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My Dog Eats Too Fast. 3 Easy Ways To Help Your Dog To Eat Slower

If you have a dog that eats too fast, don’t worry, you’re not alone.

I have a Newfoundland that swallows his food whole and another Newfoundland that takes his time and savors each piece of kibble in his bowl.

The one that eats his food so fast stresses me out so I’ve spent a lot of time finding ways to get him to eat his food slower because I know that it can be a dangerous habit for him to continue with. 

eating fast can lead a dog to vomit, gag, choke and even bloat

Why Do Some Dogs Eat Their Food Fast?

Some dogs just get really excited to eat so they eat fast. 

Other dogs may be competing with another dog in the house because they feel threatened that the other dog will steal their food. 

Lack of training can be another reason why a dog will eat too fast. 

This is seen often in rescue dogs or dogs that have been abused. 

Underlying medical issues such as Cushing’s Disease, diabetes, hypothyroidism, intestinal parasites can also cause a dog to feel excessively hungry.

Is It Bad For A Dog To Eat Fast?

If a dog is eating its food super fast and swallowing it whole, it can be bad. 

Dogs that eat their food too fast can choke if the food gets lodged in their throat leading to a medical emergency. 

Speed eaters are also more prone to gagging and vomiting their food up soon after they eat. 

When a dog eats too fast often they are also allowing a lot of air into their stomachs. 

This can lead to a dangerous condition called dog bloat or GDV. 

Bloat is when the dog’s stomach expands due to too much air and GDV is when the stomach twists. 

GDV is a life-threatening condition that requires immediate medical attention. 

Symptoms That A Dog Is Eating Too Fast

A dog that eats too fast may show signs and symptoms such as gagging during and after they eat, choking and vomiting. 

If your dog is eating too fast and throwing up

When a puppy east too fast it will often get hiccups or vomit.

Puppies will usually outgrow the hiccups around 8 months of age.

However, they should be taught early on to eat slowly and not gulp their food down to avoid medical issues in the future. 

How To Get Your Dog To Eat Slower

If you have a dog that east too fast, don’t be too concerned, many dogs are fast eaters and there are some easy ways that you can help slow them down. 

Feed multiple meals.

Most veterinarians recommend that dogs be fed two meals a day, especially big dogs that are at high risk for gastric dilation (dog bloat).

Spreading out meals throughout the day might make your dog feel more satisfied.

if your dog eats too fast you can help to slow them down by buying a slow feeder bowl or making your own

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Split the meal.

Instead of putting all your dog’s food in one bowl, split it up between 2 bowls. 

This way, hopefully, your dog will take a little breather when they finish one bowl and move onto the next. 

Mix it up.

Adding food such as canned pumpkin, frozen green beans or boiled chicken to dry dog food not only gives them added nutrients but can also help them eat slower.

Spread it out.

If you feed your dog kibble, spreading that out on a cookie sheet will cause them to have to grab each piece one at a time and therefore he will eat slower.

Hand Feed

The last option would be to hand feed your dog their meal, this obviously will work best if you feed your dog kibble and would not be recommended for dogs that eat a raw diet unless you are wearing protective gloves. 

Bowls For A Dog That Eats Too Fast

Meal dispensing toys and puzzles seem to be all the rage these days and many people use them to feed their dog meals.

These tools make the dog work for their food and slow them down from eating too much at once because the treat dispensing balls and puzzles only release a few pieces of kibble at once.

Products such as these may also help dogs that swallow their food without chewing it first. 

DIY Slow Feeder Bowls

You can easily make your own slow feeder bowl by adding an obstacle to your dog’s feeding bowl. 

An object can be a baseball or two and your dog will have to eat around that object.

Add and obstacle to your dog's bowl so they have to eat around it

 

You can also big rocks-unless you have a dog like me that used to eat rocks!

Adding a smaller bowl on top of your dog’s regular bowl will also work. 

Muffin tins.

Yep. Muffin tins are perfect tools to slow dogs down.

Fill each tin up with some kibble and let them have at it! This might not work well for dogs with wide muzzles, such as the Newfoundland. 

Flip it. An easy way to make a stainless bowl into a DIY slow feeder. 

Dog Hack: If you want to slow down your dog's eating, flip over their non-slip dog bowl and put the food in the ring

For a dog that eats too fast, flip over a non-tip water or food bowl and spread the food around the center ring.

The dog will have to move around to get around the bowl slowing him down quite a bit!

This is the way that has worked the best for us and it was easy!

weighted dog bowl flipped over

 

 

 

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