Dog Eating Habits: What to Watch Out For
How and what your dog eats has a huge effect on their wellbeing. It’s one of the things you should really keep an eye on if you want to make sure your dog is healthy and happy, so today we’re taking a look at some of the eating habits of our canine companions, so you know what to look out for.
If you’re regularly dealing with vomiting and diarrhea, dog’s eating habits may be to blame and it’s time to start paying closer attention!
Eating Too Quickly
If your dog regularly bolts their food, then you may find you have to clear up after bouts of vomiting immediately after meals. Throwing up undigested food is often caused by your dog eating too much, too quickly, so if your dog is a fast eater, you’re going to have to find some ways to slow them down!
Buying a bigger bowl – or even using a baking tray – to spread the food out and compact it down over a wider area will help to make your dog work harder for each mouthful. If you’re feeding them dry food, then try putting a tennis ball in the bowl – navigating around this adds some mental stimulation and slows down the pace of consumption.
It might also be worth investing in some feeding toys, whether they’re Kong style rubber toys you can stuff with peanut butter or biscuit dispensers that make your dog work for a snack! If you have a food oriented dog this can provide some much needed enrichment and stimulation for them.
Leaving Food in the Bowl
If your dog regularly fails to finish meals and leaves food in the bowl, then it might simply not be hungry. It might be a sign someone else has been feeding THEM during the day or they’ve found an illicit source of snacks somewhere. If your dog cleans its plate in the morning (when it hasn’t had a chance to eat overnight) but leaves food later in the day, then this is the likely explanation.
If your dog struggles to finish all their meals, first check you’re offering an appropriate serving for their age and size. If you’re overfeeding them, they might just be a sensible eater!
If they’re leaving even modest portions then there might be a problem. A lack of appetite might mean dental problems, as pain in their mouths makes it hard for dogs to eat. It could also indicate an injury or infection in the mouth or throat. If your dog is losing their appetite, or seems to be in discomfort while eating, it’s well worth taking them to the vet to be checked out.