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The Canine Nutritionist

The Truth about Fussy Eaters

by | Dog Nutrition | 0 comments

Ask yourself why your dog is a fussy eater

If your dog is a fussy eater, the first thing you should ask yourself is, why? Take a look at that bowl of food you’ve just placed in front of your best friend. Then ask yourself another question. If what’s in that bowl was placed in front of me twice a day for the entirety of my life, would I eat it? If the answer to that question is no, then you know why your dog has become a picky eater.

Because your dog was not born a fussy eater. A dog instinctively knows it has to eat to survive. So if your dog refuses to eat what you’ve put in front of it, either it is ill or it doesn’t find the food appealing enough to eat. And in the vast majority of cases, it’s going to be the latter!

Okay, on any given day, a dog might decide not to eat. Don’t we all get days like that? The weather has been unseasonally hot. We’ve fallen out with our best friend. We ate too much the previous evening. In the main though, we are creatures of habit. We need to eat, so we eat. Especially if we enjoy our food.

Your dog will eat if the food is appetizing enough

Our dogs are no different to us. So ruling out ill health, your dog will eat if the food in front of it is appealing enough. If it looks and smells appetizing. Because your dog enjoys eating. He or she doesn’t just eat because of a need to survive. Eating is one of life’s great pleasures. For all of us. Your dog included.

So if what your dog is refusing to eat is a bowl of dried dog biscuit, is it any wonder he or she appears to be a fussy eater?

So ask yourself another question. Does that bowl of kibble you’ve just placed in front of your dog, look like real food? No? Well if it doesn’t look like real food to you, why should it look any different to your dog? If you wouldn’t eat it, why should your dog?

In the vast majority of cases, a dog is not a fussy eater. It just doesn’t find the food in front of it terribly appealing. But I will tell you one thing. I have never known a healthy dog turn down a nutritious fresh meal. I’ve never known a raw-fed dog to be a fussy eater. I have never known a dog fed home cooked food to be picky about their food.

The term “fussy eater” only relates to dogs who are fed mass-produced commercial dog food. For most dogs, that means kibble or dried dog biscuit.

Fussy Eater Feeding Guide

A specially formulated feeding guide for any dog considered to be a picky or fussy eater.

The guide explains why your dog is likely to be a fussy eater, and offers a range of dietary options to encourage your best friend to eat and enjoy his or her food.


And quite frankly, I too would be a fussy eater if that’s the best my dog parents could offer me day in, day out for the entirety of my life.

Dogs enjoy variety too

The commercial dog food industry’s potential for spin never ceases to amaze me. They tell you that dogs love to eat the same meal, day in, day out, for the whole of their lives. Nonsense. They tell you that it’s bad to offer your dog variety. Poppycock. And they have the temerity to blame fussy dog syndrome on pet parents who ‘spoil’ their dogs by offering them ‘people food’ on occasion. Balderdash!

“Your dog avoids eating in the hope of getting more exciting food than what’s in the bowl,” states one dog food manufacturer. Well of course it does. Because your dog is an intelligent being. It knows it’s being short-changed when what’s going into its bowl neither looks nor smells like real food.

Your dog is smart. He or she knows that the only goodness in that dog biscuit has been artificially created. He or she knows that what little goodness it offers has been sprayed on. That actually, it’s not proper food at all. That it’s made from by-products, laced with chemicals and held together with sawdust. Yes, sawdust. Read this!

Healthy dogs love their food

Healthy dogs don’t refuse good food. Dogs don’t become fussy eaters out of choice. They’re programmed to eat.

They’re designed to enjoy their food. But they won’t eat it and they won’t enjoy it if they don’t recognise it as food.

And have you noticed how the commercial pet food industry constantly warns you about feeding your dog table scraps? Yet more spin. The industry is absolutely terrified that you and your dog will start to realise just how much better for your dog real food is.

The industry is a deer in the headlights. Millions and millions of pounds of ill-gotten bonuses are on the line if dog parents ever wake up to realise the truth. That what the industry contemptuously calls table scraps (people food to you and I), created every single established breed in the world today. Including the Chihuahua!

And it won’t take a lot. You don’t need to be a dog nutritionist to know that every time there’s a dog food recall, sales of commercial dog food plummet. Every time there’s a TV exposé about the dog health problems caused by commercial dog food, sales nosedive. Dog parents are slowly wisening up to the scandal that is commercial dog food manufacture.

If you won’t eat your dog’s food, why should your dog?

So please, please, don’t be taken in by the lies of the commercial dog food industry. Put yourself in your dog’s paws. Would you eat what your dog is refusing to eat? And if you wouldn’t, why would you be surprised that your dog turns his or her nose up at it?

If your dog does have a health issue such as pancreatitis or EPI, then you have my sympathy. But as a canine nutritionist I can create a diet that would be more appealing for your best friend. The principle is the same for an unhealthy dog as a healthy one. It’s just a matter of placing appetizing food in front of it!

As for me, I would happily eat my dogs’ food. At least I would if I didn’t think I would feel guilty about stealing from them. I do taste it though. I taste every batch just to make sure it’s good enough for them. And on occasion it’s tasted so good, I’ve had another taste. And another. On one memorable occasion, even another. (Well it was salmon and mackerel that day)!

Don’t tell my dogs though. We may be good friends, but friendship only stretches so far!

Gerald Pepin

Gerald Pepin

Canine Nutritionist

Gerald Pepin is a qualified canine nutritionist, writer, speaker and homemade dog food advocate. Gerald believes that good nutrition can improve or cure most canine health problems and that the natural way is always the best way when it comes to healing man's best friend. A life-long lover of German Shepherds, Gerald and his wife The Dog Chef have two GSDs and live in rural Somerset.


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