How Do You Keep Dogs From Eating Other Dogs' Food?
Winquist owns four dogs. She also boards dogs for her clients and may have as many as six or seven dogs in her house at one time. "I never have a problem with one dog eating another dog's food," she says. "It's all about the fact that I'm the one in control of the food."
At feeding time, she puts food in a dog's bowl and then calls the dog by name to come eat. She says because the dogs see her as the one controlling the food, the other dogs know the food belongs to the dog she gave it to and they don't bother that dog.
"You have to watch," she says, "and pick up the bowl after the dog stops eating. If you leave it sitting out other dogs will naturally check it out."
You can also separate the dogs at feeding time. "Move the bowls farther apart by putting them in different parts of the room or even in other rooms," Carreker says.
Is It OK to Give Dogs Food Like Fruits and Vegetables?
"Absolutely," Carreker says. "They make an excellent treat, and they make the dog feel fuller with less calories and no fat." There are certain foods dogs shouldn't have, she says. "For instance, they can't have onions because onions can cause anemia. And grapes and raisins can cause acute kidney failure."
Winquist cautions that you should not give your dog food from your plate at the table or from the counter while you are preparing a meal. "I give my dogs fresh fruits and vegetables all the time. But I don't do it while I'm cooking or while I'm eating. Doing so teaches dogs to beg."
How Do You Deal With Food Aggression?
Carreker says food aggression and a dog being possessive of food are behavioral problems that may often be seen in rescue dogs or dogs that are adopted from a shelter. "Sometimes, it's a result of the dog's new environment and being uncertain about what's going to happen. If it is, it may improve once the dog knows it's going to be fed. If it doesn't, I typically refer clients to a dog behaviorist who will come into their home and observe the dog."