Can You Wash Dog Bowls with Dish Soap?

Intro

With so many bacteria and germs out there, its hard not to be a little anxious about the cleanliness of our dog’s bowl and how to properly get rid of harmful bacteria in the dog bowls.

These bacteria can really bring havoc onto our pet’s life if we don’t take the proper care towards feeding our pet clean dishes.

Some dog owners think that simply using dish soap is enough to kill all the bad bacteria and sanitize the dog bowl, while other dog owners disagree and think a thorough sanitation session is in order.

This then prompts many dog owners to ask the question:

Can you wash your dog bowls with dish soap?

The simple answer is yes, you can!

It’s safe to wash dog bowls with dish soap, however there are a few things that you need to consider before washing the dog bowl with dish soap.

Why You Need to Clean the Dog Bowl

clean dog bowls

Without proper cleaning procedures in place, our dog’s feeding bowl is ripe for bacteria and germs to grow.

Since our pets eat and drink out of the dog bowls, microbes that inhabit their mouths can easily be transferred over to the dog bowls during eating and drinking. This makes it extremely easy for bacteria to grow in the dog dish.

Some common bacteria that could potentially be inhabiting your pet’s bowl include E.coli, salmonella and MRSA!

Quite the lethal combination right?

And let’s not forget our good old friend biofilm, a slimy residue substance that binds and sticks to the walls of our pet’s bowl. Not only does it come in all sorts of colors such as green and red, but it also stinks and can cause some serious health problems too!

The bacteria and germs over in their dog bowl can overtime make them sick and in fact, could potentially make you sick as well if you come in contact with it.

This is especially problematic if you have little children around in the house as well, as they won’t know any better and could potentially touch or even put their mouths on the dog bowl.

This is why it’s important to keep a close eye on your little ones if you own a dog.

Spending a few minutes each day cleaning your dog’s bowl is a hell of a lot cheaper then spending hundreds if not thousands down at the vet’s office, right?

How Often Should You Wash it?

According to many vets, a dog’s bowl should be washed thoroughly after every meal with hot soapy water while water bowls should be washed down after every couple of days or as often is necessary to keep it clean.

At the minimum your dog’s food bowl should be washed daily, no exceptions!

Different Ways of Cleaning it

cleaning dog bowls with steel wool

The typical method suggested by vets when trying to rid your dog’s bowl of bacteria is to use hot soapy water.

A mild detergent that is non-toxic should be used for cleaning the dish.

It is also advisable to use a separate sponge that is used specifically for cleaning the dog bowl to avoid cross contamination.

If you chose to wash the dog bowl in the kitchen sink, make sure that you disinfect it after cleaning otherwise you run the risk of cross contamination with your dishes.

You can disinfect it by using a 1 tablespoon of bleach to 1 gallon of water solution. Just leave it in the sink for 5-10 minutes before draining the solution.

When washing the bowl, make sure you run your hands through the bowl, checking to make sure their aren’t any excess food stuff still left over, as well as any slime.

If slime is still present, then you’ll need to scrub it all away with a sponge before the dog bowl is thoroughly cleaned.

Make sure your careful not to scratch the dog bowls when washing, as this can make it easier for bacteria in the future to seep deeper into the dog bowl and thus making it harder to clean. If your using a steel wool to clean the dog bowl because bits of food still haven’t come off, be gentle and cautious.

Once the bowl has been cleaned, you should use a towel to dry the bowl off rather then let it sit around.

Make sure this towel is only used for drying the dog bowl and isn’t used for the household dishes.

In addition to washing by hand, it is also acceptable to use a dishwasher as well.

Some people prefer to wash their own dishes separate from the dog bowls when using a dishwasher, however this is not necessary. Just make sure to use the hot setting in your dish washer to kill all the bacteria.

It may also be a good idea to get several dog bowls for your dog. This way you can give them a fresh clean one while your busy sanitizing the dirty bowls.

Lastly its also important to examine the dog bowls after cleaning to make sure that their aren’t any scratches. Some dog bowls will inevitable show signs of wear and tear over time. If you notice any scratches then that means its time to buy a new dog bowl, otherwise you run the risk of making your dog sick.

To Bleach or Not to Bleach?

Using bleach to wash your dog bowl is not necessary, however it can be added as an insurance policy if you feel that you weren’t up to the task of cleaning the dog bowl thoroughly.

If you do wish to use bleach when washing your dog bowl, you can add in 1 tablespoon of bleach per every gallon of water when washing the dog bowl.

Let the solution sit in the dog bowl for around 2 minutes before rinsing it.

Whether or not you choose to use bleach when washing your dog bowl is not important, the most important aspect is that the dog bowl is thoroughly washed and cleaned so that their isn’t any residual food stuff or biofilm still in the dog bowl.

Best Dog Bowls for Keeping Germs Away

steel dog bowl

There’s a tonne of different dog bowls out on the market today, which makes trying to find a good suitable one challenging.

Here’s a list of the some of the most popular dog bowls you will most likely see on store shelves and what you need to know about each one.

Plastic

Plastic dog bowls have been on the market for what feels like an eternity.

These dog bowls are quite cheap and portable, which has lead to its popularity.

However, plastic dog bowls are prone to getting scratched easily. Once this happens, you can forget about using them again because now trying to clean them thoroughly becomes a nightmare.

Bacteria can now make themselves home once there’s scratches present in the dog bowl. Scientists found the most bacteria present in plastic dog bowls in a research study conducted at University Centre Hartpury. This may make you think twice about using a plastic bowl ever again.

In addition, your pet dog could potentially chew on the plastic and may even damage the dog bowl and break pieces of plastic off and eat it.

This could lead to major health implications for your dog.

Lastly, a lot of cheap dog bowls are not BPA free. BPA is the toxic chemical that is used to make plastic such as those found in water bottles. If your not using a BPA-free plastic dog bowl, you could be subjecting your dog to toxic BPA chemicals.

Ceramic

ceramic dog bowl

Like their plastic cousins, ceramic dog bowls have also been in the market for a while now. They are cheap and much more durable compared to plastic bowls.

Some of them may even be dishwasher safe.

The only problem with ceramic dog bowls however is that they could potentially get scratched or damaged over time through wear and tear.

Once there are scratches in the ceramic dog bowl, you can kiss it goodbye, as they are no longer safe to use.

Bacteria can easily seep into little nicks in the ceramic dog bowl and trying to get rid of the bacterial is a tall order even when your washing the dog bowl. In the same study conducted at University Center Hartpury, they found the most harmful bacterial species such as E.coli and MRSA in ceramic bowls.

You don’t want to subject your dog to these nasty bacteria, now do you?

And then there’s the issue of the dog bowl potentially falling down from a high height and breaking into a million pieces. A problem, you won’t find with plastic.

Stainless Stain Metal

Stainless stain metal bowls are another type of dog bowl to hit the market.

Unlike plastic and ceramic dog bowls, these bowls are ultra durable and can last a life time if the proper care is given towards them. A lot of the newer products that you will find out on store shelves nowadays are even rust-resistant.

In addition, they are less prone to having bacteria inhabit in the dog bowl due to being non-porous.

Lastly, stainless steel dog bowls are one of the easiest to clean and are dishwasher friendly too!

It’s with these reasons that stainless stain dog bowls are currently crowned the gold standard.

With this being said however, you should avoid scratching the stainless stain metal bowl while cleaning it by being extra gentle if using a steel wool pad, as this will also allow bacteria to seep into the dog bowl.

Also if your dog has any sort of metal allergy then stainless stain dog bowls are out of the picture, as they can cause allergic reactions in your pet to flare up, making life difficult and uncomfortable for them.

Silicone Dog Bowls

Silicone dog bowls are a new dog bowl to hit the markets.

It’s quickly making waves and getting adoption among dog owners.

Silicone dog bowls are made using silicone, the same material you see being used as a sealant in construction.

