Rhodesian Ridgebacks are not usually fussy eaters.
There are a few occasions where a dog owner has trouble getting a dog to eat their food consistently. This may be a sign of a fussy or picky eater.
As an owner, you might try several types of dog food and even feed your dog human food in desperation.
But don’t! Feeding your dog food for humans is a sure way to ensure that your dog becomes a fussy or picky eater.
Human food has a lot of sugar and salt, which isn’t healthy for your dog but sure is tasty.
Once your dog has eaten food for humans, they will want more and put off eating their own dog food.
Before you decide to try feeding your dog food for humans, take a look at some underlying issues that could cause fussy eating.
Rhodesian Ridgebacks are not typically fussy eaters. So there may be something causing the fussy eating.
Dogs do better on high-quality dog food. The higher quality dog food tends to be a little pricey but is worth it.
Dog food is formulated to provide all the necessary nutrition for your dog. It will keep your dog healthy and save you money on veterinarian bills in the future.
So ditch the cheaper brands of dog food that are chock-full of fillers and go with a dog food brand that has a good reputation for quality ingredients.
Dog food should be tailored to your dog’s age.
Puppies need the extra vitamins that are included in puppy food for the first year of their life before transitioning to adult dog food.
It’s best to get your veterinarian’s recommendation for the best dog food suited for your dog.
If your Rhodesian Ridgeback is acting like a fussy eater when you feed him, there could be another reason.
Health Reasons For Fussy Eating
If your dog is exhibiting fussy eating, one of the reasons below could be the cause.
Sometimes buying a dog a reputable brand of dog food isn’t enough when there is an underlying health issue like a sensitive stomach or allergies.
These health issues are easy to treat, and there are many brands of dog food brands that make dog food for dogs with these issues.
Dogs can suffer from several dog food allergies. The most frequent type of allergens for dogs are chicken, meat, wheat, gluten, eggs, and soy.
The most common dog allergy is chicken. There are rare occasions when a dog is allergic to all meat.
Your veterinarian can help you find out if your dog is allergic to a specific ingredient, and a simple fix is switching to new dog food.
Dogs, like humans, can experience gastrointestinal distress. Dogs can suffer from acid reflux, colitis, gastritis, constipation, and bloat.
Most of these health issues are treated by adjusting the type of dog food or medication. Bloat is a more serious problem that can be deadly if not treated immediately.
If your dog is hesitant when eating, it may be a sign of a serious health issue that needs medical evaluation.
If your dog stops eating and refuses its food, it is a red flag that your dog needs to go to the veterinarian.
Refusal of food in combination with lethargy and listlessness is serious.
Behavioral Reasons For Fussy Eating
If your dog has been eating his dog food and had no health problems and suddenly starts acting picky, it might be boredom.
Occasionally, dogs get tired of eating the same thing all the time.
Change to a different flavor of dog food but stay with the same brand. Gradually transition to the new flavor to avoid an upset stomach.
If you feed your dog meat, try adding a few dog-friendly veggies like carrots or fruit like apples.
Dice up the fruit and veggie, and don’t forget to remove the apple core.
Food made for humans is tastier than kibble. It is loaded with salt, sugar, and other spices that taste good to your dog.
Once you start feeding your dog table scraps, it may decide it wants human food all the time and refuses to eat its own dog food.
It’s best to avoid feeding your dog table scraps and food for humans unless you are feeding your Rhodesian Ridgeback a raw dog food diet or your veterinarian has suggested chicken and rice for your dog’s sensitive stomach.
Dog Food For Dogs With Allergies
A few years ago, it was hard to find a commercial dog food with limited ingredients.
There are now many brands of dog food that tailor dog food lines for dogs with allergies. These dog foods are known as Limited Ingredient Dog Foods or L.I.D.
Usually, a limited ingredient dog food has one protein, fat, and carbohydrate, but it can also just be a dog food that has fewer ingredients than regular dog kibble.
Dog owners that have dogs with chicken allergies found it hard to find dog food without chicken included in the ingredients in the past. E
ven if the dog food didn’t have chicken as its main source of protein, it often included chicken fat.
But now there is dog food made with fish, bison, or beef as the main source of protein and no chicken fats or chicken by-products.
Vegetarian Dog Food
While it is rare for dogs to be allergic to all kinds of meat, it does happen.
Fortunately, there are several vegetarian and vegan dog foods that use fruits, vegetables, lentils, and brown rice to formulate dog foods for dogs with an allergy to protein.
Grain-Free Dog Food
An allergy to grains is not as common as a chicken allergy in dogs, but it does occur. If your veterinarian has concluded that your dog has a grain allergy.
The veterinarian can advise you on which grain to avoid. It is easier than ever to choose grain-free dog food.
Raw Dog Food
There are dogs that are healthier when on a raw dog food diet.
A raw dog food diet uses raw meat as the main protein. It includes muscles, bones, organ meats, raw eggs, fruits, vegetables, and some dairy in the form of yogurt.
When feeding a dog raw dog food, owners should be careful with the bones.
Bones can splinter and injure a dog. To avoid this, consider grinding up any bones before feeding them to your dog.
Symptoms of A Dog Food Allergy
Before you take your Rhodesian Ridgeback to the veterinarian for a possible dog food allergy, keep an eye on these possible symptoms.
- Upset stomach – A food allergy can cause diarrhea, gas, or vomiting.
- Skin Conditions – Hives will pop up a few hours after eating. The small red bumps are more visible on short hair dogs.
- Swelling – Swelling in the face, such as the eyelids, lips, and even the ear flaps, is a sign of an allergic reaction.
- Itchy Skin – If your dog is scratching or licking an area excessively.
If your veterinarian concludes that your dog has frequent infections in the paws or the ears, your dog could have a food sensitivity.
Don’t be alarmed at some fussy eating behavior.
Sometimes the simplest answer is often correct, and dogs do get bored when eating the same food all the time.