Slow Feeder Suggestion?
My little boy has a gobbling problem.
One day (this was a little while ago), he gobbled his food down so fast that he vomited it up and it was all whole chunks of kibble. He didn't chew any of it at all. So, we got him a gobble stopper.
And that helped .. for a little while. Then, he started wolfing down his food again despite the little doodad in the middle. So, this past weekend, I invested in what was supposed to be a slow feeder.
But he's still managing to eat pretty quickly (albeit slower than when he just had a regular bowl) for the amount of food I'm giving him. And I'm pretty sure he's still not chewing a majority of it. So, does anyone have a suggestion for a good slow or puzzle feeder? I've looked on Amazon and found a ton, but would like input from you all before I buy anything else. :) Thanks!
I have used different slow feeder bowls and still do use one that works good for us (Outward Hound Fun Feeder Slow Feed Interactive Bloat Stop Dog Bowl) , but the one thing that works best for my vacuum eater is a 12 cup cupcake tin. It is an old heavy one and it really slows him down.
I also have the big black kongs that I put his food in then plug the end with peanut butter and add water to freeze. I love those because it takes him a long time to finish!
In addition, I have food feeders, I call them toys, I love them but my husband hates them because it is LOUD and wild when Shady uses them!
My favorite is The KONG Wobbler Treat Dispensing Dog Toy. I add a rubber ball inside this one to slow down the food getting out so it takes even longer. Hope some of this helps!:nerd:
I've always let my boys "Wolf". They eventually figure out that it is totally unnecessary. (if they are fed alone and undisturbed by other dogs.) However lots of folks are really uncomfortable dealing with it.
So.. a really cheap and pretty effective tool is a your basic baking sheet (pan). You know, about 18"x12" with slightly raised edges. One layer of kibble spread out. Some folks also swear by a muffin tin.
But back to my dog: McCoy eats 1 3/4 cups of kibble per feeding plus all the other stuff I add... He chows it down in seconds. Oh well. I limit his water and exercise before and after feeding. No issues to date.
As his sire died of torsion, I have studied up on the signs and symptoms of bloat and torsion, which would be my major concern. His vet is a call and 5 minutes away 24/7. It's nice when your vet comes over for Christmas and Thanksgiving. LOL He can't say no!
Really. IMO, don't sweat it.
Best to you
We used a cup cake cooking tray, for a few months.
- Kelly did slow down eating, to normal speed
Dogs don't really chew kibble very much--it generally goes down whole. Their teeth are made for biting and shearing, not for grinding things into a pulp like our teeth do. We have digestive fluids in our saliva. A dog doesn't; his food doesn't start to digest until it reaches his stomach.
A cupcake tray with a little food in each cup, or a cookie sheet with the kibble spread in a single layer would be the cheapest way to go, if you want him to slow down.
If you are really worried about it, try using a muffin pan. Much cheaper than a slow feeder bowl, and somewhat entertaining the first few times. You will probably get a look that says "ugh. seriously?" If you have a bowl stomper/flipper though, I would also get some kind of mat and some velcro/magnet tape to keep the pan from flipping. That works for us. Radar eats like he's never seen food.
This is the one we use for Mocha and it works pretty good. Cleaning it is a PITA, but no more vomiting after eating, so it's worth it.
I you really want to slow him down, then you need something that dispenses just a few kibbles at a time, like a Kong Wobbler. https://www.chewy.com/kong-wobbler-d...large/dp/44195
For my previous boy I put a couple of baseball size round rocks in his bowl. Worked perfectly...and free!
I find just wetting my dogs food down helps. I don't mind that they eat quickly, but that prevents them from eating so quickly they puke.
They do enjoy their Kong Wobblers a LOT - it's their most fun food toy ever. I've used slow feeders, but I don't love them. The food toys are better, IMO. Or frozen Kongs. I don't mind fast eating as long as it doesn't lead to puking, and for us, just wetting the food is enough to prevent that - I just make it a little soupy.
Good advice from posters above. :nicejob:
Both our Dobes use stainless Brake-Fast bowls but they can still wolf down kibble in about 5-minutes!
I recently purchased two Ruffwear Gnawt-A-Rocks via Amazon.