Dog bowls made out of silicone allow the dog bowls to be highly flexible and collapsible. This makes them perfect of bringing along if your outdoors a lot or you travel often.

They are also very easy to clean as well.

Because of the highly flexible nature of the material, silicone dog bowls can be height adjusted to a certain extent. In fact, you may find most of the silicone dog bowls on the market allow you adjust the height by several different levels. There are even some that are non-chewable too.

If your purchasing silicone dog bowls make sure that your getting the non-stick, non-toxic, and heat resistant kind.

Despite silicone getting a lot of praise from consumers, you still need to be cautious about silicone bowl’s long term use.

Also some critics claim that the material silicone itself can cause a wealth of health problems.

However, there isn’t much research in this area, therefore we don’t know for sure whether or not silicone dog bowls are completely safe.

Conclusion

We all know that keeping our pet’s bowl’s clean is part of the job of having a pet, however a lot of dog owner’s don’t know whether or not you can wash dog bowls with dish soap.

Washing a dog’s bowl with dish soap is not only ok, but it is the recommended method for cleaning a dog bowl.

However, a few considerations need to be made if you do decide to wash your dog bowls such as what type of dog bowl you are using, where your washing the dog bowl, how are you drying it, and what type of scrub your using to get the food and dirt off of the dog bowl.

Failure to properly clean the bowl, will lead to a host of bacteria inhabiting the dog bowl such as E.coli and MRSA that could bring havoc both to your dog’s health, as well as your families.

The current gold standard for dog bowls are stainless stain bowls. These dog bowls are cheap, easy to clean, and can last for quite a long while, which makes them perfect for having around the house.

Let me know in the comments below how do you wash your dog bowls.

What Size Dog Bowl Should I Buy?

Intro

What size dog bowl should I buy?

This seems to be a very common question faced by many dog owners.

For some pet owners, simply slapping on some food or filling a bowl with water is adequate pet care giving according to their thought process.

However there’s more to just feeding your dog then just giving them some food on a plate and calling it a day.

The size and type of dog bowl used when feeding or hydrating your dog actually is very important both for your dog’s well being, and also for saving you money down the line.

So then you might ask again, what size dog bowl should I buy for my dog?

The simply answer is it depends.

Here are some things that will help you determine the exact size dog bowl to purchase for your pet dog:

Size of the Dog Bowl

fat dog without a dog bowl

A lot of dog owners typically get this wrong and instead opt for a much larger dog feeding bowl then is necessary.

This then leads to a problem whereby the dog owner feels they aren’t feeding their dog enough due to the size of the bowl, despite giving the dog the proper portion sizes.

What happens next?

The owner overfeeds the dog and over time the dog gains weight and potentially even becomes obese.

Then there’s the size and height of your dog that comes into the equation.

Giving your dog the incorrect size dog bowl to eat and drink out of will mean that large dogs will need to hunch down when consuming food or even have difficulty accessing the food, while smaller dogs will need to reach further down their bowls to eat their food.

Both of these can overtime lead to a breath of health problems such as neck and back pain to name a few.

A dog food bowl typically should be no more than the size that allows your dog’s snout to comfortably eat and lick their food but no more.

Also another thing to take into consideration is that dog water bowls require a different set of parameters for your dog. This is another dog bowl selection error that a lot of dog owners often times get wrong.

Water is one of the most important nutrients for your pet dog, yet dog owners typically place more importance on the dog food bowl rather than the dog water bowl.

What ends up happening is the dog is given a giant food bowl while a significantly smaller dog water bowl is used for providing water to their dog.

Unlike a dog food bowl where you only want to give the dog enough room to eat their food comfortably, a dog water bowl should be at least twice the size of a dog feeder bowl.

In addition to selecting the proper size dog bowl, you should also consider portion sizes when feeding your pets.

Always follow manufacturer instructions when feeding your dog, as each food item will contain different calories thus yielding different size portions for your dog.

Failure to do so, will lead to either an excess of calories or insufficient nutrients for your dog’s diet.

One last thing to consider is whether or not your dog will grow.

A properly sized dog bowl today may not be suitable for your dog in the next 3-4 years after them have grown several inches tall.

You may need to purchase another new dog bowl for them when the time is right.

Depth of the Dog Bowl

dog drinking out of dog bowl

In addition to how large or small a dog bowl is, one must also consider the depth of a dog bowl.

Small dogs usually struggle eating out of dog bowls that are too deep. Deep dog bowls force the dog to go all in and expend unnecessary energy when trying to eat their food. Instead opt for a shallow dog bowl that gives easier access to the food.

Likewise, large dogs require deeper dog bowls to allow them to retrieve the food. Shallow dog bowls don’t give their snout and mouth much room to retrieve the food.

In addition, dogs with long ears such as Beagles benefit from deep dog bowls that reduce the chances of their ears from getting into their food. You may also opt for dog bowls with tapered sides as well. These are extremely helpful for preventing their ears from ever getting into their dog bowls.

Type of Material

dogs eating food

Now that we know how to select the proper dog bowl size for our specific breed of dog, its important to consider the type of material used in a dog bowl.

Different types of material used in the construction has both advantages and disadvantages.

Here are several types of dog bowls you will typically see out in pet stores and online:

Plastic

Plastic dog bowls have been on the market for quite a long while now. They usually are the cheapest of the bunch and are easy to carry and bring along due to its lightweight.

However, plastic dog bowls are prone to being scratched, and even breaking. This makes it easy for bacterial to seep into the dog bowl, making it very hard to disinfect and clean.

In addition, in case the plastic dog bowl breaks, your dog is at risk of consuming some of the plastic.

Then there’s the issue of BPA being used in the manufacturer of dog bowls. This typically isn’t an issue however, if your opting for a more well made dog bowl from a reputable manufacturer.

Ceramic:

Like plastic dog bowls, ceramic dog bowls have also been on store shelves for a while now.

Unlike plastic dog bowls, ceramic dog bowls are much more durable and not easily broken. These dog bowls are also relatively cheap and easier to clean then plastic as well.

The issue with ceramic dog bowls unfortunately is that if they do get chipped then bacteria can get deep inside of the dog bowl, making it very difficult to sanitize.

Stainless Stain Metal:

Stainless stain bowls are known as the gold standard when it comes to dog bowls.

These dog bowls are extremely durable and can last an entire life time if proper care is taken.

In addition, they are dishwasher safe and easy to clean.

They however do cost a little more than plastic and ceramic, and some dogs with known metal allergies are unable to use them.

Silicone:

Silicone dog bowls are a relatively new dog dish to make it out to the market.

Some of the advantages of silicone dog bowls are that they are lightweight and portable. They can easily be folded up and taken with you when traveling around. In addition, they are durable and chew resistant. The dog bowl’s height can also be adjusted to a certain extend, and the dog bowls are affordable.

The only issue however is whether or not the material silicone itself is safe for dogs.

There hasn’t been too much research on silicone dog bowls thus far, therefore you are taking a risk with using it. However, people who have used it have praised silicone dog bowls and there are more than plenty of positive reviews online about them.

Types of Dog Bowls

stainless stain dog bowl

Just like the type of material used in the manufacturer or dog bowls, there are also numerous different types of dog bowls on the market to serve different needs.

Elevated Dog Bowls

If you have a large tall dog, then elevated dog bowls make the most sense.

Elevated dog bowls are essentially a dog bowl that has been raised to make it easier for large tall dogs to eat their food.

This helps prevent issues like neck strain, back pain, exacerbating joint pain and arthritis.

Also because the dog bowl is elevated off the floor, it prevents the dog bowl from sliding when a dog is eating.

And lastly, it prevents a dog from playing with their dog bowl when there is water inside such as splashing it and making a mess.

Slow Feeder Dog Bowls

Slow feeder dog bowls were designed with one thing in mind…

Training your dog to slow down their food consumption.

