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Need Dryfood Feeding Tips for Two Cats

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
We have two cats. Mittens, 2, is a female and weighs upwards of 18 lbs. Button, 3, is a male and weighs around ten pounds. Button had a stomach problem that's been taken care of thanks to the vet, but now he needs to put on weight. Mittens, on the other hand, is huge, even though we play with her often and they play with each other.

Right now we free-feed them dry food only, no wet food (Button can't have it). If we try feeding them with dry food at only periodic times throughout the day, they barely eat. They'll chomp for a minute or so, and then walk away. The moment they're separated they also become more focused on seeing what the other one is up to than eating their own food. Plus then they harass us for the rest of the day wanting more food. We finally got to the point of just putting down two cups in the morning, and they would get through just under that, together, over the course of 24 hours. We figured if that was the case, then free feeding them wouldn't be much different.

Does anyone have any tips on how we can manage this problem? Thanks in advance for your help!
post #2 of 7
do they have separate bowls? or do they share the same bowl?

If they have separate bowls, two different cat kibbles, one weight gain one weight loss maybe?

Did your vet have any suggestions?
post #3 of 7
Did the vet say one is overwt and the other underwt???
post #4 of 7
Thread Starter 
The vet says that she's overweight and he's underweight and needs to put some on. They currently share a bowl (it's one of those feeders, made by the same people who make the water feeders), as they have since we brought her home years ago. We're using Nutro Natural Choice Complete Care Indoor Weight Management. He's gaining weight, so I'm not too worried about him even on the weight management food.
post #5 of 7
My senior Ox gets different food than the others-he can be a bit picky.
While in the same room (a powder room) as the other dishes-its in a completely different spot-Ox knows that that is his dish (even though I have seen Grizzly there a couple of times) I would get their own and train them to have their own seperate spots while eating.
post #6 of 7
What I'd reccomend is a complete overhaul on your feeding philosophy.

Seperate bowls. Measure out how much food they're supposed to get a day (dont' just let them gauge how much they're eating). Feed two to three meals a day. Set the food down for a specific amount of time, if they only nibble at it, then pick it up and don't put it down again until the next feeding time. (They will beg for a while, you've got to be firm, and know you're doing the right thing. They will not starve in a few hours, and being a little hungry at the next mealtime will encourage them to eat more than just a few nibbles).

It's not impossible to change free-fed cats to timed meals, but it takes consistancy and determination.

Good luck!
post #7 of 7
Just a thought - if she is overweight, I'm wondering if she has trouble jumping up on to counters or tables? Because if there are places she can't get up to because of her weight it could provide a solution - you could feed the underweight cat somewhere he can jump up to but she can't, and feed her measured portions of the weight management food at set mealtimes on the floor.

I would definitely go for separate bowls and set feeding times as one of the cats is overweight, as continuing to let her get to eat his food as well and not lose weight will be bad for her health as I'm sure you already know!
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