- Is your dog a chowhound, bolting down his food faster than you can say “here’s your dinner”?
- Are you delighted to see that they didn’t choke this mealtime?
- Do you worry you didn’t give them enough when the meal is over in 10secs flat and they look at you like they are starving?
- Does your dog leave his food leaving you to think there’s something wrong?
- Does your dog show signs of boredom and exhibit problem behaviours?
- Does your dog gulp down his food only to spew it back up?
If yes, then I suggest a slow feeder may help and perhaps even eliminate some of these issues altogether. They are certainly not just another gimmick of pet suppliers to help you part with your money. Let’s look at the reasons why.
All dogs for their health should slow ingestion of food just the same as humans. Can you remember your mum always telling you to slow down and chew more, well she was right! All dogs need to slow their eating for good health and avoidance of flatulence and bloat. Large breeds are even more susceptible to bloat (GDV, gastric dilation) which occurs when the dog eats too quickly and swallows a lot of air (aerophagia) as well as food. The air goes into the stomach and can put pressure on the heart, lungs and organs. It can even twist the stomach, pinching blood vessels. The condition can be fatal.
A slow bowl slows down the ingestion of food so that the dog swallows less air. Some dogs also eat so fast that they very quickly spew it back-up, a slow feeder can eliminate this entirely.
In the wild, a dog has to work for his food but we often just hand our pooches their meals and don’t often think about how we could be making dinner time an event that benefits our dogs’ minds not just their bodies.
Thinking problems through is very beneficial to our dogs. Dinner-time becomes a brain game and helps with boredom issues. Working out how to get your dinner out of the nooks and crevices of a slow feeder is actually mentally stimulating for your dog. It can reduce problem behaviours like barking and chewing. Also, your dog is less likely to overeat because it gives the brain a chance to recognise it’s a meal rather than a treat or snack.
Another great idea is to have more than one design of slow feeder. By changing up the design of the bowl your pooch has to apply different techniques to their meal-time pattern and it creates that stimulation of problem-solving all over again.
Slow bowls can even help the dogs that seem disinterested in their food. It may be the whole experience is lacking something for them. Try one and see if it works.
Here at Pet Crew, we have sourced the best slow bowls. We love the Outward Hound Fun Feeders because they have great sizes, colours and maze shapes available, they are BPA free and non-toxic. Check them out at our store. Outward Hound Fun Feeder