There are numerous benefits to training your dog to eat slower.

These include things like:

  • Improved digestion when consuming their food
  • Reduces bloating and gas
  • Reduces the risk of gastric dilatation and volvulus (gdv) or twisting of your dog’s stomach. This is a serious health problem that needs to be treated immediately by a vet.
  • The risk of choking is significantly reduced with slow feeder dog bowls. Since your dog isn’t wolfing down the food left and right, but instead has time to chew their food and slowly let it go down their throats, the chances of choking have been reduced tremendously.
  • Helps your dog maintain a healthy body composition and prevents overeating. We all know how quickly dogs can devour their food. Seeing our dog quickly finish their meal in seconds, sometimes prompts us to put more food down on their bowl. With a slow feeder dog bowl, you can help your dog exercise portion control and prevent overeating.

Heated Water Bowls

Like food, water is a very important nutrient for keeping our dogs healthy and happy.

However, getting our dogs to drink out of a water bowl, especially when outdoors or in the winter time can be a challenge.

This is one of the main reasons why heated water bowls hit store shelves.

Heated water bowls essentially keep your dog’s water bowl from getting too cold.

This is especially useful for dogs that are outdoors a lot and drink from the water bowls outside or in countries with insanely cold winters like Canada or Norway.

Nowadays heated water bowls come in two varieties, corded and cordless which use batteries.

These dog bowls are also excellent to bring along for camping trips too.

Tapered Dog Bowls

These tapered dog bowls were designed specifically for dogs with long big ears.

Think Beagles or Bloodhounds.

Dogs with big long ears sometimes get their ears into the dog bowl thus causing a big mess.

With these tapered dog bowls however, they make it so that only your dog’s snout and mouth can go into the dish and nothing more due to the design of the dog bowls.

Automatic Dog Feeder Bowls

Finally we have the automatic dog feeder bowls. These automatic dog bowls work by having timed intervals throughout the day where the feeder dispenses a little bit of food for your dog to eat.

There are two variations of it, one using electricity while the other relying on gravity. The advantageous of the electrical version includes being able to time and program when the food will be released for the dog. They also help with portion control, and also modifying your dog’s eating patterns and behavior.

Their perfect for dog owners that are busy and aren’t home a lot and will keep your pet dog well fed while your away from the house.

These dog bowls however cost quite a bit more than traditional dog bowls, sometimes upward of 6-8 times as much, especially if your looking for a larger fancy one.

Conclusion

Picking the right size dog bowl for your dog is an often overlooked aspect of proper care giving for your pet dog, however it makes a world of a difference for them.

In this article we examined the rationale behind giving our pets the right size dog bowl and how to pick the right size dog bowl for our dogs.

In addition, we looked at several different aspects when selecting a dog bowl, such as the depth of the dog bowl, the type of material used in the manufacturer of the dog bowl, and various types of dog bowls.

Hopefully after reading this article you should have a sense of what type of dog bowl will be suitable for your dog and also the importance of having the proper size bowl for your pet.

Let me know in the comments before what type of dog bowls have worked well for your dog.

Are Raised Bowls Bad For Dogs?

Introduction

We all know the importance of keeping your dog well fed and hydrated.

But do we also consider the comfort levels of our pet dogs while they are eating or drinking?

Many dog owners simply think that fulling up a dog bowl with nutritious food is enough for their pets, however this may not always be the case.

Over the past several years, a debate has arised as to whether or not we should consider raising the height of the dog bowls to improve the comfort levels of our pet dogs.

This then brings us to the question are raised bowls bad for dogs?

The short answer is it depends.

What is an Elevated Dog Bowl?

raised bowls

Before we dive deeper into looking at the various factors that determine whether or not a raised dog bowl is necessary for dogs, let’s look at what exactly is an elevated dog bowl.

An elevated dog bowl is basically a dog bowl that has been elevated off the ground usually sitting on top of a stand or built into the stand. The elevated dog bowl usually sits somewhere around close to the height of your dog’s shoulder.

The basic premise of an elevated dog bowl is to give your dog easier access to their food by not requiring your dog to slouch over and bend down to eat their food or drink water.

Some of these elevated dog bowls only come in one fixed height whereas others are adjustable to meet the needs of your dog.

Benefits of Elevated Dog Bowls

Elevated dog bowls provide a number of benefits over traditional dog bowls. These include:

  • Reduce risk of neck strain
  • Reduce risk of back pain
  • Prevents dog bowls from sliding across the floor
  • Dogs with arthritis and joint issues will benefit from using an elevated dog bowl
  • More suitable for larger taller dogs
  • Promotes proper posture in tall dogs. Instead of having your dog lean and bend down to fetch their food, your dog can maintain a neutral posture.

So with all of these benefits associated with an elevated dog bowl, why hasn’t everyone jumped on the bandwagon already?

Drawbacks of an Elevated Dog Bowl

dog in raised dog bowl

An elevated dog bowl isn’t always advantageous and suitable for dogs. Here’s a list of drawbacks associated with the use of an elevated dog bowl:

  • It has a higher price tag compared to other dog bowl options out there. Prices for an elevated dog bowl can easily be 2-3x as much as a traditional dog bowl. The extra material that goes into manufacturing the raised dog bowl has added to the cost of the dog bowl.
  • Takes up more space compared to traditional dog bowls due to the design and structure of the dog bowl.
  • There is some debate that elevated dog bowls can in fact contribute to bloat. Since there is no concise opinion on the matter yet, there is some risk involved in the use of an elevated dog bowl.

Are Raised Dog Bowls Necessary?

Initially when elevated dog bowls hit the store shelves, they were hailed as the savior towards battling bloat in dogs.

Bloat is basically Gastric Dilatation-Volvulus (GDV) (twisting of the stomach and trapping of air and blockage of blood in the stomach and spleen)

There are a number of factors that contribute to this such as overeating or drinking, and swallowing too much air.

Over the years however new research studies have shown that elevated dog bowls aren’t really helping combat bloat, and in some studies, may even contribute to it. So with studies turning up mixed bag results, its hard to determine whether or not elevated dog bowls actually do in fact help with bloat.

In addition, critics argue that its not natural for dogs to be eating food and drinking water at that height, but instead that dogs evolved to be eating and drinking down below.

With so many controversy surrounding the use of raised dog bowls, when then is it appropriate for use?

When Should You Use an Elevated Dog Bowl?

non raised dog bowl with dog looking sad

Here are the times when it is recommended that you use an elevated dog bowl:

  • If your dog suffers from any sort of neck strain or pain. Having your dog continuing to eat from the floor will only exacerbate the condition and make it worse
  • If your dog suffers from back pain
  • If your dog has arthritis or any joint or mobility issues. This is especially useful for older dogs
  • If you own a tall large dog and are trying to correct their bad posture. When large tall dogs eat their food, they need to slouch down to the ground to eat. This can make things quite uncomfortable for tall dogs every time they need to eat and also creates a bad habit of keeping this posture.
  • If your dog has a habit of moving around the dog bowl when they are eating their food. With elevated dog bowls, this is no longer an issue as the bowl is raised off of the ground.
  • If your dog has a habit of splashing or “swimming” in their water bowl. Since the bowl is raised, splashing the water is near impossible and your dog won’t able to play with their food neither

In addition to these cases, you should also pay a visit to vet and seek their expertise and advice to see whether or not using a raised dog bowl is necessary for your pet dog. A quick visit there will answer all of your questions regarding this matter.

How to Select the Right Size

If you’ve determined that an elevated dog bowl is appropriate for you dog, then the next step is sizing the raised dog bowl.

To do this, take a piece of tape and measure the distance from the ground to the top of your dog’s shoulder or lower part of their chest. Subtract 7 inches from this measurement for a large dog and 3 inches if its a smaller dog. This should give you an approximation for the height of the dog bowl.

