Tips for Slowing a Speed Demon - Speed eating and gulping.

Discuss ways to improve the quality of your dog's life and longevity through proper nutrition; a place for all of your questions and answers about feeding your pooch!

Please keep discussions fun, friendly, and helpful at all times. Non-informative posts criticizing a particular brand or another poster’s choice of food are not allowed in this Forum. References to any brand of food as "junk," "garbage," or other harsh names will be removed.

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Miss Black- Magic's 'Ria'
Barked: Mon Apr 1, '13 11:20pm PST 
Ria is starting to concern me with how fast she eats her food. She's always been this way, but so far, the things I've done to curb it is place a smaller dish upside down in her current dish(still doesn't slow her down or make her chew!), and hand feeding(sooo time consuming, isn't it?). I'm honestly getting a little lost for what else I can do. Stuff a Kong maybe? I dunno. If I put food in a puzzle toy, she sits impatiently, and waits for me to give it to her and won't try to work it out! She lacks patience... A lot. I've even tried showing her, and Charlie's done puzzle toys with her enough that you'd think she'd get the gist that moving this gets you that, but nope.

She's getting gassy(likely from gulping her food), and you can see her stomach TENSE up visibly when/after she eats. I'm terrified she's going to cause herself to bloat.

She's just under a year, she's fit, she's healthy otherwise, she's about 30 lbs and TINY, and she's Lab/Borer Collie. I am aware that this tends to be a common problem in Labs..

So... Any tips on how to curb the speed eating and gulping?

She won't even TRY with a puzzle toy. Just sits and waits expectantly for you to tell her to do something to get the food.

Hand feeding can be time consuming and messy, but I'll keep doing it if I have to..

Smaller multiple meals hasn't worked.

The smaller dish upside down in her dish doesn't work(maybe it's not big enough?), as it doesn't slow her down, or stop her from gulping instead of chewing.

I've also held the dish at an elevated height to force her to slow down, but this doesn't help with encouraging chewing either, and is also time consuming.

Her and Charlie are both on Acana dog food when I can't afford raw, which, up until our paychecks at my fiance's new job even out, we'll be stuck on Acana.

Any tips on what to do and how to get her to CHEW her food and take it slower? She eats like she's been starved for a year! I've never had a dog that was SO crazy for food. If it was raw, it'd be easy, cause I'd feed her the food frozen, bol. Harder to do with plain dog food and healthy canned food is expensive.

Tall,Dark, and,- Handsome
Barked: Tue Apr 2, '13 1:14am PST 
I tried the smaller dish inside the larger one and it was not working with Chewy at all.

Have you tried adding water to her food? I give Chewy 1.5 cups of kibble and add another half of a cup of water to his food and it has slowed his eating down a lot. If I were to add more water he'd eat even slower.

I've read on a a Great Dane website to add water to the food because it will keep them from drinking a lot of water after they eat, which can cause bloat. So I started doing that, and it slowed down his eating as a bonus.

I've also used a treat ball. It's a good size so I can fit a whole cup of food in there and he just rolls it around and has to take his time.

Barked: Tue Apr 2, '13 5:49am PST 
What kind of puzzle toys have you tried? Is there an easier one she might have the patience for? What about kibble in a milk jug with a large hole cut in it, for example.

What if you sprinkled the kibble on the floor over a large area, and kept Charlie away, so she had to at least move around a little bit while eating?


Bonzaiiiiiiii!!!- !!!
Barked: Tue Apr 2, '13 6:43am PST 
Puzzle toys don't work for Terra. She just gets so excited that it makes her gulping worse. When I'm feeding kibble, she gets enough water in her food until it floats and I let it soak for a couple of minutes. I've also found that if I use warm water it slows her down even more. She no longer burps after eating. We've been doing this for a while now with success.

As to chewing. Most dogs don't chew institutionally (at least in my experience). You see this behavior a lot in raw fed dogs. They tend to swallow thing whole, and if you're lucky, they'll crunch down on it a couple of times to break up the bones, but no actual mastication is happening.

Give the water a go. It helps to slow them down, AND soften up the kibble which is to your benefit in the off chance your pup eats a little too quickly and chokes a bit, the food is nice and 'disintigraty'.
Pamela - - - Adopted!!!!

