Raised Food & Water Bowls for Dogs with Joint Pain

When I observed my dogs eating from the ground, I began to realise why raising their feeding board/bowl and water source may be a good idea. Here's why...

Raising your dog’s food AND water bowl off the ground can help with arthritic pain. When eating from a bowl on the floor, dogs have to shift more weight to their front limbs. Dogs with carpal, elbow, shoulder and neck arthritis may have a more difficult time reaching down to eat or drink.

Dogs with pelvic limb OA already shift more weight to their front limbs. That means when they’re eating, they would further strain their front legs. This could potentially lead to your dog instinctively compensating by using muscles in their shoulder and neck.

Raising the bowl to the level that allows a neutral spine and minimal neck flexion will shift weight back on the pelvic limbs, which is actually a good form of exercise for dogs with pelvic limb arthritis (isometric strengthening).

TIP: The ideal level for the raised bowl is at the dog's shoulder height. There are many commercially available elevated feeders or use what you have lying around at home (eg. milk crates or plant pot stands for large dogs, small plant pots for smaller dogs).

SourceCanine Arthritis Resources & Education

 *** IMPORTANT: Raised bowls for deep chested dogs pay promote gulping of air which can increase the risk of bloat. Do your own thorough research on the latest advice on bloat prevention before raising your dogs feed bowl.