We’ve all met that one dog – the one who eats so fast that you can’t help joking that he doesn’t taste his food.
Or maybe the dog that eats so fast she vomits with alarming regularity!
These dogs could really benefit from a slow feeding dog bowl. Slow feeding dog bowls are specifically designed to stop your dog from devouring his dinner in seconds, and they’re a lifesaver for kibble gobblers!
Quick Pick: Best Slow Feeder Dog Bowls
- Outward Hound Fun Feeder [Best Overall] Brightly-colored slow feeding bowl available in several colors and sizes.
- Outward Hound Fun Mat [Best Flexible Insert] This slow feeding mat is made of soft silicone and can be inserted in an existing dog bowl.
What Sort of Dog Needs a Slow Feeding Dog Bowl?
Unless your dog doesn’t seem to eat enough, there aren’t many dogs that couldn’t use a slow feeding dog bowl. In fact, a slow feeding dog bowl is a good idea for almost any dog.
That said, some types of dogs will benefit from the slow feeding dog bowl more than others.
Slow feeding dog bowls are great for dogs that:
- Are prone to bloat. Bloat is the twisting or swelling of a dog’s stomach due to eating too fast (or several other reasons). This can reduce blood flow to the heart, put pressure on other organs, or even tear the stomach. Bloat is potentially fatal, and it’s frighteningly common.
All dogs can get bloat, but it’s especially common in large, deep-chested dogs like Boxers, Setters, and Great Danes.
- Eat so fast that they throw up. Some dogs just can’t get it down fast enough! For pups that vomit after eating due to the sheer speed of their gobbling, slowing them down with a slow feeding dog bowl will save their stomachs from pain and your carpets from stains.
Generally, dogs that vomit from eating too fast vomit because they inhaled a bunch of air along with their food. Another option is an automatic feeder – some feeders can be set to slowly dispense your dog’s dinner over a specific span of time.
- Could do with more challenge in their lives, but don’t need a puzzle feeder. Some dogs aren’t quite ready for the Einstein-level puzzle feeders out there, but get a bit bored.
A simple slow feeding dog bowl will give these dogs a bit more challenge without discouraging them from eating altogether. Slow feeding dog bowls are a great introduction to puzzle feeders for dogs who are new to the idea.
- Are in training for resource guarding. While you should always work with a trainer any time you’re trying to fix your dog’s resource guarding, a slow feeding dog bowl will give you more time per meal to work on counter-conditioning and desensitization.
- Steal food at mealtime. If your beloved Fido likes to inhale his food and then rush over to steal your other pup’s food, everyone will benefit from slowing Fido down. Many owners will use a slow feeder to keep one food thief from stealing from others!
Even if your dog doesn’t fit into one of the above categories, he might benefit from a slow feeding dog bowl. Since many dogs spend much of their day doing basically nothing, adding more enrichment is always a good idea!
The Best Slow Feeding Dog Bowls Around
So now that you’re sold on getting your dog a slow feeding dog bowl, it’s time to explore your options.
Unlike DIY puzzle feeders, it’s actually pretty hard to do a DIY slow feeding dog bowl. Your best bet is to buy one. Here are some of the best slow feeding dog bowls on the internet.
1. Outward Hound Fun Feeder
Outward Hound Fun Feeder
Top selling, high-quality slow feeder
Features: The Outward Hound bright bowl is available in a variety of ridge patterns that you can pour food into.
It’s a major top seller with over 1 million bowls sold. The Outward Hound Fun Feeder made with high-quality ABS plastic to keep your pup safe. As a final bonus, this feeder is dishwasher safe!
This bowl is sturdy, safe, and comes in a variety of sizes and colors. It’s made to be good with dry, wet, or raw food diets. You can use a larger size to make the puzzle harder, since the food will be sunk further into the grooves.
The large sizes aren’t good for dogs with short noses. Some clever dogs learned how to flip the blow over, essentially ruining the “slow feeder” aspect.
Bottom Line: This bowl is one of the most popular slow feeders for a reason. It’s sturdy and has shapes and sizes to fit any dog.
2. Jasgood Slow Feeding Dog Bowl
Features: This bowl also comes in a variety of colors and textures. It only comes in one size (7.7 inches across) and has columns of plastic rather than long ridges to slow your dog down. Like the Outward Hound Fun Feeder, the Jasgood Slow Feeding Dog Bowl is dishwasher safe.
Buyers love the simplicity of this bowl, especially for dogs that struggle with deeper or more ridged designs. Customers also report that the customer service is amazing and send replacement bowls or parts very quickly when the slow feeders were dysfunctional.
