Best slow feeder cat bowl 2024 to aid digestion

Cat eating out of one of the best slow feeder cat bowls
(Image credit: Amazon)

Investing in the best slow feeder cat bowl is well worth considering if you have a feline friend who tends to inhale their food the moment you put it down in front of them.

As the name suggests, slow feeder bowls are designed to help your kitty eat at a more relaxed pace. Suitable for both the best dry cat food and the best wet cat food, slow feeder bowls can help reduce the risk of bloating and vomiting. Plus, they’re also a wonderful tool when it comes to weight management.

If you’ve been asking the question ‘Is my cat overweight?’, cat behaviorist Marjan Debevere says slow feeders can reduce the risk of obesity and overeating. “When a cat eats slower, it allows the brain to register that it’s full earlier than if it was eating out of a normal bowl, therefore eating less.” 

So, whether you’re looking for a way to keep your kitty’s waistline in tip-top shape or you’re wondering what to do if your cat is throwing up, our roundup of the best slow feeder cat bowls has got you covered. 

Marjan Debevere
Marjan Debevere

Marjan is a qualified (ADip FBM), certified, vet-referred cat behaviorist based in North London. She studied Feline Behaviour & Psychology at Compass Education and qualified with a distinction in December 2019. She specializes in feline behavior as cats are her passion and the species she is most in tune with. You can follow her on Instagram at lillmanlulu_luigi_and_co

PetsRadar's pick of the best slow feeder cat bowls

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Y YHY Slow Feeder Cat Bowl

(Image credit: Amazon)

Y YHY Slow Feeder Cat Bowl

Best overall slow feeder cat bowl

Specifications

Color: Black and white
Material: Ceramic
Weight: 1.61lbs
Size: 2.75” x 5.3”

Reasons to buy

+
Large and stable bottom
+
Raised and slanted design to prevent vomiting
+
Reduces neck burden

Reasons to avoid

-
Breaks easily if dropped
WHAT CAT OWNERS SAY

Awarded 4.6 out of five stars on Amazon, pet owners highly recommend this bowl when it comes to helping their cats to keep their food down. People love that the mouth of the bowl is nice and wide, the maze is not too deep and it’s easy to clean. However, buyers do state that the bowl breaks easily if dropped.

A high-quality and affordable slow-feeder bowl, the Y YHY Cat Slow Feeder takes out our top spot in this guide thanks to the clever raised and slanted design that improves digestion and reduces vomiting.

We love that this bowl creates a more natural eating position, allowing the spine to stay in alignment and the food to travel more easily from the mouth down into the digestive system. It also reduces neck burden, making it ideal for cats who suffer from arthritis or other mobility issues.

Made from sturdy ceramic which doesn’t get scratched like plastic bowls do and is, therefore, more hygienic, this bowl prevents black chin and is dishwasher safe, making it a breeze to keep clean. 

The bowl is nice and wide, which is what cats prefer, and the maze is deep enough to be challenging but not so deep that your cat will find it too difficult and give up. The bottom is also super stable, which will prevent your feline friend from pushing it around. 

Lickimat Casper & Felix - Fish-Shaped Cat Slow FeederPets Radar Approved Award

(Image credit: Amazon)

Lickimat Felix

Best budget slow feeder cat bowl

Specifications

Color: Green, Orange, Turquoise
Material: Silicone
Weight: 0.175lbs
Size: 8.7" x 6.3"

Reasons to buy

+
Good for wet food
+
Choice of designs and colors
+
Inexpensive

Reasons to avoid

-
Difficult to clean
WHAT CAT OWNERS SAY

Cat owners are impressed with how lightweight this slow feeder is while still being sturdy and that it provides a good level of challenge for their feline friends without being too difficult. With 4.3 stars on Amazon, the one frequently cited drawback is how tricky it is to clean. 

This is a slow feeder with a difference. You won't find a bowl with ridges to slow down feeding times. What you will find is a bright, fish-shaped mat with ribs and ridges everywhere to help enrich - and slow down - the feeding experience and relieve boredom and anxiety at the same time. 

Neatly named Casper and Felix you have the choice of two mat designs and the option of three colors - green, orange, and turquoise. Both mat designs have a low profile and provide an intricate selection of small and larger sections where you can add your fur friend’s favorite food. Casper is the more complicated of the two and provides more of a challenge, which makes it ideal for adult cats. 

If you have a kitten - or you want an easier challenge for your adult cat - the Felix design is the better choice. It has wider areas to place food which is easier to pick up.  Designed for wet and dry food it has varying degrees of success. The combination of ridges, sections, soft rubber, and low profile make these mats a great choice for spreading out wet food. The low profile helps leave whiskers untouched and slows down the eating process. 

