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 My husky Is eating everything but her food.

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Akira101
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PostSubject: My husky Is eating everything but her food.   Mon Jun 17, 2013 4:05 pm

hi everyone.
this is my first husky & she is doing my head in - she is 7mths old.

i've tried her on all the very best dog foods & kibble - she might try it once with no problem then the next time no way.

i have also tried her with tuna, sardines, salmon, chicken, cornbeef etc etc.

for example tonight, i tried her with potatoes, veg, steak & gravy but she just picked a bit at the steak
however when i was eating my own dinner she begged for my fish fingers & ate 4 but with some reservation i must say.

when i finished my dinner i brought out my favorite oatmeal & fruit biscuits she wolfed a packet of 5 & looked for more - she will eat any amount of buns & biscuits "if i give them to her".

now here's the thing that really gets me - when she is in the garden (and out for a walk) she eats & picks up all the rubbish & garbage of the day - tree twigs, slugs/worms or any other insect after digging them up, wasps, bees, butterflies, birds (already killed one), rabbits (she stuck her head through a bush this morning when walking & came out with a young one luckily i was able to get it off her in time), old paper tissues, soil/weed roots (again dug up) & other inedible objects.
anyone had similar problems? - apart from the food picking issue i'm afraid shes going to choke or damage her digestive system on something.

many thanks
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siku&nikolai
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PostSubject: Re: My husky Is eating everything but her food.   Mon Jun 17, 2013 4:13 pm

Huskies are very smart dogs, your puppy is training you right now. The dog knows if they don't eat their food, you will give in and give them yours. She has no reason to want to eat her kibble if she gets yummy table scraps, so they hold out for something better! Your puppy knows that if she begs you, she will receive. Trust me, if you don't feed them scraps, they will eat their food when they are hungry.

Keep an eye on her when you are out walking. You don't want them getting into something that can be harmful. If you see something ahead, avoid it or tug on the dogs leash, and say leave it, reward with treats if you need to. You don't want a potential problem down the road when they eat something they really shouldn't.
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Akira101
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PostSubject: Re: My husky Is eating everything but her food.   Mon Jun 24, 2013 5:05 am

hi sikul&nikolia - sorry did not reply sooner but recovering from a very bad chest infection - anyway, many thanks for your very helpful reply - just worried in case she chokes on something - as mentioned, she tortures me in the garden digging up roots & pulling down hedge branches & eating them - i've had to remove large pieces of wood jammed across the roof of her mouth 4 times - to be honest it has got to the (reluctant) stage of considering a muzzle, purely for her own safety.
i see you have 2 lovely dogs - do you think another dog would help distract her from her present state of mind?
she has a great spirit & considers everything a game (& i mean everything) - it takes 3 people to catch her to put on her harness & she won't be tempted in the slightest with her favorite treats - even when shes choking on the wood you cannot catch her - when they say this is an independent breed they aren't far wrong.
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Huskyluv
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PostSubject: Re: My husky Is eating everything but her food.   Mon Jun 24, 2013 9:38 am

Sounds like a fairly easy fix to me. Since she thinks everything is a game, you can use that to your advantage to lure her into a game of your choice to distract her from whatever she's getting into that you don't want her to. Or start keeping her on a long lead in the yard so you can grab the lead and remove her if she's got something she shouldn't. Never leave her unsupervised outside so she can't get into trouble.

As for the food, she's eating what she prefers and you're giving it to her and thereby your giving her what she wants is part of the problem. If she eats everything but her kibble then don't offer her anything but kibble so she has no other choice. Picky eaters are created and thus far that's exactly what YOU have been creating, as you can see by her eating everything she's really not that picky naturally.

If she thinks it's a game to have her harness put on, which she obviously does, then you've got to change your tactics. Make it boring and uneventful and ignore her if she turns it into a game. If the "game" ends as soon as it starts, i.e. all attention stops and everyone is boring or she is put in her crate to prevent an accident or in a separate room to calm down, then she will learn real quick that having her harness put on requires calm to get the ultimate reward of going outside.

As has been said, she is testing and training you and getting away with everything it sounds like. Good luck, sounds like she's going to require a lot of tough love but in the end it is so worth it.

