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A gluttonous dog isn’t born, but rather he’s made. This means that it depends on the upbringing that he has had since he was a puppy.

If your dog practically swallows everything that he has within reach, always has a voracious appetite and can eat without stopping, then you should be careful… he could get sick! Remember that a dog with proper eating habits is a healthy and strong pet.

Today’s dog foods are designed to be delicious. Once the basics of the nutrient profile are met for a particular life-stage, taste is the most important competitive platform. High palatability means dogs like the taste, and that translates to more sales for the pet food company.

The good news about highly palatable dog food is that almost any formulation will be eaten by your dog. The downside of high palatability is the fact that many dogs will then eat more food than they need if offered all that they want. This leads to excessive weight gain and obesity. Meal feeding with portion control is a critical step in preventing overeating, excessive weight gain, and obese dogs.

Labradors are not only the most commonly overweight breed of dog, but they are notorious for being obsessed by food.

If you find that you’re feeding your dog regularly and yet he is still gazing at you with soulful (and hungry) eyes, it may be time to consider what is causing this behavior.

Why your Dog is a Glutton

A sudden increase of appetite in a dog can be a symptom of a number of conditions:

  • Aging
  • Bacterial overgrowth in the intestines
  • Cushing’s disease
  • Diabetes
  • Exocrine pancreatic insufficiency
  • Hyperthyroidism
  • Reaction to medication

In many of the above cases, the underlying mechanism leading to increased hunger is the same: your dog’s body is unable to absorb the nutrients in the food or digest it properly, so their appetite goes into overdrive. They are actually starving no matter how much food they eat, so they compensate by eating everything.

Maybe Your Dog is Not Getting Enough Food

Another answer for your dog’s feeding frenzy could be that you’re just not feeding him enough. As our dogs grow and their activities change, it is not uncommon that they need adjustments to their diets. For example, if you’ve suddenly decided to get into shape and you’re taking your dog on long walks or jogs, he is burning more energy. So, he’ll need a bit more calories to keep that energy up.

Or if you started out with an adorable puppy but now find yourself with 90 pounds of pooch, it just makes sense that he will need more food and possibly a different type of food as well. You don’t want a fat dog, but you also don’t want one who is starved.

My Dog Eats Too Fast

First, why should you be concerned with your pet’s eating speed? Because they are not chewing their food thoroughly, rapid eating can lead to choking or gagging. Also, because this type of eating behavior often is associated with greedy behavior, it can lead to aggressive behavior if another pet or person comes close while the animal is eating. In households with children or other animals, an animal that gobbles down its food can be a danger to anyone it perceives as a competitor for its food

How To Deal With a Gluttonous Dog

Prescription Dieting

One option for reducing a dog’s tendency for gluttony is to provide a larger volume of food at each meal, and additional snacks throughout the day. This sounds counter-intuitive, but the extra volume should be made up of appropriate water-based vegetables. Your veterinarian can help you decide what might work best for your dog. The most commonly recommended snack veggies are green beans, broccoli, and cauliflower. Be sure to ask your veterinarian if any of these are not appropriate choices for your dog due to their calcium content.

Trim the Treats

Cutting back on treats for a hungry dog sounds counterintuitive, but if your dog has learned to expect frequent treats, she needs to unlearn that behavior. If you use treats as rewards, try substituting play, snuggles, or other positive attention lavished on your dog as you decrease the treats offered.

Slow Feeding Bowls

There are also feeding bowls that are designed to slow an animal’s eating speed. These bowls are often made with embedded pegs in the hollow of the bowl, so that the animal cannot grab large bites all at once. Other products are made to disperse the food slowly.

The bowls come in a variety of sizes and shapes to fit different nose shapes and breeds, too.

They work just as well for wet or dry food and have practical nonslip bases.

Restrict Access

You can keep your dog out of the kitchen or dining room while you’re cooking or eating. Try putting a baby gate in the doorway. If they’re crate-trained, put them in their crate.


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