While your dog may not care from what type of material their bowl was made of, it’s still our responsibility as a dog parent to provide what’s best for them.
Some dog bowls are made from the materials that are safer than others, while some are downright dangerous.
If you’re thinking about buying a new dog bowl, the stainless steel dog bowl is the best dog bowl that any dog parent should buy for a number of reasons.
Let’s take a look at what makes stainless steel dog bows the best buy while recommending top rated stainless steel dog bowls, which include:
Stainless Steel Dog Bowls Compared to Other Materials
Stainless steel dog bowls are safe to use because unlike the other materials — ceramic, aluminum, plastic — stainless steel bowls don’t interact with food or water that your dog consumes.
Ceramic Dog Bowls
Take a look, for example, ceramic dog bowls. Sure they are pretty, but they can be hazardous to your dog’s health. The glazes used to coat the dog bowls can contain lead or other harmful chemicals that are a highly potent toxin.
This lead accumulates in the dog’s body and over a long period of use can cause lead poisoning with symptoms ranging from vomiting and diarrhea to seizure and blindness.
The only way for ceramic dog bowls to be safe is if the bowls are fired with high enough temperature during the making. But there is no way you would know that, so it’s better to err on the safe side by not using them at all.
Aluminum Dog Bowls
Most dog parents prefer aluminum dog bowls because they are light and won’t rust. However, in spite of the bowls’ versatility, aluminum bowls can be harmful to your dog.
Aluminum is a neurotoxin that leaches into the dog food and targets the dog’s lung, bones, and central nervous system. Even though not immediately noticeable, but over a long period of use, the effect will start to become apparent.
Plastic Dog Bowls
Plastic bowls can contain a number of dangerous substances; the famous one is BPA.
BPA stands for Bisphenol A (BPA) is a common industrial chemical that is used to make polycarbonate plastic and epoxy resins. Both are used to make many plastic products such as plastic bowls, water bottles, dog toys, etc.
So far, no extensive study has been done to quantify the impact of BPA on the dogs’ health. However, for humans, several studies have been conducted.
According to one study from the National Toxicology Program, constant exposure to BPA on humans can lead to multiple health problems, including behavioral problems, cognitive disorders, diabetes, respiratory problems, cancer, and so on.
If BPA possesses such a treat on humans, we can assume it holds the same risk as well to our dogs, if not more.
Even if the chemicals in the plastic bowl proven to be safe, your dog can get still a life-threatening emergency, they can chew the plastic bowl, break it, and ingest chunks of the sharp edge pieces.
Stoneware Dog Bowls
Unless tested on labs, you will never know which stoneware bowls contain lead and which is not; therefore, it’s best to avoid them too.
What are The Other benefits of Stainless Steel Dog Bowls?
Aside from being “chemically” safe, stainless steel dog bowls are incredibly durable.
You can drop, bang, and step on them, and still, they won’t break. You’ll also have a peace of mind, because unlike the plastic bowls, even if your dog is the most hardcore chewer around the block, they won’t be able to chomp the bowl into pieces.
They are non-porous; this means they have high resistance against corrosion and discourage bacteria from growing.
And they are easy to clean, you can toss them in the dishwater, and there is no risk of them breaking like the plastic or the ceramic bowls would.
That’s not to say that stainless steel bowls are perfect, there are some downsides, of course.
One of the downsides is when heated under the sun, stainless steel bows can boil up faster than any other type of bowls.
Also when you look at them, well, there are not many variations between one brand to the next.
However, suffice to say, a stainless steel dog bowl is a better option than the others.
How to Choose the Best Stainless Steel Dog Bowls?
Stainless steel dog bowls come in many different sizes for smaller, medium, to large dogs. You would want to get a dog bowl that has enough capacity to accommodate your dog’s serving size.
Not only sizes, but stainless steel dog bowls also come in different styles and colors. Feel free to choose the one that fits your personal taste.
For extra safety, you would also want to look for stainless steel bowls that have been tested for lead, mercury, and cadmium.
For convenience, we would also like to look for some additional functionality features such as the non-skid bottom, handles on the side, and lids to cover the dog’s leftover food.
Different Types of Dog Bowl
Today’s stainless steel dog bowls have been created with different techniques and designs to serve different purposes. Three types of dog bowl that we will cover here are:
1.Basic Dog Bowl
This is the dog bowl that you often see in the pet section at your local department store.
2. Slow-Feed Dog Bowl
A slow-feed dog bowl is used to prevent your dog from eating their foods to quickly.
This bowl is a good option for dogs that are prone to bloat also called gastric dilation volvulus, a severe condition that can be deadly in dogs.
Any dog can have bloat, but it’s much more commonly seen in large, deep-chested dogs like German Shepherds.
3. Elevated Dog Bowl
The elevated dog bowl consists of some stand to raise it off the floor. This bowl is beneficial for older dogs with arthritis, orthopedic conditions, and spinal or joint problems.
Because of the elevated position, your dog doesn’t need to lay down to eat their foods, which will be difficult for dogs with arthritis or hip dysplasia.
