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November 2, 2013

Halloween Celebration and Slow Bowls- Healthy Eating,

som|dog’s SPOOKTACULAR Halloween Party at Crate Escape Charlestown

 somdoghalloweenfixed eddie at somdog somdogevent

 somdogwholefoodsbooth

A wonderful time was had by all!  Dogs playing in our spacious, customized daycare, and som|dog members catching up and planning future events to make the greater Somerville area (Charlestown!) as dog friendly as possible!

Slow Feeder Bowls

Break Fast Bowls

‘Slow feeders’ are dog bowls with built in mazes and blocked spaces, making it a challenge, or a game for your dog to eat his meals. Crate has been carrying them since they first came out. Recently there are some new companies making these bowls so we now have a selection.

Many dogs are  serious food inhalers. This can lead not only to overeating, and overweight dogs, but also some serious medical conditions including repeated regurgitation and bloat.

Bloat is serious!  Several of our Crate Escape dogs have had surgeries in the last 6 months. Luckily, it was caught early and they all survived.

When bloat occurs, the dog’s stomach fills with air, fluid and/or food. The enlarged stomach puts pressure on other organs, can cause difficulty breathing, and eventually may decrease blood supply to a dog’s vital organs.

People often use the word “bloat” to refer to a life-threatening condition that requires immediate veterinary care known as gastric dilatation-volvulus (GDV), gastric torsion and twisted stomach. This condition can cause rapid clinical signs and death in several hours. Even with immediate treatment, approximately 25% to 40% of dogs die from this medical emergency.

One of the companies who sells slow bowls did a test with a group of dogs and their caretakers. It was easily determined that the bowls actually do what they are supposed to do.  The general consensus is that it seriously slowed down the mealtime of all the dogs who used it.  Here is one man’s experience: “Loki is a serious inhaler of food.  I let him use a normal bowl once and he inhaled his 2/3c of food in about 10-15 seconds (including time where he coughed and choked on the kibble he sucked up).  He sort of does this pelican move where he will shove as much kibble in his mouth with one bite and then try to swallow it–with or without chewing. I started out giving Loki the ‘flower’.  I put his normal 2/3c kibble in the feeder, making sure to spread it all around so it was all spread out, and then put it on the floor for him.  I let him eat and it was a huge difference, after a minute or two of him starting, I grabbed my camera and filmed the duration of his meal.  I filmed for over 5 minutes 30 seconds before he got the last of the kibble, which means it probably took him between 6 and 7 minutes to eat the same amount of food that would normally take him about 10-15 seconds.”

Benefits:

  • A rubber bottom which can be used on hard wood, carpeting, rugs, and ceramic tile flooring and it doesn’t slide around.
  • Bowls are  top-rack dishwasher safe; so putting raw meat in the feeders is not a health hazard. Thawed out ground meat and canned food work just fine.
  • Many dogs seem to really enjoy eating out of the bowls
  • VERY easy to “fill”, just pour the kibble in the feeder

Overall

Great feedback. The slow bowls promote natural, healthy eating habits. By requiring dogs to forage through the maze-like designs to acquire their meals, slow bowls prolong feeding time thereby reducing the risk for bloat, regurgitation, and canine obesity.

 

Hilda Speaks (through Bradley)

From Ernie:  This week Hilda, my adopted sister wants to talk about HER slow bowl.

Translated by Bradley Hastings:  ” Hilda, our bull mastiff, is really slowing down her eating habits since she began using this product. She went from eating her meal in 30 seconds to now six minutes to complete her meals all due to these unique bowls.”

 

 hildylyingdwn1

Later,  Ernestine, Bradley & Hilda

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