Although I put jerky treats inside to keep Dobes engaged for hours, they can also be used for slow feeding purposes.
I tried once with large sized kibble and it took a good 10 minutes for Dobes to dispense and eat a handful.
Here is my previous post on these items:
I also use the Outward Hound bowls, I have the purple and the teal. My dogs like them, it slows them down, and they don't chew the bowls. My Doberman would chew some of the other plastic slow feeder bowls and attachments, or pull them out of the bowls, and/or just flip them over. But both dogs play nice with the Outward Hound ones.
I don't care if my dogs eat fast. Frankly I don't even care if a puppy eats so fast that he pukes it back up--I just let him eat it again which he's thrilled to do.
Like 4x4 bike (John) I always wet the food down--it slows the dog down a little and makes the kibble slide down a little more easily. I really, really don't want to mess with the eating process much because after years and years of male conformation dogs you can almost count on them going into a "I don't want to eat..." spell just about the time they hit puberty--hormones often leave an intact adolescent puppy much more interested in anything other than food. And inevitably all the disinterest in food shows up just about the time the dog is starting to be competitive. I've definitely found that the less fuss I make about food the more likely the dog is to eat quickly and eat it all.
As Melbrod said--dogs don't really chew their food--one look at the mouth of an ordinary dog will tell you that they don't have the right kind of teeth to chew it. They are pretty much designed to tear off bites an gulp it down--and in the wild canid that is good survival practice. Ditto for the point about saliva in the canid not being step one in digestion which does start in the stomach.
So on average--one on of my adult Dobes eats about 2 cups of kibble twice a day--a little less in the summer an a little more in the winter and I rely on looking at my dog all the time to see if his weight is right--I try to actually weigh growing dogs at least once a month and most vet clinics will have a scale in the waiting room and will let you weigh your dog (even if they aren't your vet) if you ask.
I've never actually had to make one of my puppies eat from a special bowl to slow them down. I did resort to a cookie sheet for a puppy I was growing out for a breeder who came to me at 11 weeks and was, at that time, still eating with a litter sister and a litter brother--he ate like a demented dog--so for the first 10 days I had him he got his food dry on a cookie sheet. I feed my dogs separately so that they don't feel they have to compete with another dog (or in my case another cat--there is one who is restricted to the bathroom when I feed the dogs because he'll try to eat their kibble and will, if allowed to, push them out of their own dish).
If any of my dogs take more than about 3 minutes eating a meal I start watching them to make sure they are well and not in pain from something going on physically.
I don't use treat feeders or treat toys but that's just me--they work well for some dogs but I nearly always have multiple dogs and don't want them with dispensing toys as it means I'd have to separate them to allow one dog access to something like that.
And I feed all puppies in a crate--I find that it focuses them on what they should be doing and they can't accidently wander off--they have 15 minutes to clean up their food and if they don't eat it in that length of time that's all they get until the next regularly scheduled meal.
LOL.. Just for the heck of it I timed McCoy's evening feeding.
It was simple. Just 1 3/4 cups of acana pork and squash kibble and a couple of tablespoons of Newmans Organic canned food.
He spends more time when I really mix it up. Kind of goes for the "interesting" stuff first and finally resigns himself to what left (kibble). I don't think that he has ever vomited after eating unless I allow him to drink copious amounts of water either before or after eats. And that has been a couple of years, once I got with the program.
Well... All dogs are different. I've been lucky over the years. Never had a picky eater and never had a dog with a delicate GI tract. (Knock on wood).
Like dobebug mentioned up above, if my dogs ever eschew food when put down, it has always been a signal for me to put a close eye on them and give them the careful once over to look for symptoms of an ailment.
After reading everyone's posts, I think I'll skip on buying a fancy bowl or toy to slow him down. As long as it's not an unnatural thing for him to eat as fast as he's eating (wow, 58 seconds @4x4bike ped ?! lol Chompchompchomp!) I'm not going to worry. He hasn't shown any sign of having any abnormal reaction to feeding the way he does. I may try the muffin pan thing, though his regular dog bowl (the blue one above) usually ends up ten feet away from the placemat it started on, so I can only imagine the skidding situation with a metal pan!
For now, we'll stick with what he's used to. Thanks again for all of the helpful information everyone! :) Y'all are awesome!
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