How To Stop Your Dog Speed Eating.


We’ve all heard the phrase ‘wolfing it down’ –  to eat a large amount of food very quickly. – like a ravenous wolf! Unfortunately, this can be detrimental to a dog’s health. Bolting food can lead to upset tummies, gagging, choking, vomiting and in serious cases, gastric bloat – a condition that can be fatal. How do you stop your dog from speed-eating? Holidays4Dogs finds out…

The reason why some dogs eat too fast is down to a number of reasons. Dogs have far fewer taste buds than we do, which means they don’t tend to savour their food. Instead, they are inclined to eat simply to fill their bellies. In addition, eating fast is instinct for many dogs. Devouring food quickly means it cannot be stolen by other predators, or rivals.

Occasionally, eating a lot of food quickly can be a sign of a health condition. The presence of parasites, for instance, can cause dogs to have voracious appetites due to lack of nutrition. Similarly, thyroid or other hormonal conditions may cause an increase in appetite which makes the dog eat quickly. If you notice your dog changes his, or her, eating habits have changed, you should seek veterinary advice as soon as possible.

Once health conditions have been ruled out, there are few tips you can try to help to stop your dog speed eating.

Slow Feeder Dog Bowl

Slow-feeder bowls

These dog bowls are very useful for pooches who tend to eat too quickly. They are specially designed with soft ridges, or protrusions. This makes it harder for even the fastest eater to consume their food too quickly. Some designs are more complicated than others. For very quick eaters, choose one with more ridges.

You could make a D-I-Y slow feeder bowl. Use a bowl that is larger than needed. Place a few tennis balls in the bowl along with your dog’s meal. Your dog will have to move the tennis balls around to get the food.

Of course, you may have a very clever dog who will learn to remove the tennis balls – so this may not work long-term! You can also try placing a bowl, upside down in a larger bowl.

This creates a circular channel in which you place your dog’s food. This will make it more difficult for him to gulp his meal down in gigantic mouthfuls and reduce speed eating.

Food dispensing toys

Food dispensing toys, like Kongs, are also a good idea for fast eaters. It is worth trying to feed your dog very small amounts in one go, even if you are using an ordinary bowl. This way, the dog will not be gorging on so much volume of food at once and speed feeding can reduce.

You could also try hiding food around the house. This would work with dry, or wet food, as you could place it in small containers.

Use food as an opportunity for training games too. This will be more stimulating for him while, at the same time, preventing him from wolfing down his food in one sitting.

If you have more than one dog, try feeding each one separately in different rooms. Sometimes, dogs bolt food quickly because they are anxious about another dog stealing.

Watch your pack carefully, because it is not always obvious which dog is the culprit.  As well as encouraging dogs to gorge on their food too quickly, feeding dogs together can also lead to squabbles.

If your dog is the opposite of this and is a picky eater – take a look at our other Holidays4Dogs article on the subject. and 4Dogs are participants in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn commission fees by advertising and linking to the following websites. Read our full disclosure agreement here.