If you’re new to owning a dog and you want to make sure everything is right for it, you’ve probably been going crazy for the last 1-2 weeks or so buying all sorts of accessories and taking the dog to the vet for its mandatory check-ups. One of the things you absolutely mustn’t forget when you’re out shopping for the dog’s necessities is to pick a proper bowl for it that will be easy to use and be built to last indefinitely.

The choice may seem simple enough, but there are actually quite a lot of options to consider. For example, many new dog owners wrongly believe that the size of a dog’s bowl should be dictated entirely by how much it eats. However, the proper way to make that choice is to consider the dog’s size and not the amount of food you’re going to put into the bowl. Smaller dogs would need a smaller bowl to feed more comfortably, even if they tend to eat more in a single meal.

Whether you’ll go with a metal or ceramic bowl is entirely up to you – both have more or less the same advantages and disadvantages, the only difference being that ceramic bowls are obviously a lot more fragile and should be treated carefully. This means that if you’ve got an energetic, playful dog and you rarely find its bowl where you left it after it’s done feeding, it may be a better idea to get a sturdy metal bowl to ensure nothing happens to it.

Sometimes, the regular old dog bowl design won’t cut it. If you have a larger dog and you want to ensure its comfort while also giving yourself less of a mess to clean up afterwards, it can be wise to invest in an elevated feeder. This is basically a mini-table that holds your dog’s bowl, and allows it to comfortably eat with the bowl at its head level without having to bend down so much – and the comfort subsequently allows it to eat more efficiently and without spreading the food around so much.

Elevated feeders are also more comfortable for dogs with long ears, as with a regular bowl, the dog’s ears tend to constantly fall down inside the bowl and prevent the dog from eating comfortably. This is never a problem with an elevated feeder though, so think from your dog’s perspective and ensure its comfort.