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 New Husky Owner! (who needs help!)

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JupitertheRedGiant
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PostSubject: New Husky Owner! (who needs help!)   Thu Sep 01, 2016 2:22 pm

Hey everyone! I'm Elliott, and let me start off by saying that I'm really excited to be a part of an active, positive community. I've been reading some posts and I love the energy here.

I adopted my first dog, Jupiter, on Tuesday, two days ago. My family has had dogs, but I've missed having a companion since I moved out. I did a lot of research in the months leading up to his adoption, so I really thought I was ready. I easily watched hours worth of dog training videos and read every article I could find. I live in an apartment but I do lead a very active life style, especially in winter, so I'm confident I could give my dog the exercise he or she would need. I knew I wanted a big, high energy dog, and thats exactly what I got with Jupiter.

As far as I've read, Jupe's an incredibly well behaved Sibe. He's 3 or 4 years old and had been in the shelter for about two weeks after being brought in as a stray. He is house and create trained, is surprisingly quiet (he's only barked three or four times), doesn't jump on the couch or bed, and doesn't pull much on the leash, which is good because he is HUGE. I'm not joking when I call him my red giant. I haven't gotten a chance to weigh him, but he's easily 60 lbs at least.

So the issues: He won't eat.

I got him a few treats for the hour ride home from the shelter (he does great in a car) and he was very picky about them, but he did eat one. We got home and got him settled in. A friend of mine helped set up his create and watched him while I ran into the store to return the bed he dwarfed. We took him on about an hour walk before my friend mentioned that how fun the dog park would be. I realize now that I should have waited for him to be more comfortable before putting him in that exciting of an environment. He did really well aside from a dominance display and we left after about an hour. We went on another walk and called it a night. He drinks a lot of water, but wouldn't touch his food. Still won't. He ate some shrimp that I had for dinner, but the kibble went untouched. I read that hunger strikes aren't all that uncommon for newly adopted dogs, so I figured one day of not eating would get him hungry enough for the next day.

Yesterday we woke up at 8, went on a short hike and made it to the dog park by about 9:30. We walked around trails for a while on leash and I tried playing fetch but he hasn't shown any interest in toys. We went to a different park and there was an event going on for the local college and he got lots of attention. I didn't see any signs of distress from him because of all the people around and he seemed happy enough so we stayed for another hour or so. We walked home, took a nap, and I bought a wet food for him to try (Freshpet Vital, grain free) he seemed to like the smell of it in the store but wouldn't touch it when we got home. Then we went to a reservoir to swim, because he'd been very interested in rivers and ponds. We didn't stay long, and he stayed on leash the whole time. We took another nap and then went for one final walk to a friends house. He met their small dog Rocco, and they got along fairly well. We introduced them on leash and went slow and soon they were playing tug-o-war and chasing each other around the house. Then Jupiter noticed his cat and things got a little tense. We left immediately but I do think we scared his cat pretty bad, even though there wasn't any contact.

Last night he stayed in my room, and at about 4am I woke up to him throwing up bile in the corner. I cleaned it up and he walked out and fell asleep in the living room. He threw up again at about 7. I don't know if it's nerves, or if he drank from a bad water source, or what but any advice would be welcome. He's been very lethargic today, and hasn't shown any sign of wanting to go out.

I'm really sorry for the huge wall of text, but I'm hoping it'll give a thorough enough background to help.
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MiyasMomma
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PostSubject: Re: New Husky Owner! (who needs help!)   Thu Sep 01, 2016 2:36 pm

Welcome to the forum Smile the bile is from a lack of food. What did the rescue or place you got him from feed him? What are you trying to feed him? Although he may be feeling great and comfy with you sometimes eating is the sign of an animal being stressed. Even new puppies going to their new home may have eating issues the first week or two. So don't get too upset. What I would do, is maybe give him a bland meal of boiled chicken(no bones) and white rice(not minute) to get some food in his belly, once we all know what the foods are/were will be more helpful on what to do next. If it's a quality grain free, then I would mix some in to the bland meal. That way you get his appetite started, and you can start getting him to enjoy his kibble.
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TigerCzarina
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PostSubject: Re: New Husky Owner! (who needs help!)   Thu Sep 01, 2016 2:49 pm

Congrats on your new furbaby!

