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Q&A: My Dog Is A Fussy Eater - Can I Cook Wellbeing Essentials?

This week we have a question from Maria Sambanis and her sweet dog Tiffany:

I cook my dogs meals and as she is a fussy eater I am concerned that if I sprinkle Wellbeing Essentials on her food she wont eat her meal - so can I actually cook the Wellbeing Essentials product without ruining the vital nutrients & also can I coat her meat/chicken with it & grill it? Thank you.  

This is an excellent question, Maria - and can we just say that Tiffany is totally gorgeous!

Unfortunately, Wellbeing Essentials Complete 22 isn’t suitable for being cooked into food and should not be heated above warm.

The reason for this is because the oils in the nuts and seeds don’t like being exposed to high heats required for cooking. Once we grind up the nuts and seeds, we expose the oils so that your dog’s digestion can utilise them, however this process makes the mixture more fragile to heat. The mixture can be slightly warmed, but definitely at a very low level.

But never fear, there is some good news!

Wellbeing Essentials Complete 22 is specially designed for fussy eaters. It is both nutritious and delicious (to dogs!), and many dogs actually think it is a treat. We’ve paid careful attention to the flavours and textures that will appeal to a dog’s palette, as well as cleverly covering the tastes of ingredients they may not find quite so appetising. 

Introducing new foods to your dog’s diet

If, like Maria, you are feeling unsure about introducing new ingredients in your dog’s food, we would recommend starting slowly.

Begin by adding half the amount that they would normally be given for a dog of their size and weight and see how they go. This will allow them to get used to the mixture, and you can slowly increase it to the required amount once you’re sure they like it.

We think it’s fantastic that any pet parent makes their canine’s meals from scratch, and we hope that Wellbeing Essentials Complete 22 gives you the confidence that your dog will be getting all the nutritional goodness they need. 

We know it can be tricky finding the best dog food for picky eaters, but once you’ve mastered it - we promise it will be worthwhile.

Also, to put your mind at rest, we offer a 100% money back guarantee if you or your pup aren’t a fan of Wellbeing Essentials Complete 22. So, if Tiffany or any other pups don’t take to it, all you need to do is get in touch and we’ll take it from there.

sad beagle looking out of window

Managing the eating habits of a fussy dog

Maria isn’t the first and won’t be the last to manage the eating habits of a picky pup. 

Learning how to deal with a fussy eater dog can be frustrating, and finding foods that your dog enjoys may be challenging at times, but there are always options.

There are several reasons why your dog might be turning their nose up at their food, and as a pet parent it is important to know how to manage this behaviour, spot the signs of an unhappy pup, as well as have a few ideas up their sleeve to get their canine companion happily digging in again.

We are going to take you through some of the ways to manage a fussy four-legged eater and make sure they are getting all the nutrition they need to thrive.

labrador lying down in kitchen

My dog is a picky eater and won’t eat

Just like people, dogs can be particular (read: fussy) about their food, and while dogs are often known for their insatiable appetite and tendency to eat almost anything, many canines will also have foods they either don’t care for or don’t like, full stop.

There are several reasons why your dog may be refusing to eat:

  • They don’t like the flavour or texture - It may simply be that your dog just doesn’t like the flavour or texture of their food. It is not uncommon for dogs to like certain food more than others, and particularly when it comes to pre-made dog foods, it can take a few tries to find the right one.
  • Check the food is not expired - This can happen when you buy food in bulk; it may seem like some foods can last forever, however it can go stale if expired or not sealed properly. Always be sure to check your dog’s food is in date to avoid uneaten dinners and upset tummies.
  • Waiting for treats - If you have a habit of feeding your dog scraps from the table, or perhaps one too many treats, they can develop quite a taste for it, leading them to turn their nose up at their daily meals. Try to keep treats and snacks to a minimum to encourage your dog to eat their proper meals.
  • Anxiety or stress - Fear and stress are some of the most significant factors that can affect your dog’s eating habits. If a dog is anxious or doesn’t feel safe in their surroundings, one of the first things to go will be their love of food. If your dog is presenting nervous behaviours, showing them gentle encouragement and creating a calm environment can help them start eating again.
  • Underlying medical issues - Loss of appetite is often one of the main signs that your pup could be poorly. Things like mouth sores, digestive issues and even doggy dementia in older pups can all contribute to your dog’s lack of interest in food. If your dog stops eating, it is important to rule out more sinister causes, and so always consult your vet if you are at all concerned.

chocolate lab lying down on kitchen floor

What to do if my dog is refusing to eat

While having a dog that won’t touch their food can be worrying, there are things you can do to help your dog get their appetite back:

  • Slowly introduce new foods and flavours - Introducing your dog to new flavours and textures can stimulate their senses and get them excited about food again. Changing your dog’s diet too suddenly can cause stomach upsets, so be sure to take things nice and slow.
  • Gentle encouragement - Sometimes pups just need a little reassurance, and some gentle encouragement and positive affirmation from their person can make them feel calm and comfortable to eat again. Why not try feeding your dog from your hand to show them that food is safe and fun.
  • Little and often - If your dog is refusing food, try not to overwhelm them with large meals. Offering them small and controlled amounts of food throughout the day can be a good way of getting them back into the rhythm of eating. This can gradually be increased and spaced out until your dog falls back into a normal eating pattern.

sad looking dog

Should I be worried if my dog is a fussy eater?

When your dog is off their food, it can be an early warning sign. It can be worrying and frustrating when your dog won’t eat, but it is often because they are trying to tell us something.

Dogs don’t speak our language and so the only way they can show us what they need is through their behaviour. As any dog owner will know, each pup has a unique personality, different temperaments and likes, and fussy eating can just be a little personality quirk.

The journey to finding foods that your fussy dog is excited to eat can take time, but it will help you get to know your pup better, and as a result guide you towards a menu that they will love.Family feeding dog in kitchen

In Conclusion: How to Deal with a Fussy Eater

Homemade food could be the ideal solution if your dog is a picky eater. In fact, one of the best ways you can help tailor food to your dog’s tastes is by experimenting with different dishes in your own kitchen, with the addition of Wellbeing Essentials Complete 22 - of course!

Pre-made dog foods and kibbles aren’t always appealing to pups, and so exploring real and nutritious homemade dog meals can be a great way to get picky dogs excited about their food.

Try introducing different meats and vegetables into your dog’s diet, bulking these out with dog-safe grains and adding fruits and bones in as little between-meal treats. Your dog will be attuned to delicious smells and fun textures, so get creative with some dog-safe foods and see what they like!

(And if you’re short on time, make sure to check out our blog on Quick and Easy Food Ideas For Dogs here.)

To all the parents of picky pups out there - you got this!

Dogs have different dietary needs to humans, and a lot of dogs won’t be receiving the levels of nutrients that they need to thrive. Having an idea of your dog’s basic nutrient needs and what they receive through their food should be a priority when it comes to structuring a well-rounded dog diet.

Like it or not, poop is one of the main ways we can keep an eye on our dog’s health - the colour, smell and consistency can be a first hand indicator into the health of our pups and whether something might be amiss inside.

What does it mean to be an “ethical” pet owner or have an eco-friendly dog anyway, and how can we take steps towards protecting the future of our - and our dogs’ - planet?

In this blog, we’re going to explore the evolving landscape of ethical pet ownership.