Users noted that the non-slip feet came off easily on some bowls, making the bowls skitter across the floor in no time. Many owners also reported that a non-slip mat or a quick call to the company remedied the problem.
Bottom Line: This model is good for dogs who are easily discouraged, have short noses, or otherwise need an extra-easy slow feeding dog bowl.
3. Siensync Non-Slip Fun Feeder
Features: This bowl comes in one color (teal) and one size (8 inches across). It’s right in the middle of size and difficulty, making it appropriate for almost any dog out there. Its swirled design is a bit more challenging than the Jasgood bowl, though very similar to Outward Hound’s Fun Feeder. Like others before it, the Siensync Fun Feeder is non-slip and dishwasher safe.
Some users loved the one-size-fits-all sizing approach. Small dogs were especially well-suited, and the deep ridges of the bowl made for an extra challenge for them.
Although this product says “non-slip” right in the name, users noted that the non-stick feet came off nearly immediately and were far too small to be of much use. Customers were especially disappointed because this product markets itself as non-slip! While some customers liked having just one size option, others found that the size or shape wasn’t quite right for their dogs.
Bottom Line: This bowl is really very similar to the Outward Hound Fun Feeder, though customers noted that Outward Hound’s Fun Feeder had a better non-slip feature. The Siensynch is a bit cheaper than the Outward Hound’s Fun Feeder. While the Outward Hound has more shapes and sizes, the Siensync does have a unique design, if the design really matters to you.
4. Outward Hound Fun Mat
Outward Hound Fun Mat
Non-rigid, flexable slow feeder
Features: The Outward Hound Fun Mat is the first non-rigid slow feeding dog bowl on the list – and truthfully, it’s not even a bowl! Pups love this feeding mat for eating on the go or as their main food mat. It folds for easy transport and is dishwasher safe. This feeding mat comes in three colors and two sizes, helping you make the best choice for your dog (and your color palette).
Users loved the portability of this bowl, citing that as the main feature that made it stand out from the competition. Users also loved how you can actually fit the mat inside a stainless steel dog bowl, helping keep it in place. Dogs also struggled to flip this mat because it doesn’t have a lip to grab onto.
Since it’s foldable, the fun mat is probably the least durable option on this list. It could be chewed or torn by a determined dog. Some users also noted that the ridges are quite short, making the problem a bit too easy for some dogs.
Bottom Line: This mat is the best transportable slow feeding dog bowl out there. It’s durable enough for everyday use and could easily be your only dog bowl.
5. JW Pet SkidStop Slow Feeder
JW Pet SkidStop Slow Feeder
Features a sturdy rubber base
Features: By far the cheapest bowl on the list, the JW Skidstop Slow Feeder is also the simplest bowl here. Rather than having patterns of ridges or columns, the JW Skidstop Slow Feeder just has four ridges that point in like a hollow + sign. This simple design is great for dogs that need an ultra-easy slow feeding dog bowl.
Users love how easy the bowl is for their dogs to use, particularly elderly or short-nosed dogs. The anti-slip rubber on this bowl is more substantial than on any other bowl, keeping it in place.
Some users were frustrated by misleading sizing when they found that the bowl did not hold as much food as expected. Some puppy owners also found that the non-slip rubber is easily chewed by endeavoring puppies.
Bottom Line: If you’re looking for a cheap introduction to slow feeding dog bowls, this is your option. It’s not as fancy as others on this list, but it gets the job done and the price is right.
6. Outward Hound Elevated Slow Feed Dog Bowl
Features: Yet another form Outward Hound, this bowl actually sits on a stand. The elevation helps tall dogs eat more comfortably. It’s adjustable to three different heights, letting you find the sweet spot for your pup. Best of all, you can even remove the slow feeding insert for cleaning!
This bowl is packed full of great features. Users loved the customizability, which is lacking in other bowls on the list. It comes in two colors, allowing customers to pick one that works best for their lives.
One of the biggest causes of bloat is eating from a raised food bowl, so it seems contradictory to use a raised slow feeding dog bowl if avoiding bloat is your goal. Still, if you’re dealing with an older arthritic dog, you may need to weight the pros and cons of a raised feeder.
Bottom Line: This bowl is your best bet if you want a raised food bowl for your dog, but still want a slow feeding dog bowl.
There are tons of great slow feeding dog bowls out there for dog owners who want to slow their dogs down. For an extra challenge, you can fill the slow feeding dog bowl with wet dog food and freeze it – or check out puzzle feeders.
I’m a huge advocate of throwing out your dog’s food bowl, and I want to hear your stories of doing the same. What slow feeding dog bowl has been best for you and your pup?