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Scheduling Feeding Times

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 

Hi! We recently adopted a now 6-month old male DSH tabby named Mylo. We already had another (female) DSH tabby named Sephie. The older one is going to be 3 years old in June and we have never had issues with her weight. Actually, she weighs around 8 lbs, which makes her a pretty petite cat. We have had her since she was a very young kitten.

 

Mylo, on the other hand, eats every time he has a chance. Every time after we pet him, he wakes up from a nap, he plays with his toys, or we get home, he goes straight to his food bowl and eats. He is not overweight, but he is starting to look rounder on the edges sweat.gif (haha). Both of them have food readily available all day.

 

My question was whether we should start scheduling their feeding times and if so, how? I know kittens tend to eat more than adult cats, but we are starting to worry about Mylo's health. Because of the discrepancy in ages, we are not sure as to how to go about this. Anything would be of great help! Thanks :)

 

Ana comp_surfin.gif

post #2 of 28

Is there anywhere the kitten can get to where the older cats can't get?  I had to feed S&S on top of the VCR for a while, or the others would have eaten all of the Kitten Chow.

post #3 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by catspaw66 View Post

Is there anywhere the kitten can get to where the older cats can't get?  I had to feed S&S on top of the VCR for a while, or the others would have eaten all of the Kitten Chow.

 

It is actually the older cat that can get everywhere. Mylo doesn't seem strong enough (or hasn't figured out how) to get to the higher places.

 

Would it be wise to start scheduling the feeding times for both cats at the same time? As in feeding them same amount? Or should we wait until he hits adulthood? In other words, is he eating more because he is a kitten or because he just likes to eat? hehe sweat.gif

post #4 of 28

I'm assuming the kitten chow is dry food? Scheduled feedings are always a good idea imo. It's easier to regulate and know exactly how much your cat is eating. Free feeding dry can lead to a cat becoming a kibble addict and can also lead to obesity. Kittens do need more food then adults, but you can easily add a meal or 2 for him, inbetween the regular meal times.
 

post #5 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Katluver4life View Post

I'm assuming the kitten chow is dry food? Scheduled feedings are always a good idea imo. It's easier to regulate and know exactly how much your cat is eating. Free feeding dry can lead to a cat becoming a kibble addict and can also lead to obesity. Kittens do need more food then adults, but you can easily add a meal or 2 for him, inbetween the regular meal times.

 

Yes, the chow is dry. I just wasn't sure if scheduling for a kitten was healthy until they hit adulthood. We'll start on this ASAP. Thanks!
post #6 of 28

Since he is now at least 6 months old scheduling is fine. I schedule even younger kittens, just feed more often. Have you thought about introducing wet food?
 

post #7 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Katluver4life View Post

Since he is now at least 6 months old scheduling is fine. I schedule even younger kittens, just feed more often. Have you thought about introducing wet food?

 

I have given wet food only to the older cat, just try it out. Since we have never had problems with Sephie over or under eating with free feeding, I never thought of scheduling until now. Mylo has not had wet food and he seems to eat all day.

Is wet food healthier? I've read articles but there does not seem to be a consensus about it.

I started the scheduled feeding today in the morning. I am planning on feeding Sephie twice and Mylo three times. Hopefully they catch on to it soon enough. So far they haven't complained about there being no food out all day. We'll see if that continues at night. :/
post #8 of 28

I second introducing wet food and scheduled feeding.

For the kitten you could try a higher fat canned food.  Or add an egg yolk, piece of chicken fat or organ meat (liver, heart) to her wet food.

post #9 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ritz View Post

I second introducing wet food and scheduled feeding.
For the kitten you could try a higher fat canned food.  Or add an egg yolk, piece of chicken fat or organ meat (liver, heart) to her wet food.

So yes to wet food for kitten? Even though he is eating the dry food normally (when it's out at least)?

Sorry about the redundant questions. Just want to make sure I'm getting all this right.
post #10 of 28

Wet food for a six month old kitten is fine.  If Mylo seems very hungry, you could add an extra meal.  Wet food is better for cats.  Period.

post #11 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ritz View Post

Wet food for a six month old kitten is fine.  If Mylo seems very hungry, you could add an extra meal.  Wet food is better for cats.  Period.

