Bowl height and bloat - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 35 (permalink) Old 05-03-2018, 07:33 AM Thread Starter
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Question Bowl height and bloat

Hi there,
Recently found out from here that a raised bowl can cause bloat. My bowls aren't all the way on the floor but they're in a stand. Is this low enough to the floor or should they absolutely be flat on the ground ?
Thanks!
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post #2 of 35 (permalink) Old 05-03-2018, 10:50 AM
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I always heard that too low of bowls can cause bloat?

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post #3 of 35 (permalink) Old 05-03-2018, 10:52 AM
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I have heard that both too low and too high of bowls cause bloat. I don't think anyone actually really knows and we are all guessing.
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post #4 of 35 (permalink) Old 05-03-2018, 11:04 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by cheffjapman View Post
I always heard that too low of bowls can cause bloat?
My vet told me that too but apparently there's been new studies..

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post #5 of 35 (permalink) Old 05-03-2018, 11:24 AM
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My GSD'S have always laid down while eating when the bowl is on the floor. I had always heard too low was bad.

Now that my smaller 15 month old 70lb dog is probably at his full height I have started placing his food on the fireplace brick(i dont know what you call it). I'll try to post a photo later when he eats tonight

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post #6 of 35 (permalink) Old 05-03-2018, 09:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Arathorn II View Post
My GSD'S have always laid down while eating when the bowl is on the floor. I had always heard too low was bad.

Now that my smaller 15 month old 70lb dog is probably at his full height I have started placing his food on the fireplace brick(i dont know what you call it). I'll try to post a photo later when he eats tonight
Just FYI, The bricks around a fireplace is called the hearth.


Gandolph, that setup looks right in between not too low or high. My boy's bowl is on the floor and I stick to the 1hr rest before and after meals.
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post #7 of 35 (permalink) Old 05-04-2018, 01:29 AM
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Does bloat happen to raw fed dogs?
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post #8 of 35 (permalink) Old 05-04-2018, 08:14 AM Thread Starter
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Does bloat happen to raw fed dogs?
Yes

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post #9 of 35 (permalink) Old 05-04-2018, 10:05 AM
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I also heard that too low can cause bloat. That's why I'm in the market for raised bowls right now. I guess I'll hold off for the time being.
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post #10 of 35 (permalink) Old 05-04-2018, 10:54 AM
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Anyone who purports to know the "cause" of bloat has knowledge that the people who actually do bloat research say doesn't exist.

All we know right now is correlation -- lots and lots of correlations. Researchers are hypothesizing by extrapolating cause from correlation, but the mechanisms of how any of this might contribute to cause is presently unknown. So let's be very, very careful about claiming anything "causes" bloat. We focus instead on "risk factors," without fully knowing why or how they operate.

Further reading -- Tufts Study -- this is a great read: https://www.vin.com/apputil/content/...165&id=3848657
and
Bloat (Purdue Study) - The Institute of Canine Biology
and
https://msutoday.msu.edu/news/2013/t...iller-of-dogs/

Here's what we know:
(1) the incidence is increasing dramatically -- vets are seeing more bloated dogs than in decades past (a 500% increase from 1975 to 1995...but 1500% in the past 15 years)

(2) Genetics appears to be a factor -- increasing rates within breeds has helped them hone in on that -- and they've confirmed some "familial tendency" to bloat (so when puppy buyers track longevity of lines...pay attention to this!) -- first degree relatives of dogs that have bloated are 63% more likely to bloat themselves, per Tufts (linked above)

(3) According to Tufts researchers, lean dogs are more at risk than fat ones (yes, really!)

(4) Old dogs are more at risk than young ones (risk goes up 20% per year after age 5), again per Tufts

(5) Fast eaters are 15% more likely to bloat (again, per the Tufts study)

(6) Raised bowls increased bloat risk by 110% in the Tufts study

(7) Temperament appears to a risk factor too -- nervous/anxious/aggressive personalities are more at risk, and periods of stress are also risk factors

(8) Food appears to matter too
(a) kibble-fed dogs getting a food with fat among the first four ingredients had a 170% higher risk for developing bloat; kibble fed dogs eating foods containing citric acid and that were moistened prior to feeding had a 320% higher risk for developing bloat. (So wetting your kibble may hurt, not help...despite widespread blogger advice to the contrary.)
(b) food containing a rendered meat-and-bone meal decreased risk by 53% in comparison with the overall risk for the dogs in the study (maybe suggesting cheaper food with rendered meal might be safer...say what?!)
(c) mixing table food or canned food into dry food also decreased the risk of bloat (hmmm....that's interesting)

NOTE: Tufts didn't mention raw-fed dogs.

And Tufts blew ups some popular myths about prevention too...

There was no correlation of bloat risk to exercise before or after eating, or to vaccinations, brand of dog food consumed, or to the timing or volume of water intake before or after eating.

Last edited by Magwart; 05-04-2018 at 11:02 AM.
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