You may also want to consider getting an elevated dog bowl that is height adjustable. If your dog has not fully grown and matured, then their bound to get taller and bigger and outgrow the current dog bowl configuration you have for them. A height adjustable raised dog bowl will help solve this problem.

Conclusion

In this article, we examined what exactly is an elevated dog bowl and how it can benefit our pet dogs. Fans of raised dog bowls argue that they help improve the posture of dogs, reduce neck and back pain, reduce bloat, prevent sliding of dog bowls, and stop our pets from splashing the water.

Critics however argue that raised dog bowls cost more than traditional dog bowls, take up more space, and can actually contribute to bloat rather than prevent it.

As there is no definitive opinion on whether or not elevated dog bowls prevent or cause bloat, you should take discretion with the use of it.

At the end of the day, whether or not you choose to use an elevated dog bowl will depend on your dog’s needs and whether or not you feel it is appropriate for them.

If your dog is tall, suffers from neck strain, back pain, has mobility or joint issues, and likes to play with their food, then an elevated dog bowl could be of benefit for them.

If they don’t fall under any of these categories, then perhaps a normal dog bowl will do them just fine.

Let me know in the comments below whether or not you use an elevated dog bowl and why you chose to use one or not.

What Is the Best Dog Bowls for Boxers?

Introduction

Everybody knows that if your looking for a family friendly pooch with high energy levels and unwavering loyalty, then boxers are your best bet.

So what better way to return the love and devotion that your pet boxer shows you then with a reward of giving them the best dog bowl that you can find.

The trouble is there’s so many different dog bowls out there for various breeds and sizes of dogs that trying to find that perfect dog bowl can feel like quite the monumental task.

So how does one determine what is the best dog bowls for boxers?

In this article, we’re going to examine the different types of dog bowls out there best suited for boxers.

What Type of Material to Get?

Dog Bowls for Boxers

With so many new dog bowls coming out left and right from manufacturers, its tough staying ahead of the pack.

In the past, most dog bowls were confined to either plastic or ceramic.

However, in recent years, we’re seeing stainless steel metal dog bowls and even silicone dog bowls make it out to the market.

If your considering getting a dog bowl for your Boxer, here’s what you need to know about each type of material used in the creation of dog bowls:

Plastic

  • Cheap and very affordable
  • Lightweight and easy to transport
  • Susceptible to getting scratches and are prone to having bacteria thrive in the dog bowl
  • Difficult to sanitize and clean thoroughly to get rid of bacteria
  • Plastic can be damaged and even broken through accidental impact or the dog chewing and mauling on it
  • May not be BPA free depending on the manufacturer

Ceramic

  • More durable than plastic dog bowls
  • Also affordable
  • Easier to clean than plastic
  • Susceptible to getting damaged and chipped. Once that happens, bacteria can start inhabiting in the dog bowl while cleaning and sanitizing the damaged area can be difficult

Stainless Stain Metal

  • Very durable and can last a lifetime if proper care is used
  • Easy to clean and usually dishwasher safe
  • Some of the dog bowls are even non-slip
  • More expensive compared to plastic and ceramic dog bowls
  • If your dog suffers from a metal allergy your out of luck

Silicone

  • Lightweight and collapsible, making it very easy to transport
  • Cheap and affordable
  • Height can be adjusted to an extent
  • Chance of bowl accidentally collapsing when the dog is using it
  • Can be damaged through biting and chewing
  • May be not suitable for larger dogs
  • Usually need to buy a top separately
  • Jury still out on whether or not silicone dog bowls are 100% safe for use

Boxers have a reputation for packing a serious bite with their teeth and jaws. This means options like plastic and silicone are out of the picture. Ceramic dog bowls are durable, however are prone to getting broken or worn out over time, exposing your dog to harmful bacterial.

Therefore this leaves stainless steel dog bowls as the clear winner. These dog bowls are ultra durable, lasting a lifetime, non-sliding, and are easy to disinfect and clean. Your dog’s voracious bite is no match for the strength of these stainless steel dog bowls. The non-sliding nature of the stainless stain dog bowl also makes it harder to skid across the floor, a bonus as boxers are quite strong and can easily move dog bowls around while eating.

Selecting The Right Size Dog Bowl

best Dog Bowls for Boxers

In addition to the type of material used in a dog bowl, the size of a dog bowl matters.

Dog bowls that are large are best suited for larger dogs, as it makes eating out of the bowl easier.

Likewise, smaller dog bowls were designed for smaller dogs, giving them access to food that would have otherwise been harder to reach.

Using the wrong dog bowl size with your Boxer can have disastrous consequences such as causing neck strain, back pain, and even obesity brought on by overeating.

Since Boxers are medium sized dogs, they could go with either option depending on the size and build of your Boxer.

It’s best to test out various sizes with your dog before deciding on which one to get them.

Pay a visit to a local pet store in your area, and simply try placing several dog bowls in front of your Boxer to test out whether or not the size is suitable for them.

Remember, a dog bowl should be just the right size for your dog so that they can eat their food without there being too much extra space on the bowl. The dog should be able to stick their mouth and nose into the bowl comfortably but not more.

One last tip, you may opt for a shallow and broad dog bowl if your Boxer is on the smaller end of the scale, whereas a full mature Boxer may require a deep dog bowl.

Elevated or Non-Elevated Dog Bowls?

As boxers are medium height dogs, you may find that a regular non-elevated dog bowl is sufficient for their needs. Placing the dog bowl on the floor for your beloved dog will be adequate in most cases.

However, if you are seeing signs of bloating and difficulty eating their food or perhaps even breathing problems due to their short snouts, an elevated dog bowl may be a better option.

Elevated dog bowls are dog bowls that are raised off the floor to a higher level, giving the dog access to food without the need to crouch or slouch over. Large and tall dogs usually benefit the most from elevated dog bowls.

For dogs with joint or mobility issues, elevated dog bowls are generally recommended so as to not exacerbate the medical condition. If you boxer has any sort of mobility or joint issues, an elevated dog bowl would be a better option for them.

Normal vs Slow-Feeder Dog Bowl?

Boxer looking at something

Boxers have a reputation for gulping down their food really fast.

This could potentially lead to several health problems such as choking, bloating, and even Gastric Dilatation-Volvulus (GDV) (twisting of the stomach and trapping of air and blockage of blood in the stomach and spleen).

Also dogs that tend to eat really fast, often times cause their owners to overfeed them leading to weight gain and potentially obesity.

This is where slow feeder dog bowls come into the picture.

These dog bowls are specially designed to slow down the rate that dogs can eat their food.

The dog bowl is usually designed so that a puzzle or maze must first be solved before the dog is given access to his food. The quantity of food is also controlled with slow feeder dog bowls.

This makes it easy to train your dog to eat much slower and helping them reduce the risk of developing any health complications from eating.

In addition, it helps your dog maintain a healthy body composition.

And if this isn’t enough, these slow feeder dog bowls also provide mental stimulation for your dog, helping to keep his brain muscles working.

Conclusion

Boxers are a popular choice for a pet, due to their friendliness, devotion, loyalty, and high energy levels.

However, trying to select a dog bowl best suited for them may not be the easiest of feats due to the dog’s middle of the road stature and build.

In this article, we talked about several considerations to make when deciding on what type of dog bowls for boxers to get.

These include things like:

  • The type of material used in the dog bowl
  • The size of the dog bowl
  • The height of the dog bowl
  • A standard vs slow feeder version of the dog bowl

Stainless stain dog bowls remain the best option for Boxers due to their durability and strength to withstand the strong bite of Boxers.

Since Boxers are medium build dogs, they have more options when it comes to the other attributes such as size and height of the dog bowl. If your boxer is on the smaller end of the spectrum, then a small dog bowl with a standard height is more suitable for them.

If on the other hand, they are on the taller and bulkier side of the scale, then you will need to get them a larger elevated dog bowl.