 

Will definitely look into the wet food then. As of today, he seems a little confused on the fact that the bowls are gone. He ate about an hour ago (second meal) and proceeded to clean himself and take a nap. Now he is staring at the cursor on the computer screen as I type this. So I think it is safe to say he is ok. biggthumpup.gif I'll monitor his behavior in the upcoming days and adjust to it. Maybe I'll add an extra meal if needed. Thanks for the advice! biggrin.gif

post #12 of 28

Here is a good place to learn about why wet food is healthier for your kitties. Written by a vet. http://www.catinfo.org/

 

There is a lot to take in when reading that laughing02.gif so don't let your head explode. The basics is all you really need to retain. Feel free to come back here if you have further questions and of course we love pictures. Good luck, keep us posted.
 

post #13 of 28

If Sephie takes issue to meal feeding (since she is used to grazing) you can always get her a meowspace or something similar.  It is basically box that lets one cat in and keeps the other out.  The downside is that cat who is allowed in has to wear a collar.

post #14 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by le chat fou View Post

Yes, the chow is dry. I just wasn't sure if scheduling for a kitten was healthy until they hit adulthood. We'll start on this ASAP. Thanks!

Loving this thread! I had a horrendous issue here with your same dilemma. I put them all on a feeding schedule. I fed my kitten wet kitten food and monitored that none of the other cats (2 adults, 1 senior) got to it. I fed her plenty and she got plenty to eat. At that time I stopped free feeding kibble and started measuring out the feedings in between the wet feedings. This worked out well for that situation.

If you can separate them while feeding them this will hopefully work out well for you. I would certainly try to introduce them to wet food and reduce the kibble... if at all possible. If not, the scheduled feedings is your friend in this situation in my opinion wink.gif2cents.gif
post #15 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Imbri View Post

If Sephie takes issue to meal feeding (since she is used to grazing) you can always get her a meowspace or something similar.  It is basically box that lets one cat in and keeps the other out.  The downside is that cat who is allowed in has to wear a collar.

Oh yeah she did have and issue yesterday when I started this. She didn't eat all day! But I've read that this is normal since she is not used to it. My husband is now in charge of the morning feeding for both and he informed me that both of them ate today when he fed them.

Mylo is having no issues with this, but he still seems a little confused when he steps into the kitchen and there is no food. We store the the cat food in the pantry, so whenever we open it he goes up to it, rubs himself on it, and begins to purr. He's always done this even before scheduling hehe.

This box thing seems interesting though. Since Sephie was used to being alone for the past 3 years, she hasn't quite gotten used to the fact that Mylo is staying. (We got him not to long ago.) We isolated them and all that good stuff you do when you bring in a new kitty. She now ignores him pretty well, but given the fact that Mylo is REALLY playful and Sephie is well.. umm.. grumpy to say the least, this box seems like a good investment. Unless I'm understanding its function all wrong, is it like a safe spot for just the one cat wearing the collar?

Ever since we moved into the apartment, she hasn't found a definitive safe spot. Although whenever she runs and hides we do not touch or attempt to move her from her spot. She used to live in my husband's parents when we were not married yet, so she had a plethora of hiding and safe spots all over the place.

So pretty much keep her grazing with her food in this box? Or am I totally off on a tangent here? Haha
post #16 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Katluver4life View Post

Here is a good place to learn about why wet food is healthier for your kitties. Written by a vet. http://www.catinfo.org/

There is a lot to take in when reading that laughing02.gif so don't let your head explode. The basics is all you really need to retain. Feel free to come back here if you have further questions and of course we love pictures. Good luck, keep us posted.

 

Haha you were not kidding about the reading. This is really good though. Thanks!

