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PitRottMommy, Veterinary Nurse
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 7702
Experience:  15 yrs experience in vet med, 8 in emergency med. Founder of a non-profit animal rescue
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I'm a pet sitter and received a telephone call from my

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I'm a pet sitter and received a telephone call from my client because her labordoodle bit her. First you should know she only feeds her dogs once a day at night. Here is how she explained it. She said her dog Tank [male] adopted from a dog pound 6 months ago is very possessive of his marrow bones. She gave all her dogs [ she has a total of 4 dogs] a marrow bone and this is Tanks behavior. He doesn't chew on his bone but rather he drops it at his feet and waits for one of the other dogs to come to it and then starts a fight with the other dog. She tried to break up the fight and got bitten today. He drew blood. She called me to warn me if the dogs start fighting with each other to stay out of it.
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. Is me bleeding a lot?
Customer: She is a nurse so she knows how to dress the wound. Yes she was bleeding alot. My concern is that I think her dogs are irritable because they only get fed once a day and get treats in between. Because I go to let them out mid day I sometimes feel they might take their anxiety out on me. My first question is: Shouldn't dogs be fed twice a day. Anyone that has to wait 24 hours a day to be fed can't be that happy.
JA: The Veterinarian will know what to do about this bleeding. I'll connect you ASAP. Is there anything else important you think the Veterinarian should know about me?
Customer: I don't need to know about the bleeding. I need to know about the dogs behavior and should he be fed mornings and nights instead of just once a day at night?
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
Are you consulting a dog behavioralist or trainer? Or are you able to answer this alone?

Hello, JACustomer. I have been a Veterinary Nurse for over 15 years and would be happy to help you today. I'm reviewing your question right now.

Do the dogs all appear to be in good health as far as their size?

Are there any other behavioral concerns?

What other breeds of dogs are in the pack?

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
One dog is small english bull dog I believe, one is a large poodle and then two are labordoodles one large and one small. Total 4 dogs.
I don't know the dogs long enough to say if they are in good health or not. She is very loving and cooks for her dogs at night.
The dogs are rather wild. She was very concerned hiring a pet sitter and was afraid one of her dogs would bit me. The English bull dog was abused and is afraid of men and you can't make eye contact with her. I love all animals and so the dogs accepted me right away. I am rather on edge each time I go there because the dogs seem not that well socialized . The appear to need a lot of exercise and she works all day. Does this answer your question.
I need to know if they should be fed twice a day. My veterinarian told me no dog should wait 24 hours to get a meal.
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
I can't call right now. I'm not billing my customer for this correspondence.
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
Are you able to answer my question about dogs being fed once a day affecting behavior or not?

It sounds like this is less of a 'when they're fed' issue and more of a 'they haven't had appropriate boundaries and training' problem. If she knows her dogs are prone to fighting when bones are given, you simply either don't give bones or you kennel every single dog and allow them to enjoy their bones alone. The labradoodle starting fights can be a direct link to poor training style, lax boundaries for the dogs and such. I do not believe timing has anything to do with this, as far as feeding. The dogs may be more anxious due to the feeding schedule, but most dogs are fine being fed once in a 24 hour period (thought by preference alone most owners feed 2-3 times daily). Even well fed, dogs who come from an unstructured home like the one you describe are prone to spats among them because the owner doesn't prevent it through training, avoiding high risk situations like dogs free roaming with high-value toys/treats, etc.

If you are to take care of these dogs, there needs to be some type of boundaries and barriers method being used. Feeding needs to take place separately. Bones need to be given separately or by the owner exclusively, etc. Prevention is going to be the most important aspect of keeping the household calm while you are in charge.

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
Are we done I'm not sure what is happening or if this is a delay or you are still reseaching???

The post is above, JACustomer. Can you see it?

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
Thank you so much for this information it is most helpful. I will pass it along to the owner.

Good luck to you both! If s/he is not familiar with the methods mentioned, hire a trainer to come to the home, evaluate the dogs as a pack and recommend what efforts need to be taken in training.

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