Lastly, slow feeder dog bowls make a great option for Boxers due to the habit of Boxers gulping down their food in record time. These bowls help your dog maintain a healthy body mass while preventing a slew of health problems.

With these key considerations in mind, you will be better able to select the best possible dog bowl for your beloved pet Boxer and hopefully keep him happy and well feed.

Let me know in the comments below what type of dog bowl you are using to feed your Boxer.

Are Silicone Bowls Safe for Dogs?

Intro

With so many new dog bowl options out there nowadays dog owners are having a tough time deciding on which types of dog bowls to buy.

In the past most dog bowls were either made out of plastic, ceramic, or metal.

However, silicone dog bowls are quickly making their way onto the market.

These new dog bowls have become quite the hot item to buy for dog owners due to their portability and affordable prices.

However, some dog owners have concerns about whether or not silicone bowls are safe for dogs.

In this article, we are going to discuss whether or not silicone bowls are safe for dogs as well as the pros and cons of owning a silicone dog bowl.

Pros of Silicone Dog Bowls

eat with old woman eating out of silicone dog bowls

Here is a list of benefits of silicone dog bowls and why so many people have switched over to using them over traditional dog bowls:

  • Unlike plastic which is easy to scratch, break, and act as a breeding ground for bacterial, silicone dog bowls are flexible and durable, making them less susceptible to breaking
  • These dog bowls are easy to clean and usually dishwasher safe
  • They are easy to transport and perfect for using when traveling with your dog companion. Nearly all of them are collapsible making them easy to store away in your luggage or backpack.
  • Lightweight
  • Cheap and affordable
  • These dog bowls can also be adjusted to suit the needs of your dog

Cons of Silicone Dog Bowls

Although silicone dog bowls offer a large number of benefits over other dog bowls, there are a few weaknesses associated with using a silicone dog bowl. Here are the cons associated with using these bowls for dogs:

  • Chance of the bowl accidentally collapsing while the dog is using it
  • Can be damaged through the dog biting and chewing on it.
  • May be too small for some dogs
  • Need to purchase a top separately

Are Silicone Bowls Safe for Dogs?

two silicone dog bowls

Silicone is a synthetic compound material that is used in the manufacturer of a wide variety of things such as lubricant in the auto industry, as a sealant in the aerospace sector, cookware, and even in the medical industry.

Over the years however, silicone developed a bad reputation, mainly in the medical industry involving the use of silicone in breast implants.

Numerous individuals have had complications involving the use of silicone breast implants that usually include rupture of the breast implants, leaking of the silicone material into their body, and a wealth of health related complications and diseases associated with its use.

As a result of these issues, some dog owners are hesitant to take the risk and give silicone dog bowls a try.

To make things worse, there aren’t much research studies out there associated with the risks of using silicone bowls as silicone dog bowls are still relatively new to hit the shelves at stores.

Therefore the jury is still out on whether or not silicone bowls are completely safe for dogs.

However, based on reviews from leading online retailers, the answer seems to be a yes, they are safe for dogs.

With this being said however, I would recommend that in order to minimize the risk of any harmful effects of silicone dog bowls, its recommended to only purchase high quality silicone dog bowls that are BPA-Free, FDA approved, and free of lead.

If you are considering buying a silicone dog bowl for your dog then here are a few highly rated dog bowls:

PetBonus 4-Pack Silicon Collapsible Dog Bowls

  • Super durable and safe: These are made of 100% silicone food grade, BPA-free, dishwasher safe and non-toxic
  • Easy to clean and store
  • Perfect for small to medium sized dogs
  • Comes with a 1 year warranty and 100% money back guarantee

Comsun 2-Pack Extra Large size Collapsible Dog Bowl

These are perfect for larger dogs that would otherwise struggle eating out of a small dog bowl

  • Portable and convenient. The dog bowls are easily collapsible and fold up really well
  • Safe materials and Eco-friendly
  • Durable and reusable
  • Non-slip
  • Comes with a 12 month warranty and 100% money back guarantee

Ruff Barkbowl Collapsible Dog Food & Water Travel Bowl

  • 100% Platinum-cured food grade: Durable, tear resistant, microwave and freezer safe
  • Robust custom design with no plastic rim
  • BPA-Free
  • 100% Eco-friendly and dishwasher safe
  • Heat and Cold Resistant
  • Lightweight and perfect for traveling

Other Dog Bowl Options

Dogs eating out of a metal bowl

If your still wary about giving your dog a silicone dog bowl, here are some other types of dog bowls made out of different materials that you may want to consider:

Ceramic Bowls

These dog bowls have been around for a while now. They are much more durable compared to plastic bowls and don’t scratch quite as easily neither. The only problem with ceramic bowls are if you do damage them, then the bowl will now be a new breeding ground for bacteria as they can get quite deep into the crevices of the ceramic dog bowl.

Still, they are another good option if your worried about silicone dog bowls.

Stainless Steel Metal Bowls

Stainless steel used to be praised as the gold standard when it comes to dog bowls.

They are durable, lasting nearly a lifetime of use, and are easy to clean. In addition, most stainless steel metal bowls are dishwasher friendly too.

The only cons of metal bowls for dogs is that they tend to cost a bit more compared to the other dog bowl options out there. In addition, if your dog suffers from a metal allergy then these bowls are rendered useless as any contact with the metal will cause your dog to break out and go into a frenzy.

However, if your dog doesn’t suffer from a metal allergy then metal bowls remain a very good option for a dog bowl.

Conclusion

In the quest for developing the perfect dog bowl that is both durable and lightweight, manufacturers have come up with silicone dog bowls that are both collapsible and durable.

These silicone dog bowls are quickly gaining traction in the market, however dog owners have raised concerns regarding its safety.

In this article, we looked at the pros and cons of silicone dog bowls and whether or not they are suitable for you as a dog owner.

We also discussed whether or not silicone dog bowls are completely safe for your beloved dog and where the concerns about silicone actually came from.

Only time will tell whether or not silicone dog bowls are completely safe for dogs, however the current consensus on the consumer market seems to be yes, they are safe for dogs.

If your still hesitant about giving silicone dog bowls a try, then your in luck as there are a number of different options out there such as ceramic and metal dog bowls. However, each one of these still have some weaknesses and drawbacks.

Its up to you to see whether these drawbacks are a make it or break it type of deal when it comes to dog bowls.

Let me know in the comments below whether or not you currently own a silicone dog bowl or are considering owning one or if your against using silicone dog bowls and why.

Does Dog Bowl Size Matter?

Intro

With so many different dog bowl options out there nowadays, its tough to decide what size dog bowl to get for your dog.

Should you just opt for an all around dog bowl hoping it will be sufficient or should you spend a little more time researching the subject to select the perfect dog bowl size for your dog?

We all know about the importance of feeding and hydrating our dogs, while providing them with exercise and affection but does dog bowl size matter at all?

This seems to be one of the most common questions dog owners have when it comes to selecting and buying a dog bowl.

The short answer to this age old question is yes, it does matter!

and here’s why:

Consequences of Using The Wrong Bowl Size

different dog bowl size

In the past, dog owners would get whatever dog bowl they could find lying around to feed their dogs. This may not have been the best solution as research has come to light in recent years.

Bowl size and height can play a much more significant role then you would have imagined.

Selecting an overly big dog bowl can not only make eating difficult for smaller dogs, it can also increase the risk of pet obesity due to larger portion sizes being offloaded into the dog bowl.

Still, selecting the incorrect dog bowl size can also contribute to a wealth of health problems such as neck strain, back pain, and even eating such as giving a large dog a small dog bowl to eat out of.

Short vs Elevated Bowls

If your dog is tall and big, having him eat out of a small dog bowl will be quite the challenge for him. He may even injure himself and strain his neck muscles.

