The Dangers of Free Feeding Dogs

Acabonac Farms |

Are you free feeding your dog? Free feeding means leaving your dog’s food in a bowl, accessible to them for hours at a time, if not all day long. On the contrary, scheduled feeding means feeding your dog at specific pre-determined times throughout the day, when your dog eats their meal entirely during the feeding time. So, which method is better for your dog?

Free feeding is an extremely popular method of feeding because, well, it’s easier. But what is easier is rarely what is optimal. Free feeding has been a feeding method of choice for busy pet parents because it ensures their pets always have food, and never go hungry. Sounds like a good premise, right? In reality, free feeding can become the root of several health, hygiene, and training issues.

Portion Control & Weight Gain

First of all, granting access to food all day long can easily lead to obesity in dogs. Just like humans, portion control is very important. If given the chance, dogs can and will consistently overeat, and if no changes are made to prevent this, the weight will begin to inevitably pile on.

A Key Health Indicator

The reason many owners choose to free feed is because it is hand’s off. This inherently causes a disconnection between you and your dog’s eating habits. A change in how often and how much your dog is eating is often the first indication of a health problem. By doing scheduled feeding, you are able to reliably keep tabs on your dog’s health.


Food, of any kind, that is left to sit out for long periods of time, is at risk of being found by other hungry critters such as bugs and mice. Dog food left in bowls is an open invitation for pests of all kinds to come into your home and take advantage of the free feast. This isn’t good news for the cleanliness of your home or your dog’s health. Additionally, unattended food can get wet and go bad if left out for too long.

Valuable Training Opportunities Lost

Food is the number one motivator when it comes to dog training. By leaving food out and in the open for your dogs to eat at any time, you’re leaving intensely valuable opportunities for training on the table.

Make Mealtime Meaningful

Scheduled feeding allows dog owners to be more in tune with their dog’s life. Mealtime can be a bonding experience between you and your furry friend while also allowing you to train and instill good behavior daily and stay on top of their health.

Acabonac Pet is built upon the premise that dog food can and should be more. More nutritious, more delicious, and more meaningful. Our raw dog food recipes are hand crafted by pet food experts and are meant to be enjoyed intentionally. Made from over 65% pure meat, alongside a nutritious vegetable, fruit, vitamin, and mineral mix, Acabonac Pet food checks all the boxes so you can be assured your dog is getting the most out of mealtime. Our prepackaged, pre-portioned meals make scheduled feeding easy, and our delivery service saves busy pet owners time and effort. Check out some of our recipes and build a personalized meal plan for your dog today!