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Need feeding advise from multi cat households

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 
For those of you who have multiple cat households....How do keep the kittens fed the calories they need with the older cats not gaining weight?

Lilly has been gaining weight ever since I adopted Forrest. I'm beginning to think she is a "stress" eater. Now Forrest is starting to lose weight (at 10 months) and she is still mostly gaining wight and I'm becoming concerned.

When we first adopted Forrest last Summer he was always jumping on her wanting to play. The only time he would leave her alone was when she was eating or using her box. So, whenever he would want to play (he's a kitten so that's all the time) she would go to her food bowl and start eating. Her eating patterns have changed for the worse since he arrived. Before Forrest arrived Lilly was always free fed and was an appropriate weight.

Lilly went from 10 lbs up to 12 lbs and has been up and down and now is at 11 1/2 . The vet says she needs to be between 10 and 10.5 lbs. Forrest is 9.5 lbs at 10 months - he doesn't look bony (he has an Oriental body type) but I think he might need to be gaining more weight than he is. I weigh them once a week with a baby scale. This week (for the 2nd week in a row) Forrest has lost weight. It's not much at an oz. each week - but still it's going down - and Lilly's is going up.

I've tried cutting back on Lilly's kibbles and canned food (the amout per my Vet) and a few months ago we started mixing in Wellness weight management dry along with her regular Wellness Chicken and rice but it hasn't helped. I don't want to give her total Weight Management because Forrest always manages to get into her bowl during the day and eat her dry food. He's starting to lose weight and at 10 months of age I know this can't be good. He really should still be on kitten food, but I can only manage to give him that at night when I put him in the back wing of the house for a while to eat so Lilly won't get at his kitten food.

Any advice would be appreciated.
post #2 of 20
ONE LIGHT or WT control food s OFTEN will CAUSE wt gain since 90% of them lower the protein 10-30 % and the fat 15-30% ... which means most reg premiums have carb levels 25-30 % in dry food yet wt controls have up to 60% carbs...

Have you thought about giving both Adult ??? at 10 months Forest can eat adult ( yes I like kittens eating kitten till12 -18 months but).. adult may have Forest gaining and Lilly losing

Can you give both a couple meals of wet food???
post #3 of 20
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sharky View Post
ONE LIGHT or WT control food s OFTEN will CAUSE wt gain since 90% of them lower the protein 10-30 % and the fat 15-30% ... which means most reg premiums have carb levels 25-30 % in dry food yet wt controls have up to 60% carbs...

Have you thought about giving both Adult ??? at 10 months Forest can eat adult ( yes I like kittens eating kitten till12 -18 months but).. adult may have Forest gaining and Lilly losing

Can you give both a couple meals of wet food???
I've been mixing Wellness weight control and chicken and rice because I don't want total weight since Forrest is still a kitten. They do get a small can of Wellness canned during the day and then Forrest gets extra at night when he is separated. My problem is that Lilly must be eating way more than she should. I need Forrest to eat the calories....Lilly to cut back. Maybe I should go back to the Adult Chicken and Rice. They used to eat Evo, but Lilly complained that she was not getting enough food. (But she was gaining on what I was giving her). I think she just likes to eat - regardless of the calories, so I switched to the Chicken and rice because it was a little lower in calories.

It was much easier with just one cat.
post #4 of 20
can you devise a way for Forest to eat in a separate area ... ie box that Lilly is to big to get in??

Could you feed Lilly on a plate ??
post #5 of 20
Well, since Lilly's not significantly overweight, I'd consider feeding them both adult cat food. I'd consider giving Forrest extra treats (alone in the bedroom or bathroom or something) a couple times a day - maybe the high protein kitten food, or baby food. And I'd give each of them some "alone time" play - but I'd give Lilly at least two good "work-outs" a day of at least 15 minutes, and even better 1/2 an hour each. Use exercise to burn up the calories she needs to lose!

Laurie
post #6 of 20
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sharky View Post
can you devise a way for Forest to eat in a separate area ... ie box that Lilly is to big to get in??

Could you feed Lilly on a plate ??
We have thought about making a box for Forrest to eat in. We had his food on the kitchen counter for a few days before Lilly found it.

It would take some trial and error to see just how small of a slot she would try to squeeze herself through for food.

Also...another question. Lilly has been getting MUCH more exercise in playing and chasing with Forrest. I know in Humans that muscle weighs more than fat. It is possible that she is also gaining muscle weight? She's 4 years old and her only exercise before Forrest arrived was scratching on her posts. She's just not a very active girl...but Forrest makes her run and jump ( a lot) now. She doesn't look like a butterball.
post #7 of 20
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LDG View Post
Well, since Lilly's not significantly overweight, I'd consider feeding them both adult cat food. I'd consider giving Forrest extra treats (alone in the bedroom or bathroom or something) a couple times a day - maybe the high protein kitten food, or baby food. And I'd give each of them some "alone time" play - but I'd give Lilly at least two good "work-outs" a day of at least 15 minutes, and even better 1/2 an hour each. Use exercise to burn up the calories she needs to lose!

Laurie
I do feed Forrest an extra meal before bedtime when I can separate the two for a while. I could also start to give him some kitten kibbles as "treats". He'd love that.