Elevated dog bowls should be used for dogs that are taller in stature while small dog bowls can be used for smaller breeds of dogs or puppies as it gives easier access to food.

Dogs with certain medication conditions such as arthritis, joint pain, or even mobility issues will also benefit from elevated bowls as it puts less stress on their joints.

Older dogs suffering from joint issues or back pain will also welcome the elevated dog bowl.

How to Determine The Right Size Dog Bowl

black dog trying different dog bowl sizes

How do you know your using the right size dog bowl for your dog?

Here are a few suggestions:

A dog bowl should be just the right size so that your dog can grab their food and eat it without it being overly large. They should be able to comfortable lick and devour their food. This means they should be able to stick their nose and mouth comfortable into the dog bowl without having a lot of excess space left over.

For example: a large dog bowl would be completely overkill for a small Shih Tzu whereas a Great Dane would struggle eating out of a tiny dog bowl.

One other thing to consider is that your dog will require a different size bowl as they grow.

A small dog bowl is perfectly fine when your dog is still a tiny puppy, but once they start growing and towering over that dog bowl, its time to make a trip down to the local pet store to pick up a new larger dog bowl.

If your looking to cut costs and know that your dog will eventually grow bigger and taller, it may be a wise choice to choose a dog bowl that has an adjustable height.

Shallow vs Deep Dog Bowls

silver dog bowl with dog food

Here’s another consideration when deciding on what size dog bowls to purchase for your dog.

For puppies, try to opt for a shallow and broad dog bowl instead of a deep dog bowl. Puppies will struggle to out of deep dog bowls because their legs aren’t quite tall enough to reach down to fetch the food.

These types of dog bowls are most suitable for small to medium breeds such as a Yorkshire Terrier and Beagles.

Since the bowls are shallow, reaching down to the bottom of the bowl is relatively easy for these dogs without running the risk of causing neck strain or putting pressure on their throats.

For larger dogs such as a Dalmatian, you’ll want to instead opt for a deep dog bowl as it allows for easier access to their food, without fear of it sliding away.

If your dog has big large long ears then you may also want to consider steep sided rather then the flat sided dog bowls with tapered sides.

The design of these dog bowls allows for a narrower top and side configuration with the dog bowl slanting inwards. The dog bowls are also much deeper compared to the regular deep dog bowls.

Dogs such as Beagles, Bloodhounds, and Black and Tan Coonhound will fall in love with these types of bowls as it makes eating a piece of cake while allowing their large ears to avoid getting food all over them, which means less cleaning for you as well!

Short ear dogs don’t have this issue therefore shallow bowls will get the job done for them.

One Final Tip

It’s recommended that before deciding on what size dog bowl to purchase for your dog, to pay a visit to a pet store and try out different size dog bowls with your dog.

Simply place the dog bowl in front of them to test out whether or not the size is appropriate for them.

If your still unsure about what dog bowl size to get, its best to ask a sales associate at the pet store for further assistance.

Conclusion

Lots of dog owners think that using any dog bowl is suffice when feeding or giving water to their dogs, however this is not the case, and in fact may be aggravating and contributing to any health issues they may have.

These include arthritis, joint problems, mobility issues, and even obesity and weight gain.

In this article we looked at why certain dog bowls are more suited for certain types of dog builds.

Elevated dog bowls for larger dogs, and small non-elevated dog bowls for smaller breeds of dogs and puppies.

In addition, we discussed the size of the dog bowl and why it matters.

Large deep dish dog bowls make it easier for large dogs to eat out it while minimizing sliding whereas smaller shallow dog bowls are best suited for smaller dogs due to ease of access to food.

However, large dog bowls require strict portion control on the side of the owner as to prevent overeating and possibly weight gain and even obesity.

In addition, we discussed why dogs with large ears will benefit from steep sided dog bowls. Not only is access to food much better, but it helps keep their ears clean but also prevents their ears from getting into the food and causing a mess.

Lastly, we talked about how to determine the perfect dog bowl size for your dog by paying a visit to a pet store and trying out several different dog bowls.

Although we put a lot of effort into feeding our dogs and ensuring they have the proper nutrition, we often times neglect to realize that dog bowl size plays a big factor in the quality of life for our pets.

Using the correct dog bowl can make quite the difference towards maintaining the happiness of our dogs and their health.

Let me know in the comments below what type of dog bowl sizes you use for your pet dog.

What Is a Cordless Heated Water Bowl?

Intro

If your like me and you live in country with 4 seasons with bone chilling cold winters, enough to freeze your socks off within minutes, then you realize how important having adequate heating and warm water is.

However, we sometimes fail to realize that our pet dogs also need warm water for drinking.

You wouldn’t drink subzero temperature ice cold water in the middle of winter would you?

So why would your pets do the same?

Luckily, there’s an awesome cool invention called a cordless heated water bowl.

But what is a cordless heated water bowl exactly?

A cordless heated water bowl for dogs is essential a dog water bowl that heats up to provide your pet dog with warm room temperature water to drink.

Here are a few things to know about cordless heated water bowls:

How Does it Work?

dog drinking from non cordless heated water bowl

There are 2 variations of cordless heated water bowls.

The first are solar powered cordless heated water bowls. In this version, you simply fill the heated water bowl with water and set it out in the sun. As the battery cells start storing power, it starts to heat the water for your pet dog. There are no wires with this water bowl so you simply set it out where there’s a lot of sun and off you go.

The second variation of a cordless heated water bowl are battery powered. These are a little more bigger and chunkier, however they are no wires and they are still portable. As for the first one, you simply fill the water bowl with water and turn the heated water bowl on. The water will become heated over time and drinkable. Some of these models can even aerate water to minimize saliva & slime buildup on the water surface. In addition, some manufacturers include tablets for adding to the the water for helping to improve a dog’s dental health through the prevent plaque and tartar buildup. If you live in an environment where there’s not much sun or if your looking for something with a bit more reliability in case solar powered heated water bowls aren’t enough, then the battery operated version would be a better fit for you.

Is Giving Your Dog Warm Water Really Necessary?

dog drinking from fountain

Having readily accessibly warm water for your pet dog is key for keeping them hydrated.

If the water is too cold, then your dog won’t drink out of the it.

Likewise if the water is also too hot, then your dog also won’t drink out of it, or very little of it. Your dog also faces potential risk of burning their tongue when trying to drink the hot water.

These will eventually lead to dehydrating and thirst for your dog in the short term. However in the long term, the effects could be a lot more serious.

In addition, giving your dogs ice cold water with ice cubes even in hot humid environments is not ideal, as the ice cubes can damage your dogs teeth as well as choking on the ice cubes.

Giving your dog warm water is not only safe, but is the preferred method of keeping your dog hydrated. It also helps them maintain their body temperature and not throw it through a loop with either very cold water or very hot water.

Benefits of a Cordless Heated Water Bowl

  • Portable: Since there’s no wires you can easily transport a cordless heated water bowl anywhere you go. This makes them perfect for camping trips or vacations.
  • Minimal upkeep costs, especially if using a solar powered cordless heated water bowl. Just simply fill the bowl up, turn it on, and let it rest. It will take care of everything else.
  • Keeps your pet’s water warm allowing your pet to remain hydrated all the time.
  • Can aerate water to minimize saliva and slime buildup
  • Easy to use
  • Some of them are even BPA Free

Cons of Using Cordless Heated Water Bowls

  • If using a solar powered cordless heated water bowl, you will require a lot of sun. This means you won’t get the most out of it if you live in an region without a lot of sun and daylight
  • Prone to wind blowing debris and dirt onto the heated water bowl: Since the heated water bowl will mainly be used outdoors, you run the risk of things potentially falling into the heated water bowl, especially in windy environments.
  • More expensive than traditional water bowls. Cordless heated water bowls can cost upwards of 3-4 times as much as a traditional dog bowl.
  • Bigger than traditional water bowls. Since batteries need to be housed in the dog bowl unit, it adds to the size of the dog bowl.

