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Tips to slow down a dog that eats too fast

by james on 04 Jul 2022
Most dogs love food, but some eat so fast it is a hazard to their health. Fortunately, there are many ways to slow a speed-eating pet. Tips to slow down a dog that eats too fast It’s no secret that many of our pets love food, but some dogs eat so fast it can put their health in jeopardy. Chowing down at warp speed not only prevents proper chewing, but can lead to choking, vomiting or a condition known as gastric dilation that is potentially fatal. That is why it is crucial to slow down speed-eating pets. Colloquially called canine bloat, gastric dilation occurs when a dog’s stomach expands due to gassy build-up, to the point it can twist your dog’s abdomen and prevent gases from exiting the stomach. This serious condition can cut off circulation to the stomach, heart and other vital organs and can prove fatal within hours if left untreated. Though this is just one of the most serious outcomes of eating too quickly, it highlights the importance of slowing Fido down during mealtimes. Fortunately, there are many easy ways to stop your pet from plowing through his dinner too fast.  One of the easiest ways to slow dogs down during mealtime is to change the physical structure of their food bowls. You can purchase a puzzle bowl online, with dozens of designs to choose from. The idea of these feeders is to present a food dish with irregular shapes that that slow Fido’s eating. Some pet parents may want to try their hand at an easy, do-it-yourself version of these bowls, which can be as simple as placing a smaller bowl upside down inside a large dish. By creating a narrow “moat” for food, your dog must work harder to eat his way around the dish. You can also try placing large (meaning too large to swallow!) toys in his dish to slow your pet’s eating. Other pet parents chose to scatter food in various compartments of a muffin tin, across a baking sheet, or simply around the flood so their dog has to move for each piece—although the last option works best in single-pet households, where it will not provoke competition. Other interactive objects known as treat-release toys are designed to make your dog work to extract small portions of food from a cube, Kong or other device. Some pet parents find these loud, but they can be another great option for keeping dogs occupied during the day while are you are at work. In addition to physical devices designed to slow your pet down, you can using feeding times strategically to prevent Fido from gulping his food. Turn dinner time into a game of hide and seek to provide mental and physical stimulation for your pet. If you schedule allows, you can also feed your dog more small meals throughout the day to combat his desire to inhale his dinner. Try a few of these options with your pet to see what works best to keep Fido fit and avoid the potential pitfalls of speed eating. 

What your dog’s sleeping position says about him

by james on 20 Jun 2022
Dogs communicate in many ways, even while they’re asleep. Here are what some common canine sleeping position say about your pet. What your dog’s sleeping position says about him Just like people, dogs have unique sleeping positions that offer insight into their personalities. Whether you are looking for signs of his health or happiness, watching Fido sleep can provide insight into how your pet is feeling. Here are what some common canine sleeping positions say about your companion: 1. Curled in a ball: Sleeping curled up is more common than you might think. Not only does this position keep dogs warm, but it also protects their vital organs. Sleeping in a ball allows our pets to spring to action quickly if a threat arises. Do not be concerned if your pet sleeps like this, however, as he may simply be conserving body heat or doing what comes naturally.  2. On his side: Sleeping on his side leaves your pet’s vulnerable stomach exposed, so only a dog that is comfortable in his surroundings will sleep in this position. Even pets that normally sleep on their sides may switch it up in a new location or around a new person, so do not be alarmed if your side-sleeping pet  curls up when something is new. 3. Sprawled out: Affectionately known as “splooting,” dogs that sleep in a “Superman” position are ready to jump at a moment’s notice. Puppies or dogs that simply love being in on the action are known to favor this position—especially if they are tuckered out and flop down after playtime.  4. Dead bug: Sleeping on his back, paws in the air, is a way for your dog to cool off. Exposing his vulnerable belly means your pet is extremely comfortable in his surroundings, so take it as a compliment if this is your companions sleep state of choice.  5. The “lion pose”: Similar to cats’ loafing position, sleeping belly-down with his head rested on his paws is your dog’s way of casually dozing. He can be ready to jump up in a moment’s notice, so dogs are typically not fast asleep in this position. Your dog may be in tune with what is going on around him, but taking a moment to recharge. 6. Snuggled up: Dogs that sleep cuddled up to you or other pets are showing the ultimate sign of affection. Snuggling while fast asleep puts him in a vulnerable position and your pet is showing he trusts you completely in doing so. Do not violate this trust by disturbing your sleeping pet, but enjoy the quality time together. Dogs will often snuggle back-to-back—a natural position for both protection and warmth in packs in the wild. If you notice anything unusual about your dog’s sleep, it is important to take him to the veterinarian for a checkup, as changes in any routine behavior can a sign something is wrong. A drastic increase in the time spent sleeping can signal a health problem, too, so make sure to check in on your pup regularly to ensure he stays happy and healthy.

Why do cats have such good balance?

by james on 01 Jun 2022
Cats are masters of landing on their feet, and for good reason—your pet has several physical attributes that give him great balance. Why do cats have such good balance? Cats are known for landing on their feet, but this level of feline finesse requires some complicated physics. Thanks to their keen flexibility and a specially designed inner ear, cats are masters of landing on their feet even from the most precarious of falls. Cats have more vertebrae in their bodies than humans, allowing them to twist and turn with agility when they need to react quickly. This is especially important when your companion jumps or falls, as a cat uses his fast reflexes and flexibility to land on his feet. To do this, your pet uses his sense of sight and inner-ear balancing system to quickly determine which way is up, and then then rotates his front paws so they face downward. His lower body follows suit, allowing Kitty to quickly and seamlessly land on his feet.  In addition to their flexible spines, cats have other physical traits that help them land with grace, including their small bodies, light bones, and thick fur that serves to slow falls and soften impacts. Their collarbones afford them additional flexibility, too, as these bones are free-floating in felines, unlike other mammals. If you’ve ever noticed your pet fall back-first, you probably saw him twist his front end so his paws face the ground, with his hind legs following suit. His tail helps him realign during the fall, keeping Kitty level until he makes contact with the ground. Even young kittens are adept at sticking their landings, as cats as young as seven weeks have developed an inner-ear apparatus known as the cochlea that provides a keen sense of balance. This fluid-filled feature combined with his sense of sight helps Kitty orient himself quickly when a righting reaction is needed at lightning speed. Even with their great sense of balance, however, it is important to keep cats living in upper-story apartments inside, as curious feline have been known fall out of windows attempting to chase birds or other animals. Though cats can often right their falls in less than a second, this does not mean they are immune to injuries from falling. Broken bones, missing teeth and trauma can result from a fall, sometimes with fatal results, so be sure to protect your pet by keeping windows closed. If you want to help him enjoy the outdoors safely from his home, you can invest in a perch or other accessory designed to give your pet unfettered views of his surroundings.