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Hello:

My lab puppy Charlie is now 6 months old. He has always been a fast eater and I am becoming concerned. I feed him Nutro Ultra Adult, 1 1/2 cups in the morning and
1 1/2cups at dinner. He seems like he is always hungry. When I put the bowel down he is done eating in less than 1 minute. I doubt he even swallows.
Am i not feeding him enough?
Is this a lab trait?
Any suggestions to help him slow down?

Thank you!
 

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Look at chewy dot com; type in slow feeding bowls in their search; they'll come up.

I know large breed puppies have special needs regarding calcium but I can]t help with that unfortunately. The Dog food advisor's forum section on Diet & Health Issues has a stickie highlighted on top with info. Nutro is a so-so food, overpriced IMO only.
 

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Well, yes, Labs are generally *very* food motivated (to put it nicely) Downright PIGS (if you want it put less nicely. lol) Although, all four of my dogs (none of which has any Lab in their genetic make up) all snarf up their food in record time. Two of which do it to the extent that I feed them out of 'slow feed' bowls.

My personal favorite in the 'slow-em-down' bowl category is the Greene Interactive Feeder. You can find it (as well as many other makes/models on Amazon) or simply feed your puppy out of a muffin tin (spread the kibble out through all the cups) or on a flat surface like a cookie sheet. OR - use a food dispensing toy such as the Kong Wobbler to make meal time fun & slow him down.

As far as the quality of Nutro... It's not the worst kibble out there, but not the best either. If it's working for your pup (other than the rate of consumption) then I wouldn't worry about simply switching brands hoping to slow him down or make his seem 'less hungry'. It's a LAB! Less hungry isn't going to happen! :)
 

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My lab mix puppy also sucks up her food fast like a Hoover vacuum cleaner. She does not think it is necessary to chew the small kibble.

We have not done anything to combat that behaviour, because, well, it does not seem to be harming her in any way. She seems satisfied after meals.
 

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"Inhales food" is the very definition of a lab.

I remember reading about taste-testing dog food. The article said they could never use beagles or labs because they just inhaled every dish of food in the order they encountered them.

If you feed a lab until he's no longer hungry, you'll have either a dead lab or at least, a very obese one.
 

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Puzzle toys or slow feeders are great for this. Not only does it stop the vacuuming of food, it gives you break for 30 minutes to get something done while your puppy is busy trying to get food out of the toy. You could also put food in empty soda bottles or milk jugs if you don't want to go out and buy all those toys, but you have to make sure they aren't chewing through them and cutting themselves on the sharp edges. Just leave the lid off, and then they have to figure out how to dump out the food.
 

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I agree with everyone here - puzzle toys. My BC mix inhales her food like she is starving. We use the Kong Wobbler pretty regularly and that slows her down quite a bit. And it is fun for her and her brain. You could try putting a tennis ball in the bowl, I have heard some people do that and it works. My dog would just pick up the ball and move on. We also separate her dinner. She gets 2 cups so she gets one and then maybe 10 minutes later she gets the other.
 

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Puzzle toys, training at dinner time and if this is something that works for you scatter the food on a floor, patio or if you are feeling particularly evil, on the lawn. I wasn't concerned about bloat and would feed the dogs by tossing kibble down the hall to chase down and eat as well. For puzzle toys just putting kibble into an empty tissue, breakfast cereal or cracker box and taping it up makes a fun one to destroy or simply a rinsed out dry milk or water jug.

I would like to report that dogs do have bottoms to their bellies. As a naive owner somehow a 40 pound bag of kibble got left with the dog. She appeared to be a lab mix and never turned down food. To our surprise the dog did not eat it all.
 

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I completely agree with everyone above. Our pocket pittie was eating food from a regular bowl at a rate of about 10-15 seconds for a cup, and moving on to our other two pups' food bowls before they had time to sniff theirs. So he now eats in his kennel from a slow feed bowl. It looks like a big plus sign and it keeps him to about 2-3 minutes to finish the entire bowl. Which is a major improvement. Although I fear we will have to move to a Wobble or treat feeder soon as he has learned to flip the bowl over and dump the food out into his kennel to get around eating from the slow feed bowl. Too smart for their own good sometimes, I swear.


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In addition to puzzle toys, using mealtimes for training would slow her down too. Even if you only feed half the meal during training and the rest in a puzzle toy, it'll be fun for you and for your dog, who gets to spend time with you AND get food at the same time. ;)
 

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My Lab mix has always been a vacuum cleaner. He used to eat everything, then save his raw carrots for last. I never saw a major problem with him eating too quickly.

My Lab is not food protective. He'll warn off another dog near his food, but won't bite. And, if I need to add or subtract food, he ignores my hand, at most, pushing it out of the way to get at his food ... but nothing aggressive.
 

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You could start feeding meals in either a treat ball or buster cube.
That's what I have to do with my dog. He will literally inhale food, choke and continue to try to eat as he chokes. He's around 40lbs, and if I let him, he'd eat a 20lb bag of food until his stomach exploded, and continue to eat as he died. Some dogs are just like that.

So we have a few treat balls and since he can only get a few kibble out at a time, he can only eat a few kibble at a time.

ETA: I measure his food, too. I keep the measuring cup in the food bag and every meal is carefully measured. Extra weight is terrible for dogs.
 

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My Labs (I've owned more than a dozen) have all been gutzers who inhale their food. Never been a problem. I'd say, a la Babba Ram Das, "don't worry, be happy". It can come in handy to have feeding time over in 17 seconds and a good cleanup of any spills to boot. It amazes me that there is never conflict--they eat their own and don't try and scarf off anyone else...no possessiveness, no conflict. The only inconvenient thing is the way mine drool when I'm dishing up the food. I would worry if Labs were especially bloat prone, but they aren't.
 
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