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siku&nikolai
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PostSubject: Re: My husky Is eating everything but her food.   Mon Jun 24, 2013 10:06 am

I have had the same problems with my husky thinking putting on the harness is a game. But as mentioned above, just take the fun out of it. If Siku doesn't want his harness on, and wants me to chase him, then I'm not going to take him for a walk at that time. I just simply wait at the door, call his name and if I reach for him to put it on and he takes off, then I hang the harness back up, and I sit down, its really that easy. He needs to obey what you want him to do. I also like the idea of the leash in the back yard, so you are able to grab him quickly if he has anything he isn't supposed to in his mouth. Just take it out, give him a firm "no"  and he will eventually understand that it is not acceptable behavior to pick up anything he wants, or even after maybe put him back inside so he gets the picture. I would not suggest a second dog, unless you can afford him, have the time to properly take care of them, and have the training completely done with the first dog. If you don't have the first dog trained, you will most likely end up with a second dog that is untrained and you will have nothing but a headache. Just work on consistency and only feed him, his kibble for awhile and he will start to eat.
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Huskyluv
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PostSubject: Re: My husky Is eating everything but her food.   Mon Jun 24, 2013 11:11 am

Agreed, don't get a second dog to help fix a problem with the first. That's more than likely a disaster waiting to happen and will likely result in 2 holy terrors instead of one. When you have the first trained and are satisfied and still want a second that's when I'd consider another.

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Akira101
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PostSubject: Re: My husky Is eating everything but her food.   Mon Jun 24, 2013 5:11 pm

again thanks for your much appreciated response.

believe me i've tried all the tricks i know to outwit akira  but i swear she is psychic.

when she is playing "the harness game" with us she always does a "roadrunner" ie runs flat out with ears pinned back in a 30' wide circle so fast that she frequently loses her balance & tumbles over & over - her record at the minute is about 30 odd circuits non stop - as i mentioned it takes 3 of us to eventually corner her but not until she exits roadrunning mode - has anyone else experienced this particular type of behavior?

she will instantly stop eating the branches or roots when commanded "stop" only if they're still attached to the ground or hedge but a few minutes later she will be behind you munching  merrily away - she will not drop the branch even for her favorite treat & when we ignore her she still eats away & approaches you in a "so what are you going to do about it" manner.

she was very easy to house train & can consistently do the sit, down, left/right paw routine however, the only way i can get her to "come" is by saying "tickle tickle" (lol) - however this will not work if she becomes in the slightest way suspicious that you're trying to outwit her.

will agree that we probably have established a poor feeding method & she is spoiled  but when she rests her head on your knee with those big sad eyes (& ears) well.......i guess i'm just a sucker.

i will as suggested discipline her more regarding her food but i think with the other stuff, i'm up against it with this young girl??

btw we are self employed so she comes to work with us & has the (safe) run of a large warehouse space & outside toilet area however needless to say she eats wooden pallets, cardboard boxes, cleaning tissues, rubbish bags etc etc & does her usual roadrunning - she gets walked by ourselves & various members of our staff.

as mentioned its the choking hazard  that worries me most

had a german shepherd & lab 17/15 years respectively.
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siku&nikolai
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PostSubject: Re: My husky Is eating everything but her food.   Mon Jun 24, 2013 5:25 pm

Is there anyway when at work you can attach a leash to yourself, until she learns appropriate behavior of what she is and isn't allowed to be near or eat? This helped a lot when my dogs were puppies, I just leashed them to me that way I was always on top of unwanted behaviors and could see exactly what they are doing at all times. I know what you mean with those puppy eyes, I'm not always strong, my dogs do get occasional table scraps but nothing that would fill them up enough to make them not want to eat their food. Maybe try a new food with her, and at the same time stop feeding her the table scraps, and that way it will be new to her, and then she will learn to eat it after that when you do not give her anything.
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Akira101
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PostSubject: Re: My husky Is eating everything but her food.   Mon Jun 24, 2013 6:47 pm

siku&nikolai wrote:
Is there anyway when at work you can attach a leash to yourself, until she learns appropriate behavior of what she is and isn't allowed to be near or eat?

great idea regarding leash but unfortunately not practical at work.
from the beginning akira has always been "funny" about her food - she was definitely the runt of the litter so i don't know if that would weigh significantly on the overall situation?
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siku&nikolai
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PostSubject: Re: My husky Is eating everything but her food.   Tue Jun 25, 2013 10:16 am

I think all huskies can be picky eaters. One of mine will not eat when I put the food down, so I have to do a lot of free feeding, and he won't eat anything if its in his crate unless its only in his Kong. I think thats just how huskies are and it doesn't sound out of the ordinary. Have you guys tried Orijen? Thats what worked the absolute best for me, as I had to change food a million times before I came across Orijen.

If you don't already have a Kong for her, that could also help with her boredom at work and keep her busy. Especially if you freeze them. But if she hasn't had one before, make sure you start them off easy, so she can get the hang on them, and then make them harder and it will keep her attention.
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