How To Prevent Shih Tzu From Eating Too Fast

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Shih Tzus, with their adorable faces and charming personalities, have captured the hearts of dog lovers worldwide. These small and affectionate companions bring immense joy to their owners. However, like any other dog breed, Shih Tzus can sometimes develop unhealthy eating habits, particularly when it comes to gobbling down their meals at lightning speed. Rapid eating not only poses potential health risks but also hampers their overall digestion and enjoyment of the meal.

In this article, we will explore why Shih Tzus tend to eat too fast, the potential consequences of this behavior, and most importantly, provide you with effective strategies to prevent your beloved furry friend from rushing through their meals. By implementing these practical tips and techniques, you can ensure that your Shih Tzu maintains a healthy eating pace, promoting proper digestion, reducing the risk of health complications, and ultimately enhancing their overall well-being.


Why do Shih Tzus eat too fast?

Shih Tzus, like many other dog breeds, may eat too fast for a variety of reasons. Here are a few possible explanations:

  1. Instinctual behavior: Dogs have an instinctual drive to eat quickly. This behavior dates back to their ancestors who had to compete for food in the wild. Eating quickly ensured their survival by preventing other animals from stealing their food.
  2. Food availability: If a Shih Tzu has experienced a period of food scarcity or competition with other animals, they may develop a habit of eating rapidly when food becomes available. This behavior can persist even when the dog is in a safe and consistent environment.
  3. Food preferences: Some dogs simply enjoy their food and get excited during mealtime, leading them to eat quickly. This may be especially true for dogs that are particularly food motivated or have a strong appetite.
  4. Lack of food puzzles or slow-feeders: Shih Tzus, like other dogs, can benefit from using food puzzles or slow-feeders. These devices make dogs work for their food, slowing down their eating process and providing mental stimulation. Without such devices, dogs may gulp down their food quickly.
  5. Health issues: In some cases, rapid eating can be linked to certain health conditions such as gastrointestinal problems or nutritional deficiencies. If you’re concerned about your Shih Tzu’s eating habits, it’s best to consult with a veterinarian to rule out any underlying health issues.


Offer smaller meals

One of the best ways to prevent your Shih Tzu from eating too fast is to feed them smaller, more frequent meals. Instead of giving them one or two large meals, split their daily ration into three to four portions. This will not only help them digest their food more comfortably, but it will also prevent them from feeling too hungry during mealtime, which can cause them to eat too quickly.


Use slow-feed bowls

Another effective way to prevent your Shih Tzu from eating too fast is by using a slow-feed bowl. There are different types of slow-feed bowls available in the market, but the most common ones have raised ridges or obstructions on the surface that force the dog to eat at a slower pace. These bowls mimic the natural feeding pattern by preventing the Shih Tzu from gulping down large amounts of food in one go.


Encourage them to chew

Shih Tzus tend to swallow their food without chewing, which can cause digestive problems. To prevent this, encourage them to chew their food properly by offering them crunchy treats and dental chews. Chewing also stimulates their taste buds and promotes satiety, reducing their urge to eat too quickly.


Eliminate distractions

Another reason why your Shih Tzu may be eating too quickly is because they are distracted. If you have children or other pets, it is essential to feed your Shih Tzu in a calm and quiet environment without any distractions. This will help them focus on their food, and they will be less likely to eat too quickly.


Train them to eat at a slower pace

Training your Shih Tzu to eat at a slower pace can be an effective way to solve the problem. Start by placing a small amount of food in their bowl and allowing them to eat for a few seconds before taking the bowl away. Do this multiple times during mealtime, gradually increasing the time they get to eat. This will help them develop a habit of eating slowly and prevent them from gulping down large amounts of food in one go.



In conclusion, preventing a Shih Tzu from eating too fast is crucial for their overall health and well-being. Rapid eating can lead to various digestive issues and even pose a choking hazard. By implementing a few simple strategies, such as using slow-feed bowls, portion control, and engaging in interactive feeding methods, pet owners can help their Shih Tzus develop healthier eating habits. It’s important to prioritize the dog’s safety and provide them with a comfortable and relaxed feeding environment. Regular monitoring of their eating habits and consulting with a veterinarian can also contribute to maintaining a balanced and controlled feeding routine for a happy and healthy Shih Tzu.

Carol Jones

Carol Jones

Owner of the cutest shih tzu on earth

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