Feeding Fatty, Part 2

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In a previous post, I wrote about ways to feed cats in a multi-cat household. Inevitably, it seems one cat always eats more than his/her fair share. We’ve been struggling with this issue for as long as we’ve had more than one cat.

Feeding Station
Liv (Left), Wayne (Middle) and Lucian (Right)

Our latest attempt at feeding seems to be working so far. It’s a bit unconventional and requires some handy-man/crafter skills. The basic premise is to create narrow feeding corrals so that the cats are guided into areas where they will ignore the other cats and just eat their own food. This is the prototype using soymilk cartons from Costco lined with contact paper and taped together.

Liv took to it immediately. We had already been feeding her in something similar, so it was familiar. Wayne hates it! He will eat, but only if he’s really hungry. He tends to leave as soon as he’s satiated instead of hoovering up whatever the other’s have left behind. Lucian eats well and is less apt to go smack Liv to get her out-of-the-way so he can finish hers. Read the rest of this entry »


Feeding Fatty

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Wayne waiting for food

If you live in a multi-cat household, you likely have one or more cats who are gluttons when it comes to meal time. We had this problem when we only had two. Kiggy would eat her dinner and then saunter over, push Michi out of the way and finish hers too. At that time, we had a fairly simple solution. We put Michi’s food up on a shelf. Kiggy had trouble jumping up on anything higher than the couch or bed.

When we adopted Liv and Lucian, they could easily jump up and finish Michi’s food for her. We started feeding Michi on the enclosed patio until a raccoon decided to join in. Poor Michi, she was always low kitty on the totem pole.

Now that we have Liv, Lucian and Wayne, it’s now Liv who is the one who gets pushed aside. Lucian usually eats some of his, pushes Wayne out of the way, who then makes a beeline to Liv and finishes her dinner. Unless we stand vigilant or feed her in a separate room, the boys get more than their fair share.

Wayne is a big cat, but he’s also rapidly becoming a fat cat. Feline obesity is a serious problem worldwide. The current consensus is that a dry food diet coupled with a sedentary lifestyle is causing our cats to become chubby. We’ve started feeding them more canned food and switched the dry to a low carb version. The theory is that a cat’s natural diet consists of hunting live food that consists mainly of protein and little carbohydrates. It’s been nicknamed the Catkins diet. It makes sense and seems to be helping.

Cat Feeder with too much food!
Cat Feeder with too much food!

We also realized that they beg for food all through the day when we’re home. We work long hours on most days and they go for a long stretch with no food. We purchased an automatic feeder that has six compartments that rotates at programmed times. Now, while we are gone they get a little dry food at regular intervals. Wayne has lost a little weight and he no longer waits by the door howling to be fed the moment we enter.

Here’s the formula that seems to be working:

  • Canned food (has more protein and water)
  • Low-carbohydrate dry food
  • Feed small portions at more frequent intervals