In this brief discussion, we will answer the question “why do dogs eat so fast?” We will also talk about possible underlying health issues associated with fast eating among dogs and how to get a dog to eat slowly.
Why do dogs eat so fast?
The most commonly known reason why dogs eat so fast is their competitive nature which develops in them at a young age when they are around other pups.
Another reason may be that a dog feels threatened in some way which would mean that they have to finish their food faster for a better chance at survival.
It is also possible that a dog is eating faster due to underlying health issues. If a dog is eating faster than normal and is behaving differently, it is imperative to see a veterinarian and get a full check-up.
Do dogs eat fast because of health issues?
Yes, it is possible that a dog may be facing some health concerns and eating fast as a result. A dog might have parasites living inside the body and disrupting the digestion process. It is also possible that a dog has Cushing’s disease as increased appetite is one of its symptoms.
Cushing’s disease is a serious health condition that causes excess cortisol production in a dog’s body leading to life-threatening illnesses from kidney failure to diabetes. Look for other symptoms such as lethargy, excessive thirst, panting and frequent urination.
Do dogs eat fast because of nutrient deficiencies?
Yes, it is possible that a dog is eating faster because nutritional needs are not being met. Therefore, it is advised to look into what a dog is eating and the brand of dog food that is being used. Dogs eat fast if they are not getting the nutrients their body needs because they feel hungrier.
It is also possible that a dog is eating faster because of irregular meal timings. If a dog does not have a proper routine it may cause them to eat faster because they are unsure of when their next meal will be made available.
Is it dangerous for dogs to eat fast?
Yes, it can be dangerous. Eating faster may cause a dog to fall sick. A dog might start to experience vomiting and problems in food digestion. Moreover, if a dog swallows food fast without chewing it properly it is possible that the dog might choke.
It is also possible for a dog to experience bloat which results from swallowing a lot of air while eating fast and it can be very painful.
Gastric Dilatation-volvulus is another condition that might develop from eating large amounts of food very fast and causes twisting of a dog’s stomach requiring immediate attention.
Does a dog eat fast out of habit?
If a dog has been adopted from a shelter, it is possible that the dog is habitual of eating faster. One reason might be that the dog was not fed properly by the previous owners or had a number of other dogs around which increased competition.
It is also possible that a dog is eating fast out of habit if it formerly lived in the wild. It is time to start training a dog from scratch especially if it is a rescue.
Stray dogs are not tamed and they eat depending upon when they find food. Sometimes they starve for days. This might be why a dog feels hungry all the time.
How to get a dog to eat slowly?
Yes, there are different ways to train a dog to eat slowly and safeguard against life-threatening illnesses.
- Introduce multiple small meals in a dog’s routine instead of just 2 to 3 meals a day. The dog might still eat faster but this will prevent food bloat. You may gradually start to decrease the number of meals.
- Start hand feeding your dog and allow it to finish the meal over a couple of minutes. This may sound tiring but it is suitable for bonding with the dog and training it.
- Get a slow feeder for the dog. Slow feeders are pet bowls that have obstacles that force a dog to pick food in fewer quantities. You might have to try different feeders to find one that suits you best.
- You could also try a puzzle feeder. It is similar to a slow feeder, just not as boring. Let’s make mealtimes fun for a dog to encourage slow eating!
We answered the question “why do dogs eat so fast?” We also talked about possible underlying health issues associated with fast eating among dogs and how to get a dog to eat slowly.