Dry food is not so great. It doesn’t provide such a challenge and doesn’t do so much to slow down your kitty’s eating speed. It’s easier to clean if only used with dry food, but if using wet food it's a lot more work to get into the crevices to get the food residue. And it's not dishwasher-safe, so you’ll need to wash it by hand. 

Lorde Slow Feeder Cat BowlPets Radar Approved Award

(Image credit: Amazon)

Lorde Slow Feeder Cat Bowls

Best ceramic slow feeder cat bowl

Specifications

Color: White
Material: Ceramic
Weight: 1.72lbs
Size: 8.7" x 1.6"

Reasons to buy

+
Heavy duty
+
Easy to clean
+
Challenging design

Reasons to avoid

-
May be too large for small cats
WHAT CAT OWNERS SAY

Pet owners feel that this bowl works well for their cats when it comes to slowing down their eating and comment on how heavy duty and durable it is. With 4.3 stars on Amazon, the one thing people aren’t so keen on is how big it is, with many feeling it’s far too large for cats. 

Not a fan of plastic? Want a longer-lasting heavy-duty ceramic finish just like the bowls you have in your cupboard? Then this simple slow feeder could just be the design for you. 

Made from high-quality, non-toxic, lead, and cadmium-free ceramic material the bowl is pet-friendly and odor-free, meaning the only smell you will get from the bowl is whatever cat food you put in it. And when you do have to wash it you can stick it in the dishwasher without worrying about ruining the bowl. 

This is not a small or lightweight bowl - it's nearly 9 inches wide and is a hefty 1.72 pounds- so it’s ideal for larger cats and even small dogs. The weight ensures that the feeder doesn’t get pushed around too much. But there are no anti-slip pads on the bottom of the bowl, so it can scratch your floor. Put it on a rubber feeding mat and you will see very little movement - or none at all - and you’ll protect your floor. 

There is a load of smooth fish-shaped ridges - so they won’t scratch your cat's tongue and mouth - that vary in height. The outer ridges are smaller than those in the middle with the tallest hitting 1.6 inches. This adds variety when feeding and gives a challenge to your fur friends, which will ultimately slow down their eating. Though the larger ridges may be too much of a challenge if you have a small or flat face cat. 

Y YHY Slow Feeder Cat BowlPets Radar Approved Award

(Image credit: Amazon)

Y YHY Slow Feeder Cat Bowl

Best anti-vomit slow feeder cat bowl

Specifications

Color: Gray and white
Material: Ceramic
Weight: 2.89lbs
Size: 10.24" x 8.54" x 6.77"

Reasons to buy

+
Stylish look
+
Raised design prevents spillages
+
Sturdy

Reasons to avoid

-
Shallow design
WHAT CAT OWNERS SAY

Giving this product 4.4 stars on Amazon, buyers find that the grooves on this bowl are just right for holding both wet and dry food. They also note how sturdy, big and stable the bowl is, although some do note that they wish it were deeper. 

Is it a slow feeder? Is it an anti-vomit bowl? Well, actually, it's both! We're loving this tilted and elevated cat food bowl with its generous 4.4" height that works to beautifully align the neck and spine to create a more comfortable and natural feeding position. 

The stylish and sturdy ceramic design features a fish bone down the middle which traps wet and dry food in a variety of places to prolong your moggy's meal time, prevent bloat and reduce the burden of food passing into the stomach.

Because the food is dispersed between so many columns, slow eating is guaranteed and this will also mean less digestive distress and less episodes of vomiting after meals, if your kitty is prone to that. 

This raised bowl is a real spill saver, preventing food from being flicked all over the floor and the 6.3-inch sturdy base has its own anti-slip function, so you can rest assured that this bowl will stay firmly in place while your moggy enjoys their meal. 

Upgraded Slow Feeder Cat BowlPets Radar Approved Award

(Image credit: Amazon)

Upgraded Slow Feeder Cat Bowls

Best long slow feeder cat bowl

Specifications

Color: White
Material: ABS
Weight: 0.36lbs
Size: 11.8" x 5.9" x 1.8"

Reasons to buy

+
Longer length for two cats
+
Anti-skid pads
+
No sharp edges

Reasons to avoid

-
Low rim 
WHAT CAT OWNERS SAY

With 4.3 stars on Amazon, many pet parents find this bowl highly efficient in preventing both quick eating and vomiting after meals. People love that it can go in the dishwasher for easy cleaning, but some would prefer a bigger rim to prevent kibble from ending up on the floor. 

