Dogs love their food... There's no doubt in my, Toby's or your mind about it! But some dogs (Including the Terrible Toby) might love it a bit too much. While it's perfect for training, it's not so great when it comes to F-O-O-D time. That's why the Slow Feeder was invented. With dogs literally trying to inhale their food, slow feeders were made to prevent this. Why? Let me explain below...
Preventing Bloat! Bloat, also known as gastric dilatation-volvulus (GDV) complex (let's avoid the fancy words and call it bloat though) is a medical and surgical emergency. It's caused by dogs swallowing air as they eat too quickly...
As the stomach fills with air, blood is prevented from returning to the heart. This causes the dog to go into shock.
If this isn’t scary enough, there is yet another horrifying thing that happens, and it is heartbreaking to see. The stomach can flip during this, cutting off blood & oxygen to other areas of the body. The oxygen-starved pancreas produces some very toxic hormones. One, in particular, targets the heart and stops it cold. In fact, a dog can go through successful treatment for bloat and seem to be out of danger, when suddenly the heart stops.
Even in the mildest case of bloat dogs can pass away without treatment. This is the number one reason why slow feeders were created and are growing in popularity so quickly. This is also the cause of death in the beloved movie Marley & Me.
I'm not here to try and scare you or have you go double check your dogs eating habits every meal time... But, if you notice your dog could be winning some eating contests it might be time to consider one.
Toby uses a slow feeder at every meal to ensure he eats at the proper speed. I'm not too sure if he's the biggest fan of it... But, it definitely gives me some piece of mind even if he doesn't actually need it.
Looking to pickup a slow feeder of your own? Toby's got the same model he uses on sale now! Be sure to pick one up for your dog if you're worried about their eating speed.