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The Difference Between a Puzzle Feeder and a Slow Bowl

by Dennis ODonnell on April 29, 2020

Slow bowls and puzzle feeders are similar products in that they are both designed to change the way dogs consume their food. But the products are very different in their design, function and benefits.

The goal of a slow bowl is to slow down the eating process by including obstacles in the bowl, like ridges and bumps, that the dog has to work around in order to get to their meal. The intent behind the various slow bowl designs is to provide a healthy solution for dogs who eat too fast or gulp their food, and suffer from the resulting digestive issues.

Puzzle feeders like the Rock ‘N Bowl, on the other hand, enrich the mealtime experience by building off dogs’ natural feeding behaviors:

  • Dogs are wired to hunt and forage for their food – it’s in their DNA. So having their food served to them on a silver platter (ie. a regular food bowl) doesn’t allow them to use their brains to creatively problem solve and “work” for their food.
  • Hunting and foraging take both mental and physical exertion. And while a puzzle feeder isn’t going to cause dogs to break a sweat, it is going to have them on their feet, using their eye-paw coordination to knock, rock, nudge and play their food free.
  • Instead of reducing the rate of consumption through the use of frustrating obstacles, puzzle feeders apply the concept of play to slow mealtime down, providing the secondary benefit of a healthier rate of consumption.

So, although both bowls do slow a dog down, puzzle feeders build off of their natural behaviors and instincts, turning a 30-second chow down into an engaging, thought-provoking, playtime puzzle.


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