Cat bowls are round, aren’t they? Well, this one isn’t. This slow feeder cat bowl takes a slight detour from the standard circular bowl design and offers a rectangular style design. This gives more surface to spread your fur friends’ favorite food and ultimately stop them gulping down their dinner far too quickly. 

Measuring 11.8 inches in length, 5.9 inches in width, and 1.7 inches in height it is perfectly sized to allow two cats to feed at the bowl at the same time. There are four anti-skid pads on the bottom of the bowl to prevent it from slipping away while your cat is trying to get their paws and jaws on its tasty treats.

The bowl boasts a host of attractive fish-shaped obstructions which are typical of any good cat slow feeder. These slow down the consumption of any food which improves digestion and can help stop your kitty cat from choking. 

They are specifically designed with a smooth rounded surface, so no sharp edges to scratch your cat’s mouth and tongue. At just over an inch they are ideal for assisting with slow eating and add a little interactivity for your fur friend who can flip out any dry food to eat it. Once again slowing down eating speed, and adding a little fun.  

The eco-friendly slow feeder is made from food-safe, non-toxic, pet-friendly, strong, and durable ABS plastic. And to keep the bowl as germ-free as possible it is dishwasher-safe. So, no need to get your rubber gloves on. 

Biubiucat Elevated Cat Slow Feeder BowlPets Radar Approved Award

(Image credit: Amazon)

Biubiucat Elevated Cat Slow Feeder Bowl

Best versatile slow feeder cat bowl

Specifications

Color: White
Material: ABS
Weight: 1.83lbs
Size: 14.13" x 8.34" x 2.75"

Reasons to buy

+
Comes with six bowls
+
Includes an anti-spill tray
+
Easy to clean

Reasons to avoid

-
Water bowl smaller than we'd like
WHAT CAT OWNERS SAY

Praising the sturdiness, the catch tray for kibble, and the quality, buyers have awarded this product 4.3 stars and have noted a great deal of improvement in their cat’s eating habits since they started using it. However, one drawback appears to be the depth, with some saying they’d like the ridges to be higher.

If you're looking for a slow feeder cat bowl that ticks multiple boxes, you shouldn't look much further than this. As well as providing a bowl with a reasonably complicated pattern capable of separating food into eight “compartments”, it comes on a set of legs which raises the feeder to a more comfortable, natural level for your cat. 

This puts less strain on your kitty's neck which is particularly important if they're going to be taking as long as 20 minutes to eat, as the manufacturer suggests. By placing your pet in a more relaxing position, it should also result in less mess – although a useful tray surrounding the bowl is sure to catch most of the drops in a sign that the maker has really thought this product through.

In fact, sitting beside the food bowl is a water bowl, making for a tidy all-in-one product. Although it's a little smaller than we'd like, offering water is important, more so if you're feeding cats with moisture-less kibble. To help ensure the water doesn't spill, the entire unit has non-slip pats on the bottom so it won't keep moving around. If you're looking for neatness and practicality then you can't really go wrong here!

Indeed, what you see in the picture is only half the story because this feeder actually has six bowls in total. Not only does this make for a flexible system that will work for multiple cats or for adjusting the height as your cat grows older, it also makes the unit easier to clean, with all of the components easily coming apart.

Catit Senses 2.0 Digger slow feeder cat bowl

(Image credit: Amazon)

Catit Senses 2.0 Digger

Best interactive slow feeder cat bowl

Specifications

Color: White and green
Material: BPA-free plastic
Weight: 1lb
Size: 9.5 x 5.7 x 9.5 inches

Reasons to buy

+
Multiple tubes to stimulate natural pawing behavior
+
Easy to disassemble and clean
+
Rubber mat secures feeder in place

Reasons to avoid

-
Green cups are not attached
WHAT CAT OWNERS SAY

Cat owners love that this product is both a great way to slow their fur friends eating down and a fun game that keeps them amused. Buyers like that it helps their cats to burn off energy and challenge their brains, but they do wish the green cups were attached to prevent their cats from tipping them over - hence the 4.3 star rating on Amazon. 

Slow your feline friends eating and keep them entertained at the same time with this brilliant interactive feeder from Catit. Featuring multiple tubes that stimulate natural pawing behavior, your kitty will be kept entertained for ages as they work to gain access to the dry kibble and treats hidden in the tubes.

The tubes come in two different shapes to vary the degree of difficulty, so it's ideal if you're looking for a way to challenge your beloved bundle of fluff and give them a good mental workout. 

