Quick question......how long does it take for your dog to finish their food? Most dogs seem to suck in the food and it hardly touches the sides as it goes down! Dogs love to eat and they have a tendency to devour everything set in front of them as if it were the last thing they would ever eat. If your dog eats too quickly, it can be dangerous. What can be done about it?
Puppies that are born in large litters learn that the only way they are going to get their fair share of food is if they scoff it down before another puppy can get to it. Even after growing up and being separated from his littermates, it is common for a dog to continue to eat very quickly out of habit. This is more likely to be a problem in multi-dog households, but not exclusively.
One of the main reasons that eating too quickly is bad, is that dogs are more likely to swallow air as they eat. This can cause your dog to develop problems with gas after eating and it may also increase their risk for regurgitation, vomiting or an upset stomach. In large and deep-chested breeds, eating too quickly and swallowing air along with the food is extremely dangerous because it can contribute to the development of a condition known as gastric dilation volvulus (GDV) or bloating. This happens when the dog’s abdomen fills with air, causing the stomach to twist on its axis and, in doing so, cutting off circulation to vital organs. If not treated promptly, bloating can quickly become fatal.
Another reason that eating too quickly can be dangerous for dogs is that it may increase your dog’s risk for choking. The faster your dog eats, the less likely your dog is to chew their food, so there is a risk that the food could become lodged in the throat, blocking the airway. Rapid eating has also been correlated with canine obesity. When your dog eats too quickly, they finish their meal before the brain receives the signal from the stomach to say that it is full – this can lead to overeating. It may also cause your dog to develop indigestion or abdominal discomfort that could disrupt their activity, preventing them from burning off as many calories as they should.