For the dog, crushing little food he eats is an evolutionary strategy inherited from his cousin, the wolf
- Author: By EVA SAN MARTÍN
- Last updated: August 17, 2015
The dog still retains some wild instincts of his ancestor the wolf. Among them, the dog maintains the habit of swallow food without chewing, a strategy to survive in nature, since it allows you to eat faster and faster. But, Why can the dog swallow food without getting sick and we can't? In any case, it is convenient to differentiate what a natural behavior is from dangers of eating fast for the dog. This article explains these keys, in addition to guidelines to make the dog eat more slowly.
Why the dog swallows food without chewing
A dog does not understand good human manners and swallows his food to be the fastest
A dog that throws itself on a bowl of tasty food and kills him in a matter of minutes. Why is it possible? Regarding food, dogs do not understand manners and what could be considered a bad habit, and little refined, for most people, however, it is a habitual behavior in the world of dogs. He dog does not chew, swallows. It is a survival strategy that still retains, inherited from its ancestor the wolf, according to the canine veterinarian and dietitian Carlos Gutierrez, author of the Dog Nutritionist blog.
"The dog, like the wolf, does not chew, swallows. It does so to be the first of the pack to take the food and eat more," says the specialist in dog food. Although at home the need to compete for food disappears for a dog that lives alone, the behavior of its ancestors persists: it has not been erased in most dogs "and it will take decades to disappear," Gutierrez adventure.
In the center of nature, being the first to get a food is no joke. When this is scarce, a wolf should try to get ahead and do it not only to his peers but, sometimes, also to other species - such as scavengers - that dispute his bite.
Under these circumstances, swallow the food without crushing it, it is more efficient than chewing and, above all, faster. "The dog maintains the wild instinct to think that, after a meal, he can spend several days without eating food. So he swallows everything he can, he doesn't chew," Gutierrez explains.
Why the dog can swallow food without getting sick
The esophagus of a can can dilate up to five times to allow food to transit
The digestive system of a dog is better prepared than the human to eat large pieces of food without getting sick. This is so because your esophagus, the muscular tube that connects the pharynx with your stomach, has an extraordinary ability to dilate and expand, so that it allows the food pieces to transit.
"The esophagus opens five times more than that of a person as the food passes," explains the veterinarian. This mechanism, like its distant cousin the wolf, allows eat no need to chew or crush food before. In addition, the can digestive system is usually prepared to attack the food that enters your body: it has powerful gastric juices capable of slowly breaking up food.
The dangers of eating fast for the dog
A domestic dog accustomed to devouring without chewing, however, runs some risks. Among others, ingest more food than you need. An urban house does not resemble the wild environment and, in the absence of a pack, competition for the bite also disappears. It is the owner who must ensure that your animal does not accumulate more fat than you need. "The problem is not that the dog swallows without chewing," says Gutierrez, "but the amount of food he eats."
This mismatch between what you eat and what you spend is the "main cause of obesity in dogs," concludes the European Veterinary Conference, which meets every year in the Dutch city of Amsterdam. It is necessary to differentiate between what is a natural behavior in the dog (to swallow) and what is a gluttony, capable of leading to overweight problems.
The equation between intake and energy consumption is broken when the animal is supercharged. This is the case of voracious appetite dogs, who ask for food at all hours and never seem to satisfy their hunger. Between 20% and 40% of dogs suffer from excessive fatness That compromises your health.
However, owners do not always perceive being overweight in their own pet. Only three out of ten people admit their dog's obesity, according to a study from the University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, led by Professor José Alberto Montoya and published in the scientific journal 'Journal of Animal Physiology and Animal Nutrition'.
Guidelines to make the dog eat more slowly
For a dog, swallowing its ration without just crushing it can be a natural behavior. But this does not imply that some dogs are fed excessively or at a faster rate than is healthy. It is worth taking into account some keys so that the dog ingested his food, at least a little, calmer.
1. Combine your I think with natural food, such as chicken or eggs, reduces the dog's anxiety during the day. Natural foods help you get serotonin, a neurotransmitter that reduces nervousness. Veterinary nutritionist Carlos Gutiérrez recommends doing it at least once a week.
2. Stress and anxiety cause eating disorders of the dog and, sometimes, excessive food intake. You have to watch the pet.
3. Long walks and games are the best way to ensure that your dog performs the physical activity he needs.
4. The calorie intake of the dog should not exceed the amount of energy spent.
Why don't dogs chew food?
It is essential that you know and understand better why dogs do not chew food without getting sick. Think that is part of your instinct and is something that It is innate in them. But you have to be careful, because there are cases in which in addition to not chewing, they eat very fast And that can be detrimental to your health.
To not worry you have to know that a dog's esophagus is flexible and can increase and expand up to 5 times its size, to allow food to pass into larger pieces without any problem and without causing any disease.
In addition the dog's stomach has gastric juices that are very important in this process of digestion. So don't worry.
When your dog doesn't chew on instinct
As we mentioned earlier, there are dogs that in addition to not chewing they eat very fast, which can cause problems such as obesity, since they would eat more food. Remember that dogs no longer live in freedom, nor do they have to dispute food to survive, in these cases it is already the owners of the dogs who have to watch over them.
Swallowing without chewing is not a problem, the problem is to get to ingest more than necessary, producing a mismatch between what you eat and the energy you spend. That's why you have to follow some guidelines to avoid that speed and nervousness when chewing.
The risks of eating fast
Our dogs no longer have to fight for survival, so even if they don't pose a danger to their health eating without chewing, they can have Some risks to your body if you eat fast.
Our pets are already domesticated and if they eat more food than necessary, because of how quickly they eat them, may suffer from obesity and that they accumulate more fat than they need, causing them serious health problems.
That is why it is necessary that keep an eye on your pet, see how he eats, whether or not he chews food, if he eats fast and nervously, if you eat more food from the bill, etc. It is also important that you observe if your dog gains more weight than normal.
Get your dog to eat more slowly and chew food
It is important that in these cases combine your feed with natural food, be it chicken, egg, This will reduce the anxiety of the dog during the day by providing serotonin, a great ally to combat nervousness.
It may happen that your dog has this way of eating because of nervousness or stress. So we recommend that you provide your pet with a relaxed atmosphere without shouting, discussions and tranquility predominates. This way you will ensure that your dog is not nervous and causes eating disorders.
Give your dog the exercise you need daily, play with it, take it for a walk and to do physical activity during the day, so the dog will have less nervousness at the time of eating.
Another factor that you have to take into account is the calories that your dog ingests and that does not exceed those he spends. It is very important that your dog enjoys good health and a healthy physical appearance, which you will get with a good diet and exercise. For this you must Control the whims you give your pet.