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rules question

PostPosted: 04 Jan 2014, 18:07
by mamapup
Here's a question I often struggle with and would love to k ow what others do:

I make a meal I think the puppy would like based on other likes (today was organic burgers, mash.and beans) he refused to touch any of it really. He kept trying to feed.us and then got down.when we told him we were happy with our own plates. He keeps returning to the plate that I have left on the table but only to look. I don't think he's starving but I know he'd eat the cheese.or.fruit he's asking for.

He will eat mash at times and burgers are basically meatballs, which he loves. I don't want to encourage him to fussiness so thought we'd try burgers tonight.

So, do others give in and allow the fruit, cheese.or.weetabix he's just brought me or do you stick to your guns? I don't want him to be hungry but I do think he has to learn to try stuff.

Re: rules question

PostPosted: 04 Jan 2014, 18:11
by madcatmummy
It depends on how stubborn I'm feeling tbh! I would like them to at least try something and if they won't try it then I wouldn't offer anything else. If they only eat a couple of bits then I would perhaps give a little fruit or cheese. At 18m JT was at his worst as far as not eating went. He still refuses to eat sometimes and being hungry doesn't seem to stop him from sleeping at all.

Re: rules question

PostPosted: 04 Jan 2014, 18:25
by pirate_han
B has never had many snacks, so she doesn't really ask for food away from the table. We give her her meal - she chooses her own breakfast but has what she's given for breakfast and lunch - and she either eats it or she doesn't. DH and I have a rule that we do not comment on whatever she is doing or how she is eating something (the other day she put her yoghurt on her knee and licked it off!) and actually since we implemented that rule she is far better with trying things. No pressure I guess. If she's had enough she hands her plate back and we take it without comment even if she hasn't touched it. We always offer fruit and yoghurt after meals which she will have 95% of the time so she doesn't go hungry. If she didn't touch her meal and said no to yoghurt/fruit I would assume she wasn't hungry and she'd have to wait until the next meal. That's what works for us.

Re: rules question

PostPosted: 04 Jan 2014, 18:27
by FestiveTidings
As a child I was a fussy eater and would be regularly expected to eat foods I didn't like the look of or genuinely didn't like. My mum didn't force the issue but my dad was completely opposite and I spend several nights, sitting at the dining table staring at a plate of food before being sent to bed hungry (mum worked nights). As a result I'm very relaxed with food and if roo doesn't eat it, then he doesn't eat it and i will offer him something else after dinner has been cleared away or if he asks for it.

I know that goes against the grain for a lot of people and it annoys DH to some extent until I point out I don't expect him to eat anything he doesn't want to! It's what you feel comfortable with and what works for your family.

Puppy is still wee. There is plenty time for him to learn to try things when he's a bit older.

Don't let it phase you - toddlers are often fussy!

And just to add, from a bring a fussy child, I now eat practically anything (except rubbery fat and pease pudding!)

Re: rules question

PostPosted: 04 Jan 2014, 18:56
by mamapup
Thanks. So, I'd agree with madcatmummy that what we do depends on how stubborn I'm feeling! But I know this doesn't help with consistency for the puppy. Normally I do let him have fruit post meal but tonight I didn't want to because there is no reason to not eat a burger if he'll eat meatballs. It's the same damn thing! He really 'wanted' to try it but just couldn't quite get it in his mouth (not a lack of ability but a braveness thing, I think). I don't tell him off or comment particularly. Tonight I asked him to try a bite of burger and asked him not to stand in his chair a few times (sigh) but we also let him mess around with food so that he enjoys it more.

Actually tonight with the plate left there he ended up eating almost half the burger. There was no pressure just we said no when he asked for other food. I guess if he weren't such a fruit fiend we'd have less problem offering fruit after every meal but that really is his idea of heaven and he really doesn't like to try new foods at all.

FT, thanks. I know he's just little and like B (yes, I know she's p_h's, not yours!), the puppy chooses his own breakfast and then I try to ensure lunch is something I know he'll eat and supper is either snacky or something I think he could like if he'd only be braver! I'm certainly not mean about serving stuff he might hate. Yesterday, at lunch, friends commented on how well he eats (and he does when he wants to) but it was because we were out so I bought stuff I know are sure fire winners and man, did he pack away a lot: noodles, meatballs (pork and lemongrass, yum), frozen yoghurt, apple, satsuma, cheese, yoghurt, bread and whole pot of shop bought grapes. Then an entire pack of watermelon from M&S.

Oh, an P_h, we also don't do snacks any more. We did but I think that was because we were always with kids who eat snacks and main meals. Once I realised the puppy wasn't eating meals because snacks are yummier I stopped the snacks and things improved a lot.

Re: rules question

PostPosted: 04 Jan 2014, 19:04
by Tintin
Stompy won't eat burgers. She never has. Point blank refuses them.

