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puppy feeding and training questions

472 Views 6 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  mistymama
Our 4 month old puppy is on Wellness Puppy food, kibble and canned. But he doesn't eat at consistent times -- sometimes skips food altogether until late in the day. Obviously this is making it hard to housetrain him, and he's also started vomiting (just foamy) a couple of times a week because his stomach is so empty. The vet says he looks healthy and is gaining weight, but I'm just trying to figure out how to get him on a regular feeding schedule.

Housetraining is tougher than I thought, and I need some advice. He's a mini-dachshund, so notoriously hard to housetrain, but it's like one minute he gets it, and the next he has no idea. I'm reading "Smart Puppy", too, to help with some of the other issues, especially the mouthing. I've also read "Dachshunds for Dummies", "Everything you need to know about dogs" and a handful of other puppy training books.

We had planned to take him to puppy training class, but just can't swing the $$ right now. Can I train him well without that, or do I really need to just go?
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Have you tried feeding him less when he does eat so that he might be more interested in food the next time you offer it? What else is going on when you offer food? Are you interrupting play? In our family, we've found that right after the people eat is a good time to feed the dog. She's very interested in food because she has just seen us eat (honestly though she's never not interested in food) and having her wait re enforces her status in our pack which makes training easier.

Training classes are a great way to learn how to train a puppy but they are not what get your puppy trained. You need to work with your dog a lot more than just at the classes. If you can learn those skills outside of a classroom, you should be just fine.
We've tried a lot of different things around feeding. We've moved his food bowls to a quieter location, tried feeding him smaller amounts more often, feeding him right after us or at the same time as us, and it doesn't really seem to matter. The only time he really eats well is at his dinnertime, because we mix his dry food with canned (which he completely loves). Can I give him mixed dry/canned for morning and evening?

As far as training goes, I think it's going okay. The older kids and dh are way too into spoiling the dog, but he definitely sees me as the pack leader (or at least the person he should listen to!). With me, he'll consistently do sit, wait, leave it, and come. He also is walking pretty well on the leash with me. When he's mouthy, I stop playing with him and ignore him completely. The kids, OTOH, keep trying to tell him to stop, like "Koda, biting is not okay. Stop biting. OW! Mom, he's biting me!". I keep trying to tell them he is NOT a child, but they seem to not quite figure that out yet
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I wouldn't leave the food out all day - you're right, it makes it much harder to potty train when you have no idea of the ... um, transit time

This is what we've always done. Get up, outside and potty, we eat, puppy gets food down for 15-30 minutes. Whatever is uneaten goes away. Lunchtime same deal. Dinnertime same thing again. The puppy will not starve! It will learn to eat when you give it food.

Also, you said kids and DH are big into spoiling the puppy - are they giving him lots of treats? Treats are super high calorie usually (unless you're my dog and get carrots for treats hehe), so he could just be filling up on those. You could ask everyone to substitute his food for treats. Measure out the amount he is to be fed a day, then only use from that container for treats when training, playing, etc.

When you get a regular eating schedule you get a regular poo/pee schedule and that makes it easier for everyone to housetrain
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I just wanted to add that one reason puppy k is so important is socialization - that is crucial, and the optimum window is up until 14 weeks. So if you choose not to pay for a class, you have to get him out meeting people of every shape, size, color and age, as well as dogs of every shape, size, color and age, not to mention every other animal he might potentially meet in his lifetime - cats, horses, etc. Socialization of a puppy is one key to a good dog.
Hi there! We've got a mini dachshund around the same age, just a few weeks older.

What saved our LIFE with housetraining was getting a dog door. We live in an apartment, but put a dog door going out onto our deck with a potty pad out there. He never has accidents anymore, ever. Most times he can wait until I take him outside, but he's got the patio as an option that is much better than the house!!

As far as eating/tummy issues - we dealt with something similar. I kept him on the kibble the breeder had him on, and OMG, this dog had dirreah a few times a week and threw up a few times as well. Our vet said this breed has one of the most sensitive GI tracts she's ever seen, keep his food very simple.

Well I started researching and decided raw would be best for him. It's been one week now and WOW is all I can say. His huge, runny poos are totally gone (they were actually gone in about a day) and now he does tiny, chalky poos that do not stink - and he goes much less, about once a day vs. 3+ times a day. He has not puked once. He LOVES the food (obviously) so he eats at regular times. I can't say enough good things about raw and what it has already done for him.

Just today I was petting him and noticed how super soft his coat is - I always thought it was soft and shiny, but now it's at a whole new level. I can't believe we've had such great results in just one week - I can't wait to see one month, one year, etc down the road.

Anyway, I know not everyone is into raw, but it's totally helped our mini's digestive system, big time!!
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Oh and I wanted to add that we are not doing puppy classes either. I personally don't think they are necessary as long as you know how to teach your dog the basics - AND you are able to socialize them. I take Beanie all kinds of places - pet store, to pick ds up from school, etc so he has a chance to meet every kind of person possible. And we run into multiple dogs each time we walk him. I know some people will say a puppy class is a must, but in my experience if you socialize and are able to teach the basics you want your puppy to know, you will be just fine without.
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