Based on our experience with wet food, I know for sure Sephie will eat just about any kind of it with no problems. For Mylo though, should I ease into it? Mix it with his current kibble? Go straight into it?
post #17 of 28
Thread Starter 

Ok I just watched a video on the Meowspace box. I like it! Seems like a good investment especially for litter boxes and food. biggrin.gif Thanks again!

post #18 of 28

First see if Mylo will just go for the wet, if so, then no need to ease into it at all. If he has trouble accepting it then maybe crush some of his dry over the top. That can usually attract him to eat. But there is no need with wet to do a slow transition like you would do when switching dry brands.
 

post #19 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by le chat fou View Post

This box thing seems interesting though. Since Sephie was used to being alone for the past 3 years, she hasn't quite gotten used to the fact that Mylo is staying. (We got him not to long ago.) We isolated them and all that good stuff you do when you bring in a new kitty. She now ignores him pretty well, but given the fact that Mylo is REALLY playful and Sephie is well.. umm.. grumpy to say the least, this box seems like a good investment. Unless I'm understanding its function all wrong, is it like a safe spot for just the one cat wearing the collar?

Ever since we moved into the apartment, she hasn't found a definitive safe spot. Although whenever she runs and hides we do not touch or attempt to move her from her spot. She used to live in my husband's parents when we were not married yet, so she had a plethora of hiding and safe spots all over the place.

So pretty much keep her grazing with her food in this box? Or am I totally off on a tangent here? Haha

The Meowspace is a pretty decent size, they make them big enough to place a litter pan in!  You can always put a nice squishy bed in there as well as a small bowl of snacks and it can be her little fortress of solitude.   The door is magnetic so only the cat with the magnetic collar can open it.  It is like magic!

If she totally balks at the idea of being a meal fed cat then yes, you can keep her grazing with the Meowspace.  If she takes to meal feeding then the only reason for it would be to offer her a safe space away from Mylo.

 

I know my Callista would have loved something like that when I brought Jasio home, she still hasn't forgiven him for existing.

post #20 of 28
Thread Starter 
I think we'll give it a few weeks with the scheduling for Sephie and transition Mylo into wet food (and Sephie, too while we are it). I like the idea of the "fortress of solitude" even if the scheduling works for her.

I was reading their website and they even sell some that you can program with your pet's microchip ID! So that would mean no collar at all. But they are a tad more expensive (of course).

I think she has forgiven him but would much rather have him ignore her completely haha. I wish I could explain to her that he's just a little boy that wants to play.. But wouldn't that just make everything too simple? ;P
post #21 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by le chat fou View Post


I think she has forgiven him but would much rather have him ignore her completely haha. I wish I could explain to her that he's just a little boy that wants to play.. But wouldn't that just make everything too simple? ;P

That is how I ended up with 4 cats instead of 1.

 

If he is just a bundle of irritating energy and you can't keep him from pestering her you could always consider cat#3 ;)  Or fostering! For 4 years I had quite the parade of fostered kittens through my house until one finally failed because she bonded so closely with big male, Jasio.  The kittens kept him so entertained he hardly had time to bug my old fart cats.  These days Jasio, The Niblet and our newest addition, Hector, keep each other so entertained my remaining old fart gets to sit on top of her cat tree and hold court over them.  They leave her totally alone and she pretends they don't exist except to look down on them. 

post #22 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Imbri View Post

That is how I ended up with 4 cats instead of 1.

 

If he is just a bundle of irritating energy and you can't keep him from pestering her you could always consider cat#3 ;)  Or fostering! For 4 years I had quite the parade of fostered kittens through my house until one finally failed because she bonded so closely with big male, Jasio.  The kittens kept him so entertained he hardly had time to bug my old fart cats.  These days Jasio, The Niblet and our newest addition, Hector, keep each other so entertained my remaining old fart gets to sit on top of her cat tree and hold court over them.  They leave her totally alone and she pretends they don't exist except to look down on them. 

