Wolfing Down Your Food

I think of myself as a fast eater.  That's not anything to be proud of.  I'm sure if I could begin to feel full early in a meal rather than well after I had finished I would eat less in the long run.  My kids are quick eaters too which means they did not follow their mother's request to "Do as I say, not as I do."  Oh, well.  

I can try to eat more slowly and I have tried to teach my children to eat slowly regardless of how poorly that seems to have worked.  Our dogs, however, are a whole different kettle of fish.  Almost every dog I've ever owned has been a quick eater.  I'm glad to say we've never had dogs that were food aggressive which would be a new area of potential fights we've not had to have.  Chert was the first dog we bought after Ron and I got married a thousand years ago.  He was a border collie/dalmation cross.  He was an only dog and we kept his dog bowl full of dry dog food all the time.  That probably disqualifies him as a quick eater.

Gus, our blue heeler cross, is at the other end of the spectrum from Chert.  He positively inhales his food.  I worry about him choking or developing bloat.  He already vomits more than I think he should - never a large volume but usually immediately after he eats.  Getting all that air in your stomach is pretty uncomfortable.

To try and slow down his eating, I ordered Gus a new bowl that arrived this past week.  His first experience trying to grab his food out from between all the spikes and bumps of his bowl was funny.  He wasn't sure how to proceed with eating.  I left him alone to figure it out.  He came and found me a few minutes later and we walked back to his bowl.  I pointed out that there was still food there and he sighed and finished it off.  The next morning I checked the clock.  It took him 11 minutes to finish off his cup of dry dog food.  It would have taken him about 15 seconds with his old bowl.

I'm pleased this new bowl slows down the process of eating for Gus.  I'm also pleased that Sadie hasn't offered to clean out the bowl for him.  So far they have both been very respectful of each other's food bowls.  I'm hoping that continues.