Why Do Dogs Eat So Fast - Reasons & How to Slow Down
It is no doubt that dogs love to eat. Whether your dog is a puppy, a young dog, a middle-aged dog or a senior dog, he may enjoy the food faster than he should be ingesting it.
Why dogs eat so fast? The main reasons of dogs eating too fast are:
- Competition with other animals in the house for food
- The particular food may be of higher value than the usual offered
- The dog may be suffering from an underlying illness or nutritional deficiency, which may cause him to be excessively hungry
However, eating too fast can lead to health problems which should be a big cause for concern. If your dog eats too fast, he can easily choke, gag and vomit. He can even develop a life threatening condition bloat. If you find it a medical reason, take your dog to the vet immediately.
If there’s no medical reason for your dog's eating habits, what can you do to slow your dog down at meal time? Below are some practical tips:
(1)Buy a slow feeder bowl
Slow feeder bowls usually have built-in obstacles specifically designed to slow your dog’s eating. This kind of bowls come in different shapes and sizes. You can purchase them in local stores or online. You can also make your own by placing a small object in the dog bowl. Try putting a tennis ball or other dog toys inside your dog’s bowl. It you place a obstruction between your dog and the food, he will have no choice but to slow down and eat around it.
(2)Get on a feeding schedule
To slow down your dog’s eating, you can reduce the amount of food your dog can access during a single feeding, and feed multiple small meals rather than a single large meal. A timed automatic dog feeder can help you achieve this, as it can dispense food on any schedule you’d like. Many smart feeder can be controlled and programmed with your phone to adjust and schedule portion size.
(3)Separate your dogs during mealtimes
If you have multiple dogs, you’d better separate your dog during mealtimes. This is because they may view mealtime as a competition. Even if your pup is an only dog in your house, he may view other members of the household, including cats and people, as competition. To prevent your dog(s) from wolfing down the food as a contest, try feeding your dog(s) in separate rooms.
(4)Make mealtime fun
Consider serving your dog’s food inside a food-dispensing dog toy that only releases a few pieces of kibble at a time. Get a puzzle toy that your dog has to play with to get the dog treats out. It could also stimulate your dog’s brain and help provide your dog with some needed activity.
You can also make your own version. For example, place a muffin tin upside down and pouring their food in between the muffin molds, so your dog have to get it out. This same method can also be applied to a box - cut some holes in it to allow food to fall out. You can make the mealtime as creative as you can image.
(5)Add water to wet food
You can also water down your dog’s food. If you feed your dog wet food, consider watering it down. Your dog will have to drink the water to get to the food, which could slow down the eating process and also encourage your dog to eat more water.