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Old 09-16-2006, 09:49 AM   #1
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Question Stealing Meg's food

Hi everyone,

I have a 2 year old chocolate lab (Meg) and and 12 week old golden lab (Bonnie). Meg has always been very unlabrador-like with her food, she doesn't eat fast and will leave chews etc for later. Bonnie is another story! Meg's really, really been amazing with the puppy and has been chewed to bits by the puppy. The problem is Meg just WILL NOT reprimand her for anything at all. When Meg is eating, Bonnie will just stick her head in her bowl and start eating Megs food and Meg just stands there like she's thinking, 'hey, what are you doing? (wag, wag, wag!)'. We've had to intervene and have trained Bonnie now so that she knows she can't go over until Meg is finished.

The problem really is that whenever Meg has a chew, just like a child, Bonnie always wants the one Meg has and Meg can't get a moments peace without having her chew nicked and she just lets Bonnie have it and then sits there all sad watching Bonnie eat her chews! I know that's pretty normal puppy behaviour (or that's what I've been told - we've always had dogs but only one at a time). Everyone says 'oh Meg will tell her off if she goes too far' but Meg literally never does a thing, she is the softest dog I have ever met! So my question really is should I intervene and keep stopping Bonnie from doing it? Or should I separate them to eat chews? Or should I really just leave them too it? I just don't want Bonnie to grow up thinking she can just have whatever she wants off Meg and I don't want her to get food aggressive towards Meg or anything.

Sorry for the long post, was trying to cover all aspects! Any advice appreciated...

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Old 09-17-2006, 12:08 PM   #2
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My puppy steals my older dog's chew things... but eventually she just steals it back. They spend the whole time stealing it back and forth lol...

If you don't want her stealing it at all, you may just want to seperate them while they're chewing on something.

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Old 09-17-2006, 12:43 PM   #3
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i would probably seperate them with chews, to give Meg some quiet time when the pup isn't all over her! i don't think that being able to steal any thing whe wants from Meg will set Bonnie up for food aggression, possibly more the other way around, as the pup matures. chews are important for tooth health, so let Meg have a chance!
just my opinion!
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Old 09-17-2006, 05:35 PM   #4
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Most dogs are very tolerant of puppies. That usually changes at 4-5 months old... and it usually changes rather abruptly.

I think you'll need to give Meg some alone (and quiet!) time and some one on one time with you. When you feed her and the pup, the pup should be blocked from getting access to her food to prevent stealing. Although Meg may seem "okay" with it right now, later on it could be a problem... stealing another dogs food goes against doggy "rules" (this is why there is soooo much food aggression). Also, the dogs should be seperate when given high value items like raw bones... later on, real fights could start over them. Also, bitch-bitch fights tend to be the worst combination for fights.

I would also pick up Megs bowl when she's done eating... whether or not there's food in it.
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Old 09-18-2006, 04:27 AM   #5
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Thanks everyone that's great advice I will do the things suggested. I have heard the bitch-bitch fighting can be serious and I was worried about that. Bonnie's starting to come up towards the 4 month age so will start separating them. Thanks again for the help, much appreciated

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Old 09-18-2006, 05:28 AM   #6
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I had two male poodles - 6 weeks age difference - whatever one had the other one wanted. After castration and maturity they sorted it out. Charlie wasn't a big eater and Dennis ate like it was his last meal - Charlie used to always leave some meal in his bowl and dennis would finish it.

With chews Charlie was lazy and waited for Denis to start a chew and then he'd steal it and leave his whole chew intact for denis.

Dogs ............... like kids

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