If he keeps throwing up, it could be worth bringing him in to the vet (which wouldn't be a bad idea given he's a new dog anyway). I will say that when we rescued Mia, she did the exact same thing. She didn't eat for two days, and threw up bile the third day (all over the landlords new carpet-he was thrilled).

I'm not the most experienced husky owner on here, so I'm sure someone will have better insight then me...but my advice would be to bring him to the vet to get established there, and keep an eye on the not eating to see if it continues or is just from being in a new environment. Honestly, though, my gut says he's probably just a bit nervous and unsure, and will eat in a couple days.

Also keep in mind huskies are thrifty eaters, and sometimes (in my experience) will randomly skip a meal, just because. So don't panic! You sound like you're doing great!

Good luck! Smile
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JupitertheRedGiant
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PostSubject: Re: New Husky Owner! (who needs help!)   Thu Sep 01, 2016 2:58 pm

Thank you MiyasMomma! I'll start thawing the chicken right away. The shelter I got him from fed all of their dogs donated food, so it wasn't consistent. A friend of mine bought a bag of kibble for me as a congratulations present of sorts and it's the Alpo Prime Cuts beef flavored. When he didn't eat that I tried the brand Freshpet, wet food Vital, grain free and salmon flavored.
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JupitertheRedGiant
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PostSubject: Re: New Husky Owner! (who needs help!)   Thu Sep 01, 2016 3:01 pm

TigerCzarina, I'm so so grateful for the reassurance! I've already proven to be a nervous dog mom, so I couldn't be happier with this mild tempered beauty
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MiyasMomma
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PostSubject: Re: New Husky Owner! (who needs help!)   Thu Sep 01, 2016 3:45 pm

The fresh pet isn't a bad food, not too familiar with it. Do you have a Tractor Supply store, or a feed store nearby? I would feed something that is meat protein no corn, wheat, soy, grain free. Huskies are notorious at being picky eaters and self regulate, to the point of going a day or two without eating. With that said, I would pick a grain free and stick with that, and if he doesn't eat here and there no biggie, if throwing up bile is a consistent or frequent thing then vet visit. I agree with Dev, vet visit is needed just to establish a rapport. Here is a list in order of price (highest to lowest) of foods that most huskies enjoy eating and do well on......Orijen(altho for some too rich, too high in protein), Acana, Fromm, Merrick, Earthborne, Victor, Wellness, Candidae, Taste of the Wild, Natures Domain, Diamond, 4 Health, if these are not available, then online Chewy.com is a great place, believe they have all of those except for Nature's Domain (it's a Costco product) and 4 health (it's a Tractor Supply product), at the very least if none of these are available and Walmart is your only choice then I would opt for their Pure Balance grain free line. Just checked and the fresh pet is a 5 star food, so you could use this as a mix in to kibble. Personally I think raw is the best way to go, and then a quality kibble. the fresh pet, is complete, but I feel that the kibble helps with our pets teeth. All the products I listed are 4 and 5 star foods.
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aljones
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PostSubject: Re: New Husky Owner! (who needs help!)   Thu Sep 01, 2016 3:53 pm

Hi Elliott, let me also welcome you to the forum - We've got a great responsive group of members here.

Yep, As Miyasmomma said, the bile is simply from a lack of food.  Nothing too unusual about that.  And, as TigerCzarina said, not eating when situations change is also normal; not eating at all occasionally is also not unexpected, for some reason Huskies 'fast' from time to time ...

Since you said that the shelter feeds donated food, which means their dogs will get almost anything, Jup should be ready to eat when everything also settles down for him.  While this may sound counter-intuitive, you might simply want to spend more time with him at home.  All of your excursions may be unsettling to him since he's new to you and vice versa.  Obviously, if he indicates he wants out, then go ... if he indicates that he wants a walk / run then indulge him but I'd be more inclined to 'let him settle' before too many excursions to dog parks, etc.