Should You Get One?

non cordless heated water bowl

If you live somewhere with extreme cold temperature such as in Alaska or the arctic, then a cordless heated water bowl makes a lot of sense. The water can get quite cold if left outside and this device helps the water remain warm for your dog to drink.

Also for those of you do a lot of travel or your pet dog is outside a lot, especially in colder climates, a cordless heated water bowl just might be exactly what the doctor ordered.

They are portable, cost effective, easy to use, and helps keep your dog hydrated and happy. They also aren’t too expensive neither despite costing more than traditional dog bowls.

If you stay indoors a lot with your dog, and you don’t do a lot of traveling then perhaps the more traditional dog bowls such as a plastic, ceramic, or a stainless stain metal dog bowl would be suffice.

Also if your traveling around a lot to warmer climates and don’t want to carry around a lot of luggage, a silicone collapsible dog bowl would be a better option compared to a cordless heated water bowl. These are extremely light, collapsible, BPA-free, and highly portable. However they are prone to tipping and collapsing if enough force is used against them.

Conclusion

We all know how important water is to life.

We use it for many things including keeping us alive.

When we live in colder climates, we sometimes don’t consider whether or not the temperature of our water is suitable for our pet dogs to drink.

Having a readily available source of clean warm drinking water is of utmost importance for keeping our dogs healthy and happy.

A cordless heated water bowl is the perfect fix for those of us currently experiencing this dilemma.

Cordless heated water bowls are portable, easy to use, require minimal upkeep, helps aerate the water to reduce saliva and slime, and keeps your dog’s water warm for them to drink.

However they do require either a lot of sun to charge the solar cells if your using a solar powered version and tend to be a little more expensive compared to regular dog bowls.

But still, considering all of the benefits that it will bring to your pet dog, the higher price tag more than makes up for it.

At the very least, you will have a very happy and hydrated dog that will thankful for your thoughtfulness.

Let me know in the comments below whether or not you have ever used a cordless heated water bowl and what your experience with using it was like.

Can Dogs Be Allergic to Metal Bowls?

Disclaimer: I am not a vet, medical professional, or an expert on pet medical conditions. If you suspect that your dog has a medical condition, its advised to seek professional medical help from a licensed professional.

Intro

Metal stainless steel dog bowls seem to have developed a reputation as the gold standard and go to when deciding on what type of material a dog bowl should be made out of.

It then comes as a complete shock when dog owners find out that their dog is having issues either eating or drinking out of the metal dog bowl. Things get even more bizarre when their pet dog start showing signs and symptoms of an allergic reaction.

So the question arises now as to can dogs be allergic to metal bowls?

The simply answer is yes!

and here’s why.

Dogs With Metal Allergies

sign with metal bowls

Nowadays dog bowls can come in a variety of different makes and models. Just visit your local pet store and soon you’ll be astonished by the sheer amount of dog bowl options at your fingertips.

Dog bowls are usually made out of either plastic, ceramic, or metal, with a strong preference for metal due to its durability, ease of cleaning, and reliability.

However, some dogs unfortunately possess metal allergies and are allergic to common metals such as nickel.

Nickel is often times used in the manufacturer of stainless stain products, so stainless stain dog bowls would be no exception.

When a dog with an allergy to nickel comes into contact with it either through skin contact or food consumption, an allergic reaction is almost certain.

Common Signs and Symptoms of a Metal Allergy

Here are a list of some of the most common signs and symptoms of a dog possessing a metal allergy:

  • Highly itchy skin
  • Redness in the skin
  • Lesion formation around the body
  • Skin irritation
  • Fur loss
  • Bumps forming
  • Uncontrollable non-stop scratching
  • Ear infections
  • Chewing and biting the areas affected

Causes

metal dog bowls

The typical causes of a metal allergy in dogs comes down to the following scenarios:

  • Excessive production of antibodies within the dog’s body reacting with the metal molecules causing an inflammatory response hence the redness and itching. Histamines are usually released from the body to fight with the “invaders”, in this cause the metal molecules.
  • Skin contact with the metal especially around the mouth and jaw when your dog is consuming their food or water. Also toys or objects that you dog touches will trigger an allergic reaction as well.
  • Ingestion of the metal eg, either from the dog bowls themselves or from metal leaking over to the food from the can.

In addition to the metal dog bowl, dog collars made out of metal may also cause an allergic reaction such as severe itching and redness when it comes into contact with the dog’s skin.

Usually dogs don’t develop a metal allergy until later on, after having come into excessive repeated contact with the metal.

Diagnosing a Metal Allergy

To diagnose whether or not your pet dog has developed a metal allergy, you should visit your local vet and get a professional examination. A process known as cutaneous cytology will be used to gather scrapings or smears of lesions that may have formed on your dog for further examination.

During this examination, vets look for mites, fungal spores, bacterial infections, and anything else that is wrecking havoc on your pet dog. Blood samples may also be taken to dig deeper into the cause of the allergy.

The vet will then perform a skin test to rule out whether or not the allergy is a contact allergy or a food allergy caused by an intake of metals to see if its consumption related.

if its consumption and food related then you will need to do a thorough examination at home and check if their is anywhere where metal could be getting into your dog’s food such as from the cans housing the dog food, dog bowls, toys, etc.

What to Do About It?

food and water metal bowls

Once you’ve gotten a clear diagnosis from your vet and that your dog is in fact allergic to metal then you can apply these simple modifications to your pet’s lifestyle to reduce the risk of any future flair ups.

One of the quickest and easiest ways to fix a metal allergy problem for your dog is to simply eliminate it from your dog’s environment.

In this case, it means swapping out metal for a different type of material such as plastic or ceramic dog bowls.

Each one of these types of dog bowls do come with pros and cons, so you will need to weigh out what is more important for you and what you can live with.

Plastic dog bowls tend to be a lot cheaper compared to metal bowls, however they can get scratched easily and be a haven for bacteria.

Ceramic dog bowls on the other hand, are much more durable, but cost a little more. Unfortunately they too can get chipped and damaged. Cleaning is also more difficult with a ceramic dog bowl.

In addition to plastic and ceramic dog bowls, silicone dog bowls seem to be making its way onto the market.

These silicone dog bowls are usually non-toxic and bpa-free, collapsible and portable, and durable. If you do a lot of traveling with your dog, then these would be a great option. In addition, a lot of them are heat resistant and don’t retain odors. There’s no more worrying about smells floating around in your house with silicone bowls.

The only problem with silicone dog bowls is that they aren’t stiff and hard. This makes it easier for food to fall out and even have the dog bowl flip over.

Last but not least, disposable dog bowls are also getting popular with dog owners that don’t want to spend a lot of time washing their dog bowls. These are usually made out of biodegradable material and are non-toxic, and non-allergic to dogs.

In addition to swapping out metal dog bowls with another type of dog bowl, your vet may also prescribe your dog some medication depending on their diagnosis such as corticosteroids and antihistamines to help reduce the inflammation and allergic reactions that they are experiencing.

Lastly, any toys or objects that your dog is most likely to come into contact with possessing any traces of metal will unfortunately have to be removed and kept away from your dog.

Conclusion

Trying to figure out what exactly is causing an allergic reaction to your dog can be considered a feat in and of itself. However, once you’ve nailed it down, you can now take the proper steps towards ensuring your dog never has to suffer another allergic outbreak like this again.

These include switching up the material used in the manufacturer of dog bowls such as plastic or ceramic dog bowls.

In addition, eliminating all traces of the substance causing the allergic reaction as best as you can, can have a profound effect on the quality of life of your pet dog.

Although stainless steel metal dog bowls are considered the gold standard, sometimes, mistakes are made in the manufacturer of stainless steel dog bowls and other harmful substances are added in by accident.