Another benefit is since their head is more raised as they eat from the standing position, the gravity will help to push their food naturally down the throat. This will prevent the foods from accumulating all at once in the stomach and thus minimizing the risk of bloat.
Top 5 Highest Rated Stainless Steel Dog Bowls
We’ve looked at some top-selling stainless steel dog bowls on the market and selected five. Here are our reviews with some pros and cons for each bowl.
1. Our Top Choice: Basis Pet Stainless Steel Dog Bowls
- Made in the USA from 18/8 U.S. Stainless Steel
- Independently tested for lead, mercury, and cadmium
The Basis Pet Dog Bowl (link to Amazon) is our top choice for the best stainless steel dog bowl. It has a simple design and sturdy construction. You will be surprised at how strong the bowl is.
One dog parent reported on Amazon.com that even after 23 months of usage the bowl still looked excellent just like the first time he bought it with no dents or dings found.
Speaking of safety, the manufacturer had even gone so far as testing every batch of their 304 bowls at an independent lab to verify the occurrence of lead, mercury, and cadmium. All of the results came back negative!
2. Best Non-Skid Stainless Steel Dog Bowl: URPOWER Dog Bowls
- Full Dinner Set - Set of 2 Dog Bowls (26.46 OZ for each bowl). Works as a full dinner set with food and water for one. Perfect for pets up to 70lbs.
- Non-Skidding & Flipping - Silicone stand keeps the bowl from skidding on the floor and doesn’t slide all over the place when your dog is eating.
The URPOWER dog bowl (link to Amazon) is an excellent choice if your dog seems unable to eat or drink without spilling their food everywhere. This bowl has a non-spill non-skid silicone mat that keeps the bowl from sliding around all over the place and catches any spill from going onto the floor.
Dog parents who used this no-skid bowl were impressed with the level of grip provided by the rubber pad. People also said this bowl is super easy to fill and clean, and dishwater safe.
There were mixed reviews on the quality of the stainless steel used. Some customers wrote that they didn’t see any sign of rusting after using the bowls for months, yet a few customers said their bowls began to rust after some time.
3. Best Slow-Feed Stainless Steel Dog Bowl: NEATER PET BRANDS Slow Feed Bowls
- CAPACITY - Holds roughly 4 cups of food
- SLOWS DOWN EATING - Slows Rapid Eating, Reduces Vomiting, Improves Digestion, aids in weight management.
If you want to slow down your dog from gobbling up their food too quickly and eliminate the gas issue, the Nearest Pet Brands slow feed bowl (link to Amazon) is the best option.
On average, many customers who used this bowl said that their dogs went from eating two cups of food in 30 seconds to 2 minutes. They were also commented that the bowl is sturdy and fits perfectly in most elevated feeders.
You might be concerned that the bowl doesn’t have any silicone or rubber on the bottom to keep it from sliding. But since this bowl is designed to be used with raised stationary feeders in the first place, you might want to opt to skip those non-skid bottom features this time.
4. Best Stainless Steel Elevated Dog Bowl: PetFusion Elevated Dog Bowls
- BENEFITS OF ANODIZED ALUMINUM: (I) More corrosion resistant than most grades of stainless steel. (II) Color infused so will not chip. (III) Long lasting, light weight, and easy to clean
- PROMOTES YOUR PET'S WELLNESS: (I) Elevated to support digestive health & make mealtime more comfortable. (II) Please READ vet recommendations below
If you are looking for the bowls that can accommodate large or senior dogs suffering from arthritis, spinal problems or digestive issues, The PetFusion Elevated Dog Bowl (link to Amazon) is the best buy.
This bowl is made with high-quality food-grade stainless steel. The base is made of heavy aluminum base with rubber feet that make it difficult for your dog to knock it over.
Most reviews on Amazon.com are quite happy with the size and height; they are perfectly sized for medium and large dogs.
5. Best Budget Pick: AmazonBasics Stainless Steel Dog Bowl
- Set of 2 stainless-steel food bowls for puppies, dogs, cats, or kittens
- Holds up to 38 ounces each; perfect for dry kibble, wet food, treats, or water
Despite its low price, we were surprised that the AmazonBasics Stainless Steel Dog Bowl (link to Amazon) feels as durable as the bowls on other brands costing several times as much.
It has a wide base to keep the bowl from tipping. And a rubber strip around the base that keeps the bowl from sliding around while your dog eats or drinks.
Although the bowl was advertised to be rust-resistant, there were a lot of mixed reviews about it, something that you might want to consider before getting this bowl.
How To Clean Stainless Steel Dog Bowls?
Cleaning a stainless steel dog bowl is relatively easy compared with other bowls type.
First, take a sponge or soft cloth and apply a small amount of washing up liquid to remove any leftover food stains. Do not use a scrubber since it can scratch the surface of the dog bowl.
Then soak the bowl in vinegar and warm water for about two minutes to sanitize the bowl. Once completed, rinse with soap and clean water and pat dry with a soft cloth.