Slave to food!
Barked: Tue Apr 2, '13 7:54am PST 
I've had this problem with a couple of Foster dogs. Some experimentation yeilded a decent solution, slowing the eating time from 20 seconds, to over 2.5 minutes. Still seems fast, but is comparably, a leisurely meal.

I found a ceramic muffin pan in a local TJ Maxx, filled each well with sticky, ground canned and dry food and water. The dogs seem to grab some from each well, then go back over it a couple of times to empty each well of food, and finally licking the thing clean.

You may have to play around to see what works for your dog.
Let us know...
Jake & Sweet- Caroline

Tricolored- Hounds for life!
Barked: Tue Apr 2, '13 8:21am PST 
Jake has this problem when it comes to dog food. I have a slow feeder bowl for when he has to eat kibble. it has deep wells in it kind of like someone else's muffin pan idea. I tend to stick peanut butter or wet food into the wells then smash his kibble into it. Or he gets a feeder toy.

Hint for the feeder toys. Give when not hungry so they will play with it. Jake's wobble kong was originally filled with dog treats and not kibble and I had to show him that tipping it over made stuff come out. Then the next morning he got kibble in it which i again tipped over to show him it came out. The rest is history. He loves that stuipid toy.

I have also used the busy buddy rope in teh bottle toy. It requires jake to tip the bottles then pull the rope and soem other stuff to get the kibble to come out. IT also doubles as a fetch toy! It's the only way Jake and i can play fetch!!

OR if you want to go a cheaper route. Stuff a kong with wet and dry food and let her at it.

I did hand feeding for a while with Jake because he would eat so fast he'd vomit when i first got him. very very gross.frown

If you look around you can get slow feeder bowls for nothing. My Unleashed store was having a clearance sale and these funky looking slow feeder bowls were only $5 instead of $25.

Those are all the options I can think up right now. Will let you know if anythign else comes to me.
Shiver Me- Timbers- "Charlie"

My Little Dog, a- heartbeat at my- feet.<3
Barked: Tue Apr 2, '13 11:54am PST 
I haven't tried a regular jug with a hole in it yet.

I've tried several commercial toys and she's so impatient and thinks you want something from her. I've tried repeatedly showing her how it's done, when she's hungry and when she's not, with both kibble and treats and she just sits and waits for it to be given to her.

I haven't tried the food floating in water and may give that a go as well.

I did have a tug-a-jug busy buddy toy, but she broke it. Shredded the rubber at the top, and snapped the plastic bottle. She's a destroyer of all things not Kong.

I realize they don't really chew, but my huge concern was how quick she was swallowing mass amounts of food all at once. She causes herself so much discomfort with the way she eats her food.

I always feed the dogs separately, so keeping Charlie away has never been an issue and he's never been interested in being in the same room as Ria when she's eating. He's more interested in standing over his dish and waiting for her to finish and come investigate his before he even eats, bol. I typically feed Ria in the kitchen and Charlie in the living room(NOT an open concept house either) and I do this primarily because I got in the habit of it with foster dogs who were food aggressive.

A lot of awesome suggestions - thanks so much guys! I think today, I'm going to freeze her meal in the Kong and let her work at that slower. I'll keep trying to find what helps with the gulping and speed eating.
Jewel, PCD

8.6lbs of fury- in a bow!
Barked: Tue Apr 2, '13 12:00pm PST 
I had a foster that came in starving and was crazy about food. I used a plastic dish, smeared canned food on the bottom and then put the kibble on top and froze it. Ha, the look on her face was great. She had to lick the kibble free, she was still eating fast when she got adopted but not as bad after a few days of frozen meals.

It ain't over- till the fat- kitty sings
Barked: Tue Apr 2, '13 1:43pm PST 
Jewel's idea a good one, never though of freezing stuff. I would suggest one of the bowls like from the Dr Foster catalog that's made to slow 'em down. I'm considering ordering one for Callie too. He can finish what takes Sophie ten minutes to eat in four bites...and besides the fear of bloat, his gastric fortitude is so bad it's hard to lay next to him sometimes. good luck

Ice cubes? YES- PLEASE!
Barked: Tue Apr 2, '13 2:39pm PST 
Clyde went through a food-vacuuming phase. It was quite scary because I could feel his tummy getting tight after inhaling a meal on some days. We would just place heavy rocks too big for him to swallow in the bowl with the kibble, so he had to eat around and under them to get the goods. That got him to slow down to a safe speed in a few months.
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