In other cases, shortcuts are taken to maximize profits while delivering an inferior product.

This is why its always best to only purchase high quality stainless stain dog bowls to prevent any potential metal from leaking out such as nickel that can cause an allergic reaction in our dogs.

You know the old saying right?

“You get what you pay for.”

It’s also important to train your dog to eat properly and not try to hack away at their metal dog bowl to prevent metal from seeping out.

If your dog has started to show signs and symptoms of an allergic reaction to metal, its best to pay a visit to your vet to determine whether or not your dog has developed an allergy to metal.

Let me know in the comments whether or not your dog has a metal allergy and what sort of things you did to help manage the metal allergy?

How Do Slow Feeder Dog Bowls Work?

Does it feel like your dog is sprinting in a race when trying to devour their food?

Are you concerned about them choking on their food because of how fast they eat?

Although we tend to witness this a lot more with larger dogs, all dogs can develop this bad habit of eating really quickly.

If your dog is like mine and loves to wolf food down in record time, then you really need to consider looking at a slow feeder dog bowl.

But what exactly is a slow feeder dog bowl and how do slow feeder dog bowls work?

Why Is Eating Slower Better For Your Dog?

Dog eating food

Even though dogs love to eat, they can get carried away quite easily, especially when tempted by the smell of dog food.

Dogs love to chow down their food as if their life depended on it and they have been starving for weeks, however eating slower does have many benefits for your dog.

Research has shown that eating slower improves digestion, reduces the risk of choking, developing gastric dilatation volvulus (GDV) or more commonly gastric dilation, and better overall digestive health for your dog.

Excessive inhalation of air while eating can lead to bloating, and an inability to expel the air and food out of the stomach, leading to a life threatening conditioning called Gastric Dilatation-Volvulus (GDV). This can cause the stomach to become twisted, and thus trapping the air and blockage of blood inside of the stomach and spleen.

By simply eating slower, our dogs can significantly reduce these risks, however dogs have a difficult time modifying their behavior.

This is where the slow feeder dog bowl comes into the picture.

How Do Slow Feeder Dog Bowls Work?

A slow feeder dog bowl basically creates an obstruction or maze like structure within the dog bowl making it harder for the dog to gulp down their food in quick succession. Instead, dogs are given access to small amounts of food through expending extra effort and thinking about how to solve the puzzle.

In order for your dog to eat the food, they must first navigate their food through the maze. This in turn forces your dog to slow down their rate of eating.

Giving your dog this slow feeder bowl will over time modify their eating behavior and habits, helping them slow down the pace of eating food.

You no longer feel the need to give them seconds unlike in the past where they were able to quickly devoured their food all in a matter of seconds.

This is what has made this type of dog bowl so popular in recent times.

Sorry Fido but your not getting seconds anymore!

Benefits of a Slow Feeder Dog Bowl

slow feeder dog bowl
  • Improves Digestion: A slow feeder dog bowl prompts your dog to actually take their time when consuming their food and actually chew it, rather then just inhaling it in. Chewing and breaking down the food allows for easier digestion.
  • Reduces bloating and gas: Since your dog now has time to breath and let out air and gas, bloating is significantly reduced.
  • Modifies dog eating behavior: no more sprint eating sessions which is especially problematic with large dogs.
  • Reduces the risk of Gastric Dilatation-Volvulus (GDV): This medical condition sounds scary and taking your dog over to the vet to have an operation to treat this can not only run you tens of thousands of dollars, but is a life threatening condition that could very well be the last time you ever see them again. That’s why getting a slow feeder dog bowl is absolutely critical.
  • Reduces risk of choking: When your dog is unable to chow down on a mouth full of food quickly, his risk of choking is significantly reduced. You won’t feel any anxiety anymore while watching your dog eat their food for fear of their life.
  • Helps with portion control and overeating: Say goodbye to excess weight gain and slow sluggish behavior. Also the extra effort required to eat their food in of itself could be considered exercise as well.

As you can see, there are many benefits towards switching from a regular dog bowl to a slow feeder dog bowl.

And don’t let your dog’s sad looking guilt tripping eye’s try to convince you into dropping down more food for them. For a slow feeder dog bowl, he’s gonna be too preoccupied to pull that trick up his sleeve.

How to Choose The Right Slow Feeder Dog Bowl

Ceramic slow feeder dog bowl

1. Type of Material Used

With so many choices of slow feeder dog bowl options out there, its hard to decide which one is the best for our beloved dogs.

Currently on the market there are usually 3 types of materials that you will see dog bowls being made out of:

  • Plastic
  • Ceramic
  • Stainless steel

Plastic tends to be the cheapest out of all the dog bowl types, however they tend to scratch easier and can harbor a tonne of bacterial as well, making them less than ideal for feeding your dog. You also run the risk that your dog may try to ingest the plastic material if a piece of the dog bowl ever breaks off.

Next comes ceramic dog bowls. These are a slight step up from plastic bowls, however they too can present the same problem as plastic bowls if you ever chip them.

It is with this reason, that I only recommend that you stick with stainless stain bowls. These bowls can last a long time, and are easy to clean and sanitize.

They also don’t house nearly as much bacterial as the other two options.

Lastly, if your lazy or just don’t got time to be washing your dog’s bowl on a daily basis, then stainless steel bowls are the way to go, as they are dish waster friendly. Just simply pop them into the dish waster and voila, you’ve got yourself a clean dog bowl to feed your dog with.

2. Size of The Dog Bowl

Size does matter when it comes to selecting the right dog bowl for your dog.

A simple tip when trying to decide what size of dog bowl to use is to select it based on the size of your dog.

For example, if you have a large dog such as a Great Dane, then the ideal dog bow would be a large dog bowl, while a smaller dog such as a Shih Tzu would need a small dog bowl.

Its recommended to stick to the proper size dog bowl when feeding your dog. A small slow feeder dog bowl would not be ideal for a large dog and may even put them off from eating altogether.

3. Type and Level of Difficulty of Puzzle

Slow feeder dog bowls come in a variety of different puzzle patterns and difficulty levels. You’ll find anything from spiral patterns to dog bowls with trees or pikes sticking up. Some of these dog bowls even prevent the dog bowl from slipping and flipping over. Some smarter dogs have figured out that rather then wasting their time trying to solve the puzzle that they can instead just flip the dog bowl over and then get access to all of the food immediately.

If your dog is having a difficult time solving the puzzle, you may wish to give them an easier to solve slow feeder dog bowl, so as to prevent starvation and over-taxation of their mental capabilities.

One last note about this: If your dog gets good at solving the puzzle for a particular slow feeder dog bowl, you may consider swapping it out for another slow feeder dog bowl. This keeps things mentally stimulating for the dog as well.

Conclusion

Slow feeder dog bowls are a great alternative to traditional dog bowls as they provide a breadth of benefits to your dog such as:

  • Portion control and prevents overeating
  • Modification of your dog’s eating behavior (quick to slower)
  • Reduces chances of choking
  • Reduces risk of developing Gastric Dilatation-Volvulus (GDV)
  • Improves digestion
  • Reduces bloating and gas

There are a number of different types of materials that are used in slow feeder dog bowls, however stainless stain remains one of the best options due to its durable material, ease of cleaning, and reduced chance of harboring bacteria.

In addition, the size of the dog bowl matters. Large dog bowls should always be used with large dogs, and smaller dog bowls for smaller dogs.

We sometimes can’t help but feel guilty and sympathetic towards our dog when they gulp down their food in record time and are yearning for more, especially when they give us that sad puppy eyed look. However, we need to remind ourselves that training our dogs to eat slower is of much more importance towards their overall health rather then giving them more food.

So the next time your dog tries to guilt trip you into giving them more food, just remember that your not doing them any favors by caving in to your dog’s demands.

Let me know in the comments what type of slow feeder dog bowls you like to use to feed your dog.

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