We love the rubber mat underneath the feeder which helps to create a wide and stable base that won't move around when your cat is using it, and it's also easy to disassemble and clean. 

Made from BPA-free plastic, this slow feeder is best suited to small and medium sized cats, as bigger breeds, like the Maine Coon, may find it impossible to get their paws into the tubes. 

Best slow feeder cat bowl: FAQs

How to choose the best slow feeder cat bowl

What makes a great slow feeder cat bowl depends very much on your cat, but the size is definitely important. If you have a small cat or a kitten, you don’t need a bowl that is five times the size of its head and easy to eat from. This will do little to help with slowing down how fast your feline friend eats. A 5-inch bowl is good for kittens and small cats. Try something bigger for larger cats.

Then you need to think about the shape. Most bowls are circular and have edges which can mean your cat’s whiskers will get in the way when eating. If this bothers your cat then you want to think about getting a flatter style bowl. But this then brings the issue of spillage. So you will need to choose what works best for you and your cat. 

The pattern inside the bowl is important. If you need a simple slow feeder then choose something with a few ridges on the bowl. Also, consider the height of the ridges. Too high and it will be difficult for your cat to eat and they may lose interest in their food. 

If you want more of a challenge choose a puzzle feeder to add interactivity and interest to mealtimes. Finally, choose something that is easy to clean, and if you have a dishwasher consider one that is dishwasher safe. 

Are slow feeders good for cats?

While a lot of pet parents choose to invest in a slow feeder cat bowl to reduce the risk that their feline friend will experience digestive disturbances, Debevere points out that this isn’t the only benefit that a slow feeder bowl can offer.

“Slow feeders can also provide mental stimulation, especially if a challenging puzzle feeder is chosen,” she says. “Depending on the design, there are different levels of difficulty to obtain the food. A cat whose brain is encouraged to problem solve will be much less bored and will keep his mind sharp. A bored cat can very quickly become a frustrated and destructive cat. Providing them with a puzzle feeder will go some way toward the mental and emotional wellbeing of your cat. Slow feeders offer the opportunity for your cat to act on their hard-wired instincts to hunt and to fulfill their most essential survival instinct.”

Debevere says that not all slow feeder bowls are designed for cats, so it’s important to check the label carefully to ensure you aren’t getting one that’s meant for a dog. She also explains that how you introduce your cat to their new bowl is crucial, as is considering the age and stage of your feline friend.

“As cats are creatures of routine and predictability, a change of bowl can cause stress so consider making the change really gradually. Cats who have a history of not eating consistently are most likely not in need of a slow feeder and best left to eat their main meals from the bowl they know and love. Slow feeders are not suitable for elderly cats with mobility and dexterity issues, picky eaters and diabetic cats.”

Do slow feeder bowls work?

“Slow feeders are bowls or puzzles designed to keep pets from eating too quickly or too much which can lead to indigestion and vomiting,” Debevere explains. “Frequent vomiting is never a normal behavior and requires veterinary attention. The purpose of slow feeders is to reduce the amount of food taken in within one sitting so it’s important not to overfill the feeder. Slower eating reduces bloating, and aids digestion and nutrient absorption. Therefore reducing the risk of vomiting. 

Another way to reduce vomiting is by using an anti-vomit cat bowl which is specifically designed to reduce vomiting. It is tilted and elevated in a way that prevents vomiting. It’s designed to stop the cat from taking in too much air whilst eating and thus cut down on vomiting. Anti-vomit cat bowls can also be used as water dishes and can be especially useful with flat-faced breeds and senior arthritic cats or those wearing a “cone of shame”.

An anti-vomit bowl is easy on the cat’s digestive system and promotes a healthy posture during mealtime, reducing neck strain and “whisker fatigue", a stressful condition that arises from too much friction between the whiskers and the high side of a food bowl.”

How we selected the best slow feeder cat bowls

Size: We made sure to avoid very deep bowls that your cat would struggle to get their food out of and instead opted for wider and shallower options to prevent whisker fatigue and promote a more enjoyable eating experience.

Style: To give you the widest variety of choice, we tried to include a range of slow feeder bowls including mats, puzzles, and elevated options. We also took into account the shape, choosing models with a higher rim where possible to prevent spillage and mess.

Material: Black chin is a common problem amongst cats who eat from plastic bowls as these can become scratched, allowing bacteria to form. Many slow feeders are made from plastic and these are often the more affordable option, so we’ve included these in our guide for those on a budget. However, we’ve also selected a range of more hygienic feeders made from ceramic and silicone.