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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I've been living with my grandparents for a few months due to financial issues and the fact that I needed/wanted family around during and after my surgery. However, both my grandfather and grandmother feed Teddy from the table (and not always "okay" food either). When I first moved in, I lectured them calmly about why I didn't want Teddy to eat human food, especially from the table, and they promised not to. However, occasionally I'd catch them sneaking food to him whenever I walked out of the room. (Stuff like cookies, pie, cubesteak and gravy, fried chicken, etc.). They had an English Bulldog that was fed Iams and human food that isn't even good for people. (He used to get his own french fries and small vanilla ice cream cone a few times a month. My grandpa would justify it by saying "Potatoes are safe for dogs!" which he says about the food he gives Teddy, too.) The bulldog weighed 80 lbs and died of cancer (I think it was kidney cancer?) at 8 years old.

Anyway, I've tried everything to stress the importance of not feeding Teddy. I've tried educating them, scaring them (by saying they're killing him), and flat out yelling at them--nothing works. Worse still, they lie to my face about it: "I don't feed the dog from the table" and two seconds later they're doing it again. Keep in mind that neither of them are senile at ALL. They know exactly what they're doing, they just don't respect my authority enough to listen to me about my own dog. :mad:

I appreciate that they let me live with them (they pay for Teddy's expenses too) but I just can't deal with this bad habit. Dogs begging from the table is one of my BIGGEST pet peeves. Teddy used to be the kind of dog that wouldn't touch your plate if you left it unattended on a bed in plain reach. Now, he has his front paws on my leg or his face in mine every time I eat, and he's surprised me by stealing food right off my plate a few times. He's also stopped eating his dog food in protest (ZiwiPeak and Fromm). I've resorted to locking him in his crate during mealtimes or giving him a down-stay on his dog bed next to me where I can see him (and taking him with me if I leave the room for even a second).

How would you guys feel about this? How would you handle it? Teddy was an angel before and they're ruining him.. It makes me so sad! (They encourage him to bark at strange noises too after all the work I put in to clicker train him to be quiet during distracting noises.. But that's a different issue, I guess.) I'm hoping to move in with my boyfriend next year, but for the next six months at least I'm stuck here. :(
 

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They are from the 'old school' and they kill their dogs with food. Crate him during mealtime. I am a groomer and I groom a lot of FAT dogs just coz their owners cant stand to see them beg, or they 'free feed' altered dogs.
Most likely you wont change them. They mean well, they just dont get it and dont want to get it. My parents are just the opposite. They think dogs are dogs and they get cheap dog food and lucky to get that.

pam in TX
 

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Just don't allow him near the table at mealtimes. Put him in your room with the door closed. It sounds like they are going to do what they want to do, so just remove him from the situation.
 

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Ugh, that is so frustrating! My boyfriend and his mom do the same thing with my dogs. Last night I was over at his parent's house and his mom fed Lion a huge piece (like almost the size of my palm) of turkey skin. I was livid! I see nothing wrong with a bit of table scraps here and there, when they are dog appropriate and when I say so. However, I do not want my dogs to get sick or fat, especially since I am forking over my hard earned $ for ZiwiPeak and meat for my dogs so they can have a healthy diet.

I would talk to them again about it and let them know you are serious and it is really making you upset. Maybe you can buy a bag of healthy dog treats and set out a few for the day, and ask them to feed only the treats you provide?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
The problem is that when I leave the house, Teddy is in their care while they're home. I don't know what I can do to control the situation while I'm away. The rules must be so confusing for the little guy..
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I would talk to them again about it and let them know you are serious and it is really making you upset. Maybe you can buy a bag of healthy dog treats and set out a few for the day, and ask them to feed only the treats you provide?
I did that. There's a jar of 100% venison and chicken jerky treats right near the dining room table. They can't seem to help themselves. Then they go "He hates that food you bought him." Well, of course he does when he's being fed salty, greasy human food instead! :mad:
 

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Aw I wish I could help! I agree though, that must be so confusing for poor wittle Teddster! Like one parent saying yes and the other parent saying no! :confused:
 

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Yeah, I am not sure what you can do about it while you are away besides locking him up, which is no fun :(. Oh and of course he hates his food right now! That is like asking a kid who is constantly fed sweets if he wants ice cream or carrot sticks. I don't know what other advice to give but I hope they start to see it is bothering you.
 

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Don't know what advice I can offer but I know how you feel. I just took Axel for his first overnight visit to my parents house and I caught my dad feeding him ham and my mum feeding him bacon rind - how much salty processed meat do they think a less that 1kg puppy can handle? Their dogs are overweight and have bad body odour. Axel has never had any human table scraps before (he's 14 weeks), only dog food and raw chicken wings. I had intended for him to go through his whole life like that. He pays absolutely no attention to us while we're eating dinner but as soon as he starts recognizing what we're having as food i'm sure he will start begging. Luckily mum and dad will only be occasional care takers for Axel, it's so much harder for you having Teddy's daily routine disrupted :(
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Don't know what advice I can offer but I know how you feel. I just took Axel for his first overnight visit to my parents house and I caught my dad feeding him ham and my mum feeding him bacon rind - how much salty processed meat do they think a less that 1kg puppy can handle? Their dogs are overweight and have bad body odour. Axel has never had any human table scraps before (he's 14 weeks), only dog food and raw chicken wings. I had intended for him to go through his whole life like that. He pays absolutely no attention to us while we're eating dinner but as soon as he starts recognizing what we're having as food i'm sure he will start begging. Luckily mum and dad will only be occasional care takers for Axel, it's so much harder for you having Teddy's daily routine disrupted :(
I was the same way. :( I had high hopes that Teddy would go through his life without eating that stuff. I had him trained so that if food (or medicine) touched the floor he'd look right up at me and leave it alone. I'd give him a treat and pick up the dropped food/pill/etc. so he never felt like he was missing out. Now he's used to food hitting the floor and it being his.

I still have some control though. If I say "Leave it" as he's going for it he WILL halt. But that means it has to be far enough away from him that I have time to say it, and usually they end up putting food directly in his mouth..
 

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Sounds like your grandparents give Teddy food to show their "love".
My mother is like that because we grew up very poor in the ghetto, and there were numerous homeless dogs that were nearly emaciated.
So now she thinks all dogs are constantly starving. She used to give Rocky & Benji pancakes every time I visited her.
She would sneak it to them while cooking or eating.
I had no idea this was going on and could not figure out why they had diarrhea.
It took a few talks but she finally stopped gives my dogs food behind my back.
I gave her examples of safe treats and asked her to talk to me before giving them any, so later on I could adjust their meals accordingly.
Just have a sit down and explain the dangers of this behavior to your grandparents.
Be patient and polite, tell them that Teddy is really dear to you and his health is a priority.
Also you can suggest healthy human foods they can give, there are SO many things that'll benefit Teddy.
Carrots, pumpkin, apples, sweet potatoes, green beans, cheese, yogurt, chicken, fish,eggs, oatmeal, etc.

You don't have a right to get mad at them considering how much they do for you, but you do have a right to protect your dog's well being.

Best of luck! :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Yeah. I tried to talk to them again and offered a different solution. Teddy goes in his crate which is in the next room during mealtimes, and we keep one of his bowls on the table to put dog-safe scraps in to feed him after we're done eating. That way I get to see what he's being fed before they feed it to him and he won't get to practice begging or eating at the table! They seemed receptive of the idea, so we'll see how it goes. ;)
 
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