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Why does my cat need a dining companion?

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
Not always, but frequently he uses his silent communication skills to lure me into the laundry room (where his food bowl is) and starts to eat his food. He looks up at me occasionally to make sure I'm still there. I'll sneak away, and two seconds later he's followed me out, only to sit and look at me with reproach. My other two cats don't do this. Is this lonely diner trying to tell me something?

TIA
Mel
post #2 of 6
I don't know but perhaps you do not interact with him enough during the day so he knows when you bring him food, he has your attention. I would start playing with him one-on-one for 10 minutes at a time every day. Put a toy on a string and pull it around the house, get on the floor with cat toy and give him your attention and only your attention to see if that helps.
post #3 of 6
My kitten kind of do something similiar. He would cry and cry to me. If I put him next to the bowl, he will start eating. Don't know why he couldn't go eat if he is hungry and have to wait for me to put him next to the bowl.
post #4 of 6
Sounds like an attention issue.

Times like these, when I am involved with school work and all I see is my computer day in and day out, I don't get to spend time with anything but. Niko deals with it well. She just waits and watches patiently. But Mischief? Nuh-uh. Mischief gets neglected kitty syndrome and will set up camp in front of my door. When I open kitty will swoop in and run to the top of my dresser. If I move to remove her then she's under the bed and will stay there. She will stay in my room until she feels satisfied that I remember that she is still alive and breathing and gets some good old kitty attention.
post #5 of 6
Was there ever any territorial issues with your attention seeking cat with the other two cats? Has he ever been spooked in the laundry during a meal time, (eg. washing machine suddenly erupting to life for a spin cycle after soaking) or even ambushed by either of your cats?

If there has been, maybe he feels uncomfortable eating near a location where the other two cats eat as well. And with you there, he could see it as a tactic to stave off any possible confrontations and do something about the washing machine if need be.

You may need to change his eating location to where he feels safer. Somewhere quiet and out of the way.

Did you pet him while he was a kitten while he was eating?

This can result in cats expecting you to be there for the whole of the meal. I had people look after Russell when I had to go away and they found that he would only eat with them present in the kitchen and asked whether I watched him while he ate. I told them that I did and even petted him. So in the end they placed his food down and ignored him. And Russell got the idea that it was quite okay to eat his meal without anyone being there.

You could also move his meal location to somewhere near you and feed him whne you eat, (like dinner or breakfast), and slowly move his meal location back to the laundry over a period of weeks. And while you do this, play with him interactively. Like encourage him to stalk and pounce on a favourite toy.

Is his meal location near his litter box?

He won't want to eat if this is the case as it's against his nature to do so. And it would be best to move his meal location to another room other than the laundry.
post #6 of 6
My cat is also like that... She eats more when I am around, watching her eating.. otherwise, she would have just some nibbles, and go away.

Sometime, it seems that she thinks that her food is fresher when I am around.... She would call me, I would follow her to where her bowl is (my bedroom), she would look at me (eventhough there is food in her bowl).. .. and would start eating only if I talk her into, or drop some new food (dry food) in her bowl... She also eats less when I am not at home.... I don't think she has ever had any trauma eating alone.....
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