The girl adores meatballs, and sausages, and stuffing balls made out of sausage meat... but sort of flatten that ball into a burger shape and she will not let it pass her lips. I don't understand the logic, but I don't see that it's worth the fight with her. There's only so many times you can tell her that, honestly, she would like it if she tried it, before it becomes a battle of wills thing where she refuses to try it simply to annoy us!

Re: rules question

PostPosted: 04 Jan 2014, 19:09
by mamapup
Interesting, Tinsel, maybe that's like Mr.C not liking spaghetti but linguini is fine (sigh). I don't think we've really ever offered a burger before but I suspect he's eaten them at nursery. And in the end he ate almost half and did his 'yummy' noise so maybe if I really, really think it's something he'll like I should just stay quiet and not offer other stuff.

Normally we put some of what he doesn't eat in a little tub with some fruit after supper and he can do what he wants with it (well, eat it or ignore it!).

Re: rules question

PostPosted: 04 Jan 2014, 19:14
by StJuniper
I generally try to offer something from every food group with a meal, and then don't press the issue if P only eats one thing, but I wouldn't offer/agree to give him something other than what was served unless he was ill and specifically requesting something that made sense for him to need with his illness. So, for example, yesterday's dinner was rice, meatballs, and salad. He ate all the rice, most of a meatball, and a bite of cucumber when I told him to taste it. He can't get down without asking permission at the end of the meal-- we sit on bar stools so he needs help.

He's been nursing way more than usual since R arrived, though, so I don't expect him to eat much. I still believe he knows what he needs and as long as he tries most of what's on his plate I'm happy. Even if trying is just touching it to his tongue and then spitting it out.

Re: rules question

PostPosted: 04 Jan 2014, 19:16
by mamapup
I agree that touching to tongue is 'trying'. That's all I ask too although I'm lucky if a vegetable gets that far.

Re: rules question

PostPosted: 04 Jan 2014, 19:40
by ChristmasGift
I have a similar situation with lunches. Most of our standard rotation of dinners are deemed acceptable and if she's not sick/teething she'll eat them but some lunches barely get touched. I try not to let it bother me and don't say anything to her . Maybe that's easier as it's lunch and I know she'll be having dinner later.
FWIW - The Babs loves meatballs but doesn't much care for burgers either.

Re: rules question

PostPosted: 04 Jan 2014, 19:58
by madcatmummy
Great that he did eat some of it, that's brilliant!! Sometimes the mind of a toddler is far too complex to try and understand - the squashed meatball must be avoided = case in point!!

Re: rules question

PostPosted: 04 Jan 2014, 20:04
by catkin
That sounds like a success in the end! Perhaps he needs time to get his head round new foods?
We ask them to wait until everyone's finished their first course before bringing out fruit or yoghurt or whatever. But yes, would still offer them. And entertain reasonable requests e.g. if we were going to have fruit but they want yoghurt they can have it.
We ask mouse to try things, not really with hamster yet. And give teeny portions of anything they don't think they want. Basically though, put it on their plate and ignore what they do with it, clear the remainder if they're finished when we're finished. In fact, I ignore it so much I'm not sure what if anything hamster doesn't eat. I'm sure that's not so easy if they default to not liking things rather than defaulting to eating everything in sight!

Re: rules question

PostPosted: 04 Jan 2014, 20:05
by FestiveTidings
madcatmummy wrote:Great that he did eat some of it, that's brilliant!! Sometimes the mind of a toddler is far too complex to try and understand - the squashed meatball must be avoided = case in point!!


This.

I think it's the same principle that Roo applies to melon. Slices are his friend and he will eat and eat and eat. But take it away from the skin and dice it then it becomes the work of the dark side and must be avoided at all costs! Sandwiches must be open and the filling eaten first then the buttered bread. The list is endless. I blame his father. :)

If I hadn't seen him born I would swear he wasn't from this earth.

Re: rules question

PostPosted: 04 Jan 2014, 20:09
by mamapup
Thanks for making me laugh, guys.

Yes it was a success in the end, for.sure. But this parenting lark is a.minefield! Some days I feel the right thing is to always give fruit and yoghurt but other days, such as today, I feel it's wrong because they're firm favourites so a safety when he doesn't want to try.

Ever on and on! I know I shall look back on this in ten years when he's eating us out of house and home and laugh.

Re: rules question

PostPosted: 04 Jan 2014, 20:19
by babydsmummy
They do go through these phases. I'm 'stricter' with D now he is old enough to reason with - tonight we had chicken legs, potato gratin and broccoli. He didn't like the sauce in the potato gratin, which was fair enough and I was happy for him not to eat that - he tried it and didn't like it. He ate the broccoli but he then moaned that the sauce had touched the chicken and didn't want that and asked for pudding. I told him to wipe the worst of the sauce off and get on with it or there wouldn't be any pudding (which was only fruit/yoghurt). He did and all was fine. Pleased as I am that he likes broccoli, it isn't really a balanced meal! J on the other hand picked at the potato, chewed a bit of chicken then spat it out and that was it. He's back in a picky phase at the moment but there's no way I could reason with him about eating more. They both had yoghurt and melon for pudding.