Your gut feeling when you say "I realize now that I should have waited for him to be more comfortable before putting him in that exciting of an environment." is exactly what I'm trying to say - he's undergoing a lot of changes and people and dogs, generally, are not immediately adaptable. I'd be one who keeps the interaction to him and me as much as possible until he really settles in and is comfortable. One thing you'll find is that Huskies, generally, one of the most friendly (not necessarily sociable) breeds going, few of them have ever met someone who isn't a friend - but I'd think that even all the attention can be overwhelming for him in a new situation.

You'll also find that when you own a Husky, patience is a great virtue. They have none, so you have to make up for it.

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amymeme
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PostSubject: Re: New Husky Owner! (who needs help!)   Thu Sep 01, 2016 4:14 pm

Welcome to the forum and congrats on your big red! I've got a big fluffy red (last check 73# but I believe he needs to lose 4-5# Husband doesn't agree with me)

It took 2-3 months before my boys digestion was settled after adopting him at 1 yr from a shelter. The in part was fine - he gulped his food avidly. It was the other end that was the problem. From an impressive 3 ft diameter, 360° spray of liquid poop around his crate 1 morning to constant pudding poop, it was a bit of a challenge. I attributed the change to normal to switching first to 4 Health and then to Taste of the Wild but, looking back, I really have to wonder how much was really just settling in.

I would first, take him to the vet for a health check, fecal, records review (bring the paperwork you got from the adoption.) Then I would choose a good quality food that you are comfortable with (probably grain free is better) and stick with it at least 2 weeks, preferably even a month. Dogfoodadvisor.com is a good place to review foods. This boy has had change after change - give him some stability and a chance to acclimate - both to you and his new home and to the new diet. Try not to entice him with treats, table food or you will find yourself in a real pickle 3 months from now when that's all he'll eat. In fact, I would not give him treats until he was eating the equivalent of 1.5 - 2 Cups of TOTW per day. Pick a consistent feeding time - I prefer 2-3 times per day but once a day is ok, too. Also - how's his weight? Can you feel ribs? You should be able to feel ribs easily. His hipbones should NOT be sharp or prominent. Does he look skinny? Feel padded?

Note - even now, my boy will skip a meal or 2, especially in summer and most especially if we are traveling. I always pack 3 cups a day of food and end up bringing most of it back - he just doesn't eat on trips. I chalk it up to too much excitement - he wants to see and do everything.

Good luck - he really is a handsome boy!
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AryaGirl
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PostSubject: Re: New Husky Owner! (who needs help!)   Thu Sep 01, 2016 4:53 pm

Have you tried putting wet food on his kibble? And welcome!! Smile Sometimes my lady doesn't eat either, for whatever reason.. wet food always does it.. OR "people food" (lol) - chicken, carrots, beef - if you look on google they have tons of list of foods can you feed him.
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JupitertheRedGiant
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PostSubject: Re: New Husky Owner! (who needs help!)   Thu Sep 01, 2016 6:18 pm

Mis Renee, thank you for such a sincere response, honestly I can't tell you how reassuring it is to have this resource and having such a quick and helpful community to turn to. I'll definitely be checking these brands out, but for now I'm going to try to convince him to eat the chicken and rice (which he hasn't touched), and I've got a vet date set for Saturday.

Mr Jones, thank you so much for the reassurance! We went on a quick walk around the block because he was getting antsy but we've spent nearly all day inside.
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JupitertheRedGiant
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PostSubject: Re: New Husky Owner! (who needs help!)   Thu Sep 01, 2016 6:26 pm

Mis Amy, those resources will be invaluable, and I guess I've got something to be grateful for with the lack potty issues! I've got a vet date set with him for Saturday, and we'll start a feeding schedule right away. Should I leave the bowl out, or put it away even if he doesn't eat?

From what I know about dogs, he's got a pretty healthy weight. I can feel his ribs, but they're not prominent, nor are his hips and spine.

