In order to properly answer the ‘how long does it take a dog to digest food’ question, it is important that we look at how the digestive system of your adorable pet functions.
As with other animals, dogs take in food through their mouth. And this food is worked on by the enzymes in the saliva.
These enzymes help to break down starch into smaller sugar molecules. The saliva also makes the passage of the food into the esophagus easy.
From the mouth, the food moves into the esophagus where digestion starts. The food is then pushed into the stomach by the esophagus muscles.
When the food gets into the stomach, the solid food that was ingested is made more liquid.
This action is carried out by the muscles in the dog’s stomach. The acidic nature of the dog’s stomach also plays an important role.
From the stomach, the liquefied food is now taken into the small intestine where the key nutrients that are to be taken into the blood stream of a dog are removed.
From the small intestine, the key nutrients are absorbed into the dog’s blood stream while the other parts of the food are sent to the large intestine (which serves as a waste collector).
The large intestine in turn separates water from the food item (recall that it is now liquefied) and then turns it into faeces which is in turn passed out of the body.
With the breakdown of how the digestive system of a dog works, we can see that the digestion process is one that is quite long as it involves a lot of processing.
What Are The Factors That Influence Digestion Time In A Dog?
The following are factors that influence digestion time in a dog:
- Health Status
- Quantity of Water
Now, let’s explain:
The particular breed of dog: Some dog breeds digest food faster than other ones.
The weight of the dog: Dogs that weigh over 25kg find it easy to digest dry food than dogs that weigh 15kg and below.
The health status of a dog: Healthy dogs generally find it easier to digest food (and in shorter times) than ill dogs.
The type of food that the dog eats: This is a very important factor that should be paid attention to. It is proven that dry foods take time to get digested than canned foods.
The quantity of water the dog takes: The volume of water that the dog takes while eating also plays an important role in the determination of the digestion time. The more the water taken, the easier the digestion.
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Bottom Line — How Long Does It Take A Dog To Digest Food
It takes a normal healthy dog between 8 and 10 hours to digest dry foods but it takes the same dog between 4 and 6 hours to digest wet dog foods.
It is also important to add that exercise could also play a vital role when it comes to digestion in dogs.
How Long Does It Take A Dog To Digest Food? — FAQs
How Long Does It Take For A Dog’s Stomach To Empty?
Your dog’s stomach should begin to empty out between 8 and 10 hours after they’ve eaten and your dog will begin to feel hunger pangs.
This is because a dog’s stomach is pretty simple. So, it usually doesn’t take too much time for food to empty out of it.
Is It Cruel To Feed A Dog Once A Day?
It isn’t the nicest idea to feed your dog only once a day, considering that your dog’s stomach would empty out in about 8 to 10 hours, .
If you think your dog needs to drop a couple of pounds, consider feeding them smaller portions twice a day instead of just once. Or better still, speak with your vet.
How Many Times A Day Should A Dog Eat?
A dog would be just fine eating twice a day, excluding the little treats they might get during the day.
However, if the family eats three(3) times a day and you want your dog to eat at the same times, that’s fine too. Just be sure to give adequate portions.
How Many Times A Day Should A Dog Poop?
Generally, dogs poop anywhere between 1 and 5 times a day. It’s really difficult to tell whether or not there is something wrong with your dog by how frequently they poop. Well, unless something has changed.
That said, if you’re concerned that your poop is not pooping often enough or they are pooping too often, speak with your vet.
Do Dogs Poop Every Time They Eat?
Whether or not a dog will poop immediately after eating usually varies from breed to breed and sometimes even dog to dog.
However, generally, dogs poop anywhere within 30 minutes after they’ve eaten. This is not saying that they only poop after they’ve eaten, though. Hence the need for your dog to be potty trained.
How Long Should I Wait To Take My Dog Out After Eating?
Vets generally recommend that you wait about an hour or even two after your dog has eaten to take them on a walk.
Interestingly, you shouldn’t also be feeding your dog immediately after a walk. This time, you want to wait between 30 minutes and an hour after walking your dog to feed him.