With Forrest's extra Oriental energy he has been exercising Lilly. She also gets Da'Bird and chase the mouse toys time too. Her problem is that she eats her food and then part of Forrest's.
post #8 of 20
This is exactly the problem that I've been having with Gus and Ramsay. Gus is 4 months and 4-5lbs, and Ramsay is 2 years and should be 11lbs but has gained some since Gus arrived in January.
post #9 of 20
When I got a kitten and had an adult cat, I switched both to All Life Stage food.
My older cat didn't gain weight on it, and younger grew on it so it was perfect.
I fed Felidae in the beginning.
I didn't start noticing weight issues until I tried EVO, not to mention the older kitty was screaming in hunger on it all the time and gained tons of weight that we just recently completely got rid of.
There are a few All Life Stages foods around. Felidae is one, Natural Balance Ultra is another.
post #10 of 20
My kittens were fed in the cage so the adults could not get their food. Once they were on adult foods (at 4-5 months old) everyone was fine. You could have a "kitten" room where you put the younger ones in to eat their food and the older ones can't bother them.
post #11 of 20
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by kittylover77 View Post
When I got a kitten and had an adult cat, I switched both to All Life Stage food.
My older cat didn't gain weight on it, and younger grew on it so it was perfect.
I fed Felidae in the beginning.
I didn't start noticing weight issues until I tried EVO, not to mention the older kitty was screaming in hunger on it all the time and gained tons of weight that we just recently completely got rid of.
There are a few All Life Stages foods around. Felidae is one, Natural Balance Ultra is another.
When I started EVO was when Lilly's weight ballooned. She could only have such a small amount of it per day and she was, like your kitty, acting like I was starving her to death.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldenKitty45 View Post
You could have a "kitten" room where you put the younger ones in to eat their food and the older ones can't bother them.
At bedtime I do give Forrest extra food away from Lilly cause she'll try and sneak his food whenever possible.

Forrest also eats Lilly's food throughout the day so I'm not really sure how much she's getting. I put the amount the vet recommended for weight loss and don't put out more for her. However, since the little guy is in her bowl and she is in his - I just can't always tell how much each is eating.
post #12 of 20
That's why you can't leave food out and free feed - put a set amount out and watch them. When they are done, no more food till next meal. Give the kitten an extra meal but don't allow them to eat out of each other's bowls.

Are you feeding dry only or some canned - canned is easier to measure and know what they are eating.
post #13 of 20
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldenKitty45 View Post
That's why you can't leave food out and free feed - put a set amount out and watch them. When they are done, no more food till next meal. Give the kitten an extra meal but don't allow them to eat out of each other's bowls.

Are you feeding dry only or some canned - canned is easier to measure and know what they are eating.
I'm feeding both dry and canned. How many times a day do you feed your kitties...and do you also give both dry and canned?
post #14 of 20
They get fed twice a day - dry in the morning (about 1/2 cup) and canned for supper - about 1/3 can each (6 oz can) Charlie is a solid 11 lbs; Ling is somewhere between 9-10 lbs.
post #15 of 20
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldenKitty45 View Post
They get fed twice a day - dry in the morning (about 1/2 cup) and canned for supper - about 1/3 can each (6 oz can) Charlie is a solid 11 lbs; Ling is somewhere between 9-10 lbs.
Ok...I think I'm going to try feeding like this. Lilly's just going to hate it for a while. She's been free fed all her 4 years. Forrest being young I'm sure will adapt quickly.

Do you just pick up the bowls after a certain amount of time? If so...how long do you give them to eat?
post #16 of 20
They usually take a few hrs to eat the dry. The canned is gone within 10 mins. They really don't eat out of each other's bowls. Both are on a counter with their water.

I'd measure out a certain amount of dry - let them nibble on that. When its gone its gone and no more food out till dinnertime.

When we get Jack next year, he'll be fed in a separate room while on kitten food; then have to figure out the new eating arrangements - hopefully all 3 of the cats will be ok with eating on the counter - will have to wait and see.

BTW the counter is in the basement - not where we eat
post #17 of 20
Thread Starter 
Ok, well here goes. We'll start the new feeding schedule at dinnertime.

Hopefully Lilly will not become too stressed out by it. She really gets upset when her "routine" is disturbed.
post #18 of 20
I have the same situation as you, only with more complications.

I have 1 fat cat (14.5lbs now) and two, 9 month old kittens. The fat cat, Toby, is crazy about food and will do ANYTHING to get extra food. I tried free feeding them at one point because I was concerned about the kittens not getting enough calories (I was feeding EVO). Toby ballooned to 15lbs. So, back to meals, then Toby started showing signs of allergies, so now he's on a different food Than the kittens.

With reduced portions at mealtimes, Toby is now losing some weight, but I'm still not sure if my kittens are gaining enough.

What I've been doing, is feeding two meals of dry per day. I seperate the kittens out into a room and feed them, then I feed Toby his food. I let the kittens out when they're finished. They also get a meal of wet food about every-other-day...which I also have to seperate them for because of Toby's food allergies.

Seperating them is a pain, but necessary at this point, and I know how much, and what, everyone is eating.

Mine eat their dry food in about 30 - 45 minutes (the kittens). Toby wolfs his down within 5 minutes if not less.

Art
post #19 of 20
IMO I'd give them a canned meal every day instead of every other day.
post #20 of 20
I have 2 cats, one lazy adult and one energetic kitten. It would be impossible for me to free-feed them.

I feed them dry in the morning. I put Matilda in her own bedroom and give her dry food and Chloe gets her kitten dry food in the other room. (Both have access to a litter box and water). Chloe is 7 1/2 months old and I will keep her on kitten food until she's 1, she's 6 lbs. Matilda is at least 9 lbs, but I don't think she's at 10. I don't want to do any weight loss program without the vet and I think she could just be a naturally large cat, so in the meantime to keep her weight in check I just try to feed her more wet food than normal. Matilda is eating grain-free right now too, another reason why I have to seperate them when they eat. Usually their food is gone within 30 minutes, but it's almost always gone within an hour. After I'm done getting ready, I take their food bowls away and they don't have to be separated anymore.

At night, they both get wet food in separate rooms. I keep them separated until most of the food is gone.

I still sometimes give Chloe a 3rd meal during the day if she doesn't eat much during the other 2.
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