 Well its just in random bursts and they usually happen when we get home. I guess its just part of his routine since (we assume) they slumber when we are gone and he likes to play when we are around. As I'm typing this, Mylo is watching cars driving by while laying on the window sill and Sephie is cleaning herself at the top of the tower. I've been observing their interactions lately and now he runs away more often when she starts to growl or complain at him. Hopefully, he'll get the hang of it soon... cross.gif

 

About fostering.. how does that work? I've been reading other posts mentioning fostering, but I wasn't sure exactly what that refers to. How do you go about doing that? And a failed fostering? So many questions! paranoid.gif

post #23 of 28

Fostering is done through a local rescue group where you agree to house and care for a cat until it can be adopted. A failed foster is one that you end up keeping. Thats the quick answer.  I'm in a bit of a hurry atm to head to work. Others can explain in more depth. biggrin.gif
 

post #24 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Katluver4life View Post

Fostering is done through a local rescue group where you agree to house and care for a cat until it can be adopted. A failed foster is one that you end up keeping. Thats the quick answer.  I'm in a bit of a hurry atm to head to work. Others can explain in more depth. biggrin.gif
 

 

Hmm.. so you house train the kitties? Or do you just take care of it for a certain amount of time? I think this is something we might try out once we move into a house. smile2.gif There are a handful of rescue groups around here, but I have never heard of the fostering or met anyone that fosters around here. I'll inquire at the rescue where we got Mylo from. happy2.gif

post #25 of 28

My Sugar and Spice were fostered by my brother for a couple of months. In that time, they had to be taken to the vet - chronic diarrhea - and go through several courses of antibiotics and antiparisiticals. The person fostering pays for all vet bills, even neutering if needed, all the food and toys, and in this case the pre-adoption examination, immunizations, and microchipping.  S&S are the delight of my life, they wrestle like kittens several times a day, and love to snuggle and sleep with me at night.

 

Fostering can be very satisfying and can save the life of cats and kittens who are sick enough they can't be put in the general population of a shelter.  It is also good for older cats, like my Sheba.

post #26 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by le chat fou View Post

 

Hmm.. so you house train the kitties? Or do you just take care of it for a certain amount of time? I think this is something we might try out once we move into a house. smile2.gif There are a handful of rescue groups around here, but I have never heard of the fostering or met anyone that fosters around here. I'll inquire at the rescue where we got Mylo from. happy2.gif


The needs of each cat being fostered may differ. Some may be ill and need their health needs taken care of prior to being able to be put up for adoption, and since most rescue groups do not have facilities to house cats, fostering is the only way these cats survive. Some may be pregnant and need a home that can help with the birth and then getting both momma and kittens adopted. Some rescue groups pay for all the related costs for spaying/neutering, vaccinations, medications and some will even do microchipping. These are the things you'll need to ask about when you research rescues to foster for. Depends on what you feel you'll be able to handle on your own. Of course all the food, litter, toys, ect are an expense you will have. Also ask to what extent they help with getting the cats adopted. With some, it's all on you, with others they have places you'll be able to bring the cat for adoption events and such. The length of time a cat remains with you is an unknown factor and can be with you for years. Something to consider smile.gif

Thank you for considering this as something you may like to do. It can be very rewarding and is a badly needed service. Good luck and good vibes.gif

post #27 of 28
Thread Starter 

I forgot to update about the change to wet food and scheduling! The scheduling is going pretty good. They definitely got the hang of it within the first week and every time we start getting ready for dinner they sit by the pantry waiting for their food. (cuteness!)

 

As for the wet food, Sephie gorges on the can! She will eat most of it in one sitting, but she's learning that if she leaves some extra, she will get it later. It is pretty funny watching (and hearing) her eat. It's as if she has never been fed before! She is really enjoying the change to wet food. If you walk too close to her, or if Mylo starts sniffing her can, she will go into what we call "Turkey Mode." She literally sounds like a gobbling turkey! It's kinda funny, but we are watching our distance when she eats just in case she gets too defensive of her food. cringe.gif

 

Mylo at first was sniffing the can for a good minute or two before he realized he could eat it! He then proceeded to lick the top of the food and finally ate the food. He doesn't go "Turkey Mode" on us and usually starts his routine cleaning as soon as his full (which is about 3/4 of a can). 

 

I'm still leaving some kibble out for them (since we still have some left over) just in case I can't make it back home at lunch time, but they mostly ignore it now as they await their cans. hehe

 

Thanks again for all the tips!

post #28 of 28

Oh thats great news!! woohoo.gif Thanks for the update!  It's always a great feeling when we have a success with our furbabies, whatever it may be, huh. happy2.gif
 

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