Does your dog devour food without savoring a single taste? Does your pup gulp down bowls of kibble like his or her life depended on it?
At VIP Petcare, our pet experts know how dangerous it can be if your dog eats too fast on a regular basis, but we are here to help! While all dogs vary in the way they consume their food during mealtime, dogs that rapidly inhale their food are prone to both serious medical conditions and choking. Thankfully, our team at VIP Petcare has put together a comprehensive guide on the dangers of your dog eating too fast, and how to get them to slow down
Why Is My Dog Eating Fast?
Diseases & Conditions
Certain diseases and conditions – such as diabetes mellitus, Cushing’s Disease, or intestinal parasites – can cause a dog to eat too fast; so it’s important to schedule regular health screenings with your pet care experts here at VIP Petcare. Additionally, certain prescribed medications can have symptoms that increase a dog’s appetite.
Food With Little Nutrition
Feeding your dog the right kind of food will ensure their hunger pains are taken care of on a daily basis. If you’re giving your dog kibble that’s low in the proper nutritional values for their age and size, it could leave them with growling stomachs and an unsatisfied feeling. Make sure to consult with one of our pet experts on the best type of food for your dog’s breed, size, and age.
Competition With Littermates
As a puppy, your dog may have had to compete with his or her littermates for food. If this happened to be the case, your pup would’ve learned to chow down his or her food as quickly as possible to ensure that no other puppy could steal it! Competition during meal time can be a hard habit to break, as many dogs will carry over this eating pattern well into adulthood.
What Could Happen If My Dog is Eating Fast?
First and foremost, dogs that eat too fast can choke or gag on their food. As most dogs who chomp their food don’t fully chew each morsel of kibble, whole pieces can become lodged within their throats, blocking air flow and causing pain. While dogs are gulping down their meal, they are also pulling in a large amount of air into their stomachs. This air, combined with half-chewed food, will expand inside the walls of the stomach, causing bloating and/or vomiting. If a dog continuously gulps air while eating, it could cause Gastric Dilatation-Volvulus – otherwise known as GDV or “Bloat.” GDV can be life-threatening, as it can cause the stomach to twist or even rupture, sending a dog into shock and possibly cardiac arrest.
How Can I Slow Down My Dog’s Fast Eating Habits?
In order to start slowing down your dog’s eating habits, it’s important to rule out any underlying conditions or diseases that may be causing an increased appetite. Once you know your dog is in the clear, you can slowly begin to change the way they eat their food with a few simple tips and tricks. First off, if your dog is rapidly eating due to experiencing litter competition as a puppy, you can try to feed him or her separately from any other pets you may have. Giving an anxious dog individual space to peacefully eat will help them feel less stressed and more at ease.
If your dog is the only pet in your household and he or she still inhales food, you can try to split up meals throughout the day. Instead of feeding your dog one big meal, try to feed him or her small portions for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, allowing them to feel more satisfied and less hungry. Additionally, you can utilize slow feeder dog food bowls or cognitive food puzzles to only allow small portions of kibble to be accessible at one time. By placing an obstacle between your dog and their food, you can slow down the speed at which they consume their meal while giving them a cognitive challenge.
Contact VIP Petcare For State-Of-The-Art Petcare Services & Preventatives!
At VIP Petcare, it’s our mission to ensure that your pet’s health is in tip-top shape! Our pet care experts specialize in a broad spectrum of world-class pet care vaccinations and preventatives needed by every household dog, and also general wellness for all of your pets! With VIP Petcare, it’s easier than ever to maintain your best friend’s health with our mobile pet care clinics all across the country; giving more people access to pet care services than ever before
Here at VIP Petcare, we accept walk-ins during our days of operation at each of our pet care clinics. If your dog is eating too fast and in need of a health check and/or vaccinations, don’t hesitate to find a VIP Petcare clinic near you!