AryaGirl, thanks for the tips! I put a little ham in his kibble, but that didn't seem to do it. I'll try mixing the wet and dry, to see how he feels about it.
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amymeme
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PostSubject: Re: New Husky Owner! (who needs help!)   Thu Sep 01, 2016 7:16 pm

@JupitertheRedGiant wrote:
Mis Amy, those resources will be invaluable, and I guess I've got something to be grateful for with the lack potty issues! I've got a vet date set with him for Saturday, and we'll start a feeding schedule right away. Should I leave the bowl out, or put it away even if he doesn't eat?

From what I know about dogs, he's got a pretty healthy weight. I can feel his ribs, but they're not prominent, nor are his hips and spine.

AryaGirl, thanks for the tips! I put a little ham in his kibble, but that didn't seem to do it. I'll try mixing the wet and dry, to see how he feels about it.

Put his bowl out, with a bowl of water beside, leave it 20 minutes, if he doesn't touch it put it away, offer at the next scheduled feeding time.

As for walking - probably the best bonding experience I can think of for a husky. At least a couple of long walks a day. When we first got Ami, I walked him first thing in the morning, had play time with him noon-ish, another long walk late afternoon, early evening, a somewhat shorter walk just before bed, then a "midnight snack" hand fed just before bed. I think I was feeding him after his morning and evening walks, not before but that was 3 years ago, not quite sure.

I really think you need to stop trying to get him to eat and just offer the food you decide upon, without tidbits or treats. Unless he has a significant medical problem and his weight is dangerously low, he really is in no danger if he misses some meals. To cajole him into eating with yummy tidbits added to his food is to invite a picky eater into your home. I used to use Ami's kibble as his treats, taking a handful in my pocket to reward him for training on walks.
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Jamie Fox
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PostSubject: Re: New Husky Owner! (who needs help!)   Fri Sep 02, 2016 12:55 am

I completely agree about NOT putting treats or mixing mixing food to entice him to eat. If you are only going to feed him kibble on a regular basis, don't mix it with wet food, and yes put it away if he doesn't eat it.
We just adopted a Husky 4 days ago and was going thru the same thing. She just ate her first full bowl of kibble, instead of picking thru it.... yeah she was putting some in her mouth and then laying in on the floor and picking thru the kibble .. LOL Silly

Good Luck with him he sure is a gorgeous guy!!
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Michelle Dobson
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PostSubject: Re: New Husky Owner! (who needs help!)   Wed Sep 21, 2016 9:54 pm

jupiter he is one pretty boy! Let me say THANK YOU for adopting from a shelter. Bravo! Nothing makes me happier.
My husky has a pretty sensitive tummy but is also picky and has stopped eating a couple times in his life.
Here is what I feed my husky and I think he is quite healthy and beautiful. Very soft and has good bowels. hehe.

MY dogs run 5-10 miles every frickin morning...omg...or there is hell to pay. I do not feed my dogs before we run but they do get some treats along the way as we are always training. I only buy healthy organic treats...and often bake my own.

As soon as we get home I give each of my dogs a frozen hamburger patty with frozen carrots broccoli or cauliflower. My dogs are ice dogs and like cold things...being frozen forces them to chew lol. this is usually about noon.

For kibble I buy Whole Earth Farms .
In the evening they get their kibbles. I like my dogs to eat their kibbles when presented and not leave it in the bowl. But my dogs balk a bit at kibble...my trick...they love love love them some coconut oil. So I melt coconut oil and stir it in their food.

On sundays I substitute raw egg for the coconut oil. They love the raw egg but I found they don't like it everyday.

So I have an opposite view of mixing stuff with the kibble. But I give my dogs coconut oil and raw egg anyways so it is very convenient that it makes them love their kibble!

I also feed a very few table scraps if it is something bland and unspiced. Nothing spicy for a husky and not very many scraps! However I always give it with the kibble because I'm a fan of a set meal time.
Good luck figuring it all out! I think your going to be a fantastic furparent.

here is my Goochk
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