This section is from the book "A Manual Of Toy Dogs: How To Breed, Rear, And Feed Them", by Leslie Williams. Also available from Amazon: A Manual Of Toy Dogs: How To Breed, Rear And Feed Them.
Want of appetite for no particular reason, except general debility of the stomach, is the annoying characteristic of the kennel - man's horror - the "bad doer," who is characterised by thinness and bad coat. Here and there we find a thin little dog that nothing will fatten; hardly ever hungry, and dainty to the distraction of his owner; a dog who will not eat in a strange place or from an unusual plate, and who only grows the thinner and more miserable for what he does eat. He is an unenviable possession, but we must make the best of him, coax him with small and frequent meals, for he will often accept a teaspoonful of raw meat minced, or a tablespoonful of cream, where he would not even look at an ordinary dog's meal, and get him up as well as we can for show with a daily new-laid egg, beaten up in a very little milk, and that useful and valuable dog-owner's aid, cod liver oil and malt. Most dogs will take this with a little tempting meat to help it down. Of course it must not be pushed at first, but given, to begin with, in very small doses, and gradually increased until our usefully typical 6 lb. dog is taking a full teaspoonful twice a day. It is a wonderful hair producer.
Cod liver oil alone, without the malt, is of much less use, and cheap preparations of either or both are to be sternly avoided; in the nature of things, such a medicine cannot be cheap, if it is to be thoroughly good. And here, I may remark, that because we are only dealing with a dog is no reason why we should put cheap drugs of any kind into him. His system is just as beautiful and delicate in its balance as that of a human being, though his teeth and his digestion may be stronger - such is not invariably the case by any means - and the administration of impure or adulterated medicine is just as great a cruelty to it as to the human machinery. To give a toy dog crude cod liver oil, imperfectly purified, because it is cheap, is like expecting to do fine carving upon oak with a hatchet, because it is oak and not satin-wood.