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How do you know when your Chi is getting enough food?

Up until recently I would give Jaxx 1/2 cup of food a day. I tried giving it to him twice a day 1/4 cup but no matter what I did he would only eat a few bites of food and if I did it twice a day most of the time he would just leave the food alone totally after doing this for a couple days I was afraid of him getting sick from not eating so I just put out the 1/2 cup in the morning and by evening it used to be all but a little bit of it was gone.

In the past week he has been eating all of his food by 3 or 4 pm but he keeps going back to the bowl like he is looking for more. I have been giving him a little more but I do not want to give him so much that he gains weight and gets overweight for health reasons. Right now his weight the vet says is good but I do not want him to go hungry.

Since his eating habits have changed recently I am just not sure if he is actually hungry or is he just trying to pick and get more food.

Jaxx never eats fast like he is starving but he never has done that. He has the habit that he gets a piece of food and brings it from his bowl and eats it beside me (like he is saying look I am eating.) When we first got him he would take his food to his bed like he was afraid someone would take it from him, I figured that was from having so many puppies in one home he probably had to fight for his food. It used to be that he would only bring one piece at a time to eat in front of me but I have also noticed in the last week he has started bringing 3 or 4 pieces and dropping them in front of me to eat then going back for more after those were finished.

Are there any signs to know to feed a dog more than the amount that they were getting?
 

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Feeding a growing puppy is like hitting a moving target. Their needs change as they grow. Given what you've described, I would increase his food slightly by either putting a little more in his bowl in the morning or giving him a little more in the afternoon when his bowl gets empty. Give it a week or two. If he gets chunky you can always cut it back again.
 

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My guy is about 4 months old, and also gets 1/2 cup of Wellness puppy kibble a day. He's not enthusiastic about eating from his bowl either. Here are some things I do to get the food into him.

Each morning I take some kibble from the measuring cup and put it in a few containers around the house. As the day goes along, I use that spare food to practice commands like 'come', 'sit', and 'down'. He seems eager to do this, and I know he's getting a bit more food in. I also put very small dabs of peanut butter on his chew bone a few times a week. Lately, since he's been teething, I have been freezing some of his softened leftover breakfast portion of food on a bone and giving that to him in the crate. Same amount of food, just given in different ways.

Good luck with Jaxx. It sounds like you are great mom to him.

Here are a few pictures of the growing boy !
Handsome boy ! | Flickr - Photo Sharing!
Barney, 4 months old, yummy dried plant stem ! | Flickr - Photo Sharing!
 

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I agree with Terri.
Amount fed will vary by manufacturer. He is a growing puppy so I would more overfeed a puppy than under feed.

Are you feeding by the bag specifications or by calories by his weight as recommended?

You will want to get him accustomed to eating when you want him to eat. Catering too much to him to get him to eat will work in the reverse and you will grow a picky eater who has to have things a certain way, on a certain plate and he'll hold out for something better because he will learn that you will cave. You'll not want that.
 

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Going on 4 months old here and sometimes she can't get enough food and other days she is not so interested. I spoke to the vet about it the other day and she said this is about the time a a healthy pup does this and I shouldn't be concerned as long as she is healthy, she will self regulate. If she goes one way or the other on the spectrum as it relates to weight, correct it here in the home adjusting amounts accordingly and if we hit a wall call the office, as a puppy this size can go one way or the other much more rapidly than larger puppies I am used to. I was getting nervous when she wasn't clearing her bowl, but she is almost 4 pounds now and I figure when she has a light meal she will hit it heavier then next one and that's how it usually works out. She did make sure to tell me to try not to make food a big deal, because that can start some habits that are undesirable when they get older. After 15-20 minutes I am to continue to take the bowl up. (I don't free feed here).

Today she was paws out at my grandmothers, with 3 dogs, 3 little kids, a cat & 6 adults ~ she had the time of her life. Tonight I expected her to inhale supper, she really wasn't interested in more than a few bites ~ she wanted immediate bed rest. So tomorrow I am guessing it will be the Big Breakfast for her.
 

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I free feed all of mine and it works very well for us. And taking the kibbies around to eat them is a chi thing for some reason. LOL All of mine do that too. Anywho, I just keep kibble available all the time and they eat when they are hungry. They generally do the same as yours is and just snack on and off throughout the day. All of mine stay at their correct weight and I've had not trouble with this if you want to see how your little one does.
 
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