Dogs have the tendency to eat really fast, and this poses a very serious threat as this may lead to a variety of problems, including choking and serious digestive disorders which brings about instant death to your dogs, such as a twisted stomach commonly known as bloat. Here are some tips that can help you make your dogs eat in a normal or slower pace.
Get a special dog bowl. The use of these specially designed food bowls such as LifeBowls and Brake-Fast is the most popular and highly recommended option even by veterinarians worldwide. The obstructions built inside these bowls make your dogs eat slower because they would have to pick and choose their food while working around the bowl. It also minimizes gulping and excessive air intake which are common causes of bloat.
Put rocks in the bowl. Before LifeBowls and other slow feeding dog bowls came about, pet owners and trainers put rocks in their dogs’ food bowls to slow down their eating pace. If you have yet to purchase a LifeBowl for your dog, you may want to adapt this idea.
Put a clean rock in the bowl together with the dog food. You may put in more rocks depending on the size of the bowl.
- Make sure to put rocks bigger than your pet’s mouth to prevent them from accidentally choking on it.
- Make sure to give them the usual amount of food they consume in each meal. Refill the bowl if necessary.
Use a muffin tin. Another ingenious idea established by some dog owners is the use of muffin tins. The food is divided into the muffin tin’s six individual molds. Your dog’s usual rapid food intake is slowed down as it has to work its way around the muffin tin to consume and lick clean all its portions.
Play with the treat ball. Dogs love to play especially when they get fed after performing well. This is also another way of slow feeding your dog while the two of you are having fun.
Hand feed your dog. This is probably the most common and obvious way to help your dogs eat slower. Place the food in the palm of your hand or feed them one kibble at a time. Some owners leave a trail of kibbles on the floor so the dog will have to consume small batches of kibbles along the way.
Spread those cookie sheets. Spreading out dog food across the floor might be a bit messy so cookie sheets are recommended if you choose to try this option. Spread cookie sheets across the floor and place the dog food all over it. This slows down your dog’s feeding because it has to work its way around to finish everything. It also provides you with a more convenient way of cleaning up the mess afterwards.
Remember to not feed your dogs when they are too excited. You would notice that they tend to gulp all their food down in just three or four swallows. Bring your pet dogs to their Veterinarians for regular check ups especially when you notice disturbances in their eating habits and their behavior. They need the proper care and attention as much as, we, humans do.