Picky eaters are either showing some anxiety or trying to manipulate you round their little paws.
If your dog has been a great eater and suddenly not. Do visit your vet to ensure all is well.
Below are 9 tips to encourage great eating habits.
Create a calm environment
You can do this by shutting doors to the room you are in. Soft classical music playing and the rest of the home quiet.
Take a no fuss approach to meal times
Your will dog mirror your emotions. Be positive. He will eat. It does help if you concentrate on a cuppa and read the paper during the feeding process.
Avert your eyes
Avoiding eye contact, lets your dog know all is well. No dramas. It's a natural canine calming signal. You will hear your dogs nails clip on the floor. That will be a sign they have walked away from the bowl.
Serve at room temperature
Straight from the fridge is too cold for some dogs. Bring food out of fridge 1/2 before feeding and pop some warm water over just before feeding.
Add something extra special
A drizzle of warm Bone Broth is irresistible.
A whisked up egg
Flash fry small patties for:
Opportunist method. Flick cooled flash-fried morsels of Bell and Duke one by one onto floor. Say nothing and avert eye contact. Your dog will relax and eat.
Recall Method. Call you dog a couple of paces and offer a mini patties. Step back and repeat until they are all eaten or your dog stops taking them. No fuss and drop eye contact.
Natural feeding is the ultimate goal
Bowl down, step away and face away. Stay in the room with the doors closed.
Remove bowl immediately when your dog walks away
A dog walking away from a meal is clearly saying he doesn't want it. Be strong and take it away. Feed again at the next mealtime.
No treats between meals
Dogs will hold out for the treats and for you to cave in and give them something else. Be strong and no extras until they have eaten without a fuss.
BONUS - Below is a link to a blog written by Caroline Spencer, our natural canine behaviourist, which goes into a bit more detail on this subject.
Message from Caroline:
"I would recommend looking at the opportunist and recall methods initially, then try to gradually move on to more natural feeding techniques over the course of a few days."