxiety as feeding time gets near--I feel that may turn off their appetite to a degree. I also think based on watching my current picky eater--many foods don't smell appealing--many supplements-like vitamins-- do in fact stink IMO. I've found my current picky eater prefers red meat based kibble bison, beef or venison--he eats fish or poultry--but prefers red meat kibble--some dogs can't handle chicken or red meat (allergies and/or loose stools) Anyway Good Luck and hopefully this will be just a small speed bump in life w/your dog.
 

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What about maybe ditching the kibble, since he's got a history of GI issues? He might enjoy a balanced commercial raw diet (like Primal or Bravo), a rehydrated diet (like The Honest Kitchen or Sojo's).

The Honest Kitchen can have amazing effects solving GI issues in some dogs. Their Preference base mix + raw meat probably saved my dog. He went from bloody diarrhea to well formed, big poops. Preference may not be best for a growing pup (you can call them and ask), but I'm sure they've got some other options in their line that are labeled "all life stages" and appropriate for pups.

My dog was picky and uninterested in kibble too -- because he knew it was making him sick, due food allergies. I stopped viewing pickiness as a behavior quirk after that experience. He knew the food was the problem and was trying to tell me.
Never thought that about it being him knowing the food is the problem. We have looked into raw diets, while none were commercial, but feel overwhelmed with the prep that goes into them. Definitely will be taking a look at The Honest Kitchen. Thanks!
 

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Be sure you aren't getting into a dysfunctional thing with your dog. I did with mine. It's over now, he has healthy stools, digs into his meal the minute I put it down and eats his whole meal promptly

I know there was a physical thing going on because he had chronic loose stools, but I also know that my fussing over him and whether he ate and how much and so on went to his head. Half our solution was putting him back on Purina EN which I hate but he loves and it really fixes him, and the other half was putting him in the other room with his food and completely ignoring him. If he did not eat I picked it up and that was that.

I started seeing him in my peripheral vision standing in the doorway watching me to see if I was going to come in there or look at him, and when I didnt, he would go and eat.

I really like Honest Kitchen too, my older dog eats it My younger (the one described above) likes it and I plan to try adding it to his diet in earnest but we have a trial this weekend so not taking any chances till after that. I already had to lose entry fees and leave early last fall because he got such bad diarrhea I had to scratch and take him home. That was the result of my caving to him saying I don't want this and giving him other junk he did want but made him sick. No more!

My vet also said put him on Forti Flora and keep him on it so I did that too, and he has a good couple of months of great appetite, great stools, no problems.
 

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Have you considered adding beef broth or chicken broth to the kibble?
 

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I'm wondering is his intestinal flora is out of balance, and he simply doesn't feel very good. This was exactly why my dog was a picky eater!

What about giving him a quality probiotic (i.e., almost anything other than Purina FortiFlora, that most Veterinarians love to pimp), like either Complete Probiotics For Pets by Mercola ( Pet Probiotics | Probiotics for Dogs & Cats ) or Primal Defense® ULTRA Probiotic ( https://www.gardenoflife.com/content/product/primal-defense-ultra-probiotic-formula/ or http://amzn.to/2BCKNeZ ).

Craig
 

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I'm wondering is his intestinal flora is out of balance, and he simply doesn't feel very good. This was exactly why my dog was a picky eater!

What about giving him a quality probiotic (i.e., almost anything other than Purina FortiFlora, that most Veterinarians love to pimp), like either Complete Probiotics For Pets by Mercola ( Pet Probiotics | Probiotics for Dogs & Cats ) or Primal Defense® ULTRA Probiotic ( https://www.gardenoflife.com/content/product/primal-defense-ultra-probiotic-formula/ or http://amzn.to/2BCKNeZ ).

Craig
Curious you said that because he had actually finished the probiotics our vet had given us yesterday, which was the only meal of his newer food he had seemed excited to eat. We do normally treat with dental sticks that contain probiotics, but who knows what those contain the dog really needs. Will look into it, thanks!
 

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Curious you said that because he had actually finished the probiotics our vet had given us yesterday, which was the only meal of his newer food he had seemed excited to eat. We do normally treat with dental sticks that contain probiotics, but who knows what those contain the dog really needs. Will look into it, thanks!
Be very careful of the dental sticks themselves...they are well known to cause upset stomachs or possibly even a blockage!

"I don’t recommend using these products. There is a risk of choking, and having these products get lodged in the gut. And of course, the other risk is that these products are not nutritionally healthy and contain lots of low-quality ingredients that can trigger allergies and other nutritional ailments. Commercially-made dental bones are not very effective either. These products are a waste of your hard-earned money." Source: Six Ways to Keep Those Pearly Whites White (and Three Ways To Do It Right!) - Dr. Basko

Not only this, but the amount pf probiotics is likely very minimal. I good probiotic will have the CFU (Colony Forming Units) strength in the BILLIONS and not MILLIONS!

:)

Craig
 
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