Excessive hunger

Posted by doggiemom
Feb 18, 2008
I got Max 2 months ago from our animal control. He was a stray and they had him 1 week. The guess is that he is a terrier/dachshund mix, now approx. 11 months old, and weighs 13.5 lbs. He is a sweet dog, a bit hyper, and compatible with my 6 year old female. He was neutered 1 month ago.

From day one, he has behaved as if he hadn't eaten in a week. At the shelter his cage had a large bowl of dry food, so he was able to eat anytime. The day after I brought him home I took him to my vet for a health check and they said his weight was good. They instructed me to feed l/4 cup dry food twice a day. This just did not work. This dog inhales food and hardly chews at all. They said I could give him 1/3 cup and that is a joke. I have been feeding l/2 cup Science Diet twice a day and at dinner I add a little (couple of tablespoons) of canned food. This does not satisfy him. He gets some treats and rawhide chews (which he eats straight away). He is constantly foraging for food. He eats my female's feces (not his own) and when outside will eat twigs, branches or anything he can find.

About two to three hours before dinner he starts getting nervous. That's when he will eat anything he can find...pens, shoes, etc....last night I stepped out of the room for a half minute before dinner and he got on the table and was eating our salad, onion and all.

He is not aggressive with food. I feed both dogs at the same time and when he's finished (less than a minute) he waits nicely for my other dog to finish.

I have been applying all of the Alpha dog techniques, and he waits nicely for his dinner, so I do believe his overall behaviour is managable.

I have tried rocks in his food bowl to slow down his eating and it's not working. I have never seen a dog like this. My son has bred dogs and he also says he's never seen a dog eat like this.

He poops 4 - 5 times a day and does not have good urine control. Not knowing what the first 9 months of his life was like, I can't decide if this is a health or behaviour issue.

I got my female from a shelter at about the same age. Her weight increased by l/3 by the time she was two years old. I can assume Max is still growing and perhaps is requiring more food. Last night I did a test and after he ate his dinner gave him more. He ate another l/2 cup and probably would have had more had it been offered.

He is a high energy dog and gets plenty of fresh air and exercise.

I welcome any recommendations.
Posted by Blue
Feb 27, 2008
It's funny, I just posted this idea for another KOP user, and I think it may be something you could use also!

The idea is collar that contains compressed air - the owner has a remote, where when the dogs behaviour starts to do it's bad behaviour, you blast the dog with a little jet of air. There are three-four settings on the remote for different levels of behaviour problem (the more excited the higher the pressure).

The collar is nice, as it isn't an electric shock collar - it's just air. It works on the principle of surprising the dog before the behaviour has a chance to escalate - allowing you the time to reprimand and correct the behaviour with a command like sit-stay, heel, or down-stay.

When using something like this, make sure you read the instructions thoroughly before applying the techniques. Like usually you are required to have the dog wear the collar for a week or so before using it to reprimand, so the dog doesn't associate the collar with the reprimand - this is so that if you take the collar off - the dog will still listen to you!

The nice thing also is that the dog isn't going to associate the reprimand of the collar directly to you, the way a spray bottle is associated. So no fear of the dog becoming immune to it, or fearful of you.

Not the same as the one I saw, but similar in concept is this product:
[url=http://www.multivet.net/en/products/spray_commander/index.asp]Multivet Spray Commander remote trainer spray collar[/url]
Posted by faithfuldog
Apr 17, 2008
I am not a proffessional but that sounds more like a dominance issue/boredem issue. High energy dogs need to be given a job or they will respond this way. Also they need to learn you are the boss. For me, with a dog like this, I have had to work to be the Alpha, then I take her out and get her lots and lots of exercise. Some of that exercise needs to be mentally challenging. Just putting on a back pack and making my dog heal for 35-45min a day has helped. Some people who don't have time have found it useful to use a treadmill. It is challenging to get started but once they learn they begin to enjoy it and come to you to get on.

Hope this helps.