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ravenous beast

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
Sancha is a ravenous beast, and I don't know what to make of it. I feed fixed amounts in a.m. and p.m. for both Obi and Sanch (Innova dry). They both are at a good weight, except that Sancha is a tad plump. So, although I know she is well fed, she acts as if she is starving. Before we adopted Sancha, Obi would eat slowly throughout the day, so that often there was just a bit left when I was doling out the new feeding. However, Sancha eats her food at marathon pace and then will try to horn in on Obi's, so the poor guy has had to learn to eat his all in one sitting, which I'm not happy about.

Now for the truly ravening part. I had the Innova in the bag. She ripped it open to eat out of it. I put it in a plastic bin. I found her teeth marks on it, and she'd managed to pull it over and spill the top off to get at the food. So now I have it out of her reach. But still, if I make the mistake of leaving ANY kind of food where she can reach it, she'll attempt to eat it. She ripped into the bread bag today, but apparently didn't like it because it was only chewed a bit. You'd think she was starving, but I know very well that she isn't. She's slightly plump! She had inappropriate pooing problems not too long ago, so she's had both a recent fecal, urinalysis and overall health check which came out with an all-clear (switched litter; all good).

BTW, when we went to Alaska we had a sitter come in to check on them every other day and had them free feeding at that time. In the 10 days we were gone, I'll swear our petite little girl that the vet says should be about 6 lbs appeared to have reached 7.5 or 8 (and on a frame that small, IT SHOWED). So, free feeding is obviously not a good idea unless we want a truly fat cat. What gives? Any ideas? Do you suppose the owners who gave her up at the shelter underfed her and she's just a spaz about food now?
post #2 of 14
How old are your cats? was sancha a stray before you got her?

Buddy is 7 months old and I adopted him almost 3 months ago and used to be a stray. He is the same way, I give 6oz of wet food and 1/2 cup of dry in the day, and he is growing and gaining the steady weight so I know he is eating well. He is also a ravenous beast I ended up double bagging the dry food to reduce the smell and put child locks on the cupboard since Buddy learned how to open the cupboards and one time ripped into his bag of dry food. He also would go by my kids at dinner time to try to feed on the falling food, even right after he ate. I have to be strict right now with him since he just got over pancreatitis, and the vet said to make sure he didn't eat anything fatty.

Anyway, I think with my cat that it was because he was a stray, and they learn to eat that way for survival. When strays find food they eat as much as they possibly can since they don't know when their next meal is comming. Either that or they never ever want to feel hungry again, so they make sure they are stuffed.

My vet said that most cats will outgrow this ravenous behavior, but not all. The only thing you can do is to put the food away where she cannot get it, and feed her at mealtimes, so she is busy eating her food to try to steal anyone elses, and don't leave food unattended unless you want it eaten by her. Thats what I have done, and its working out better than before when he would try to steal a pack of pork chops from my grocery bags.

Good Luck
post #3 of 14
For grins and giggles, consider trying one of those treat dispensing balls, put just a teense of her dry food into it, and know that she'll get some exercise between meals as she bats it around to get those pieces dispensed
post #4 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pat & Alix
For grins and giggles, consider trying one of those treat dispensing balls, put just a teense of her dry food into it, and know that she'll get some exercise between meals as she bats it around to get those pieces dispensed
always wondered if a cat would due that
post #5 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by sharky
always wondered if a cat would due that
They do make lighter weight (than the dog version) treat releasing ball toys!
post #6 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MRod1
How old are your cats? was sancha a stray before you got her?
Obi is about 1 1/2 and Sancha is just over 1 year. Obi was a stray 6 mo old I rescued from the train station. Sancha was given up at the shelter when she was also about 7 mo old because "the landlord found out" (that's what we were told, anyway).

The birds and such should be thankful Sancha stays inside, because she is quite the little predator. She picks all her toys up in her mouth and treats them like prey (one mouse toy, in particular, she tosses in the air and catches again, like it was a REAL dead mouse . . .). I may have to try one of those treat-dispensing balls, except that I'm afraid she'd just try and chew into it rather than get the treats in the intended manner!
post #7 of 14
My cat Bailey had the same behaviour, and gained weight when I first got her. She'd finish her bowl of food, and then shove Sam out of the way to eat his as well.

Rather than be strict with portion control, I did leave some food out all the time, so she would learn that there was always food around, and she didn't need to eat everything when it was available. That's what stray cats have to learn, eat when there is food, because there may not be more for a while.

After about 4 months, she did learn, and will now walk away from a full dish. She is still quite the little piggy, though, and will cry if the dish is completely empty. I do portion control, but just put a little out at a time, so she is confident that she won't starve again.

My vet also talked about "competitive eating" - when a second cat is introduced, both will eat more, just to be sure they are each getting their fair share.
post #8 of 14
Interesting....today for the first time I fed Tola dry food. I am trying to wean her off raw twice daily to canned in the AM and dry for the rest of the day. She is doing really well, but today I thought i would put out a teeny tiny bit of dry before i left for work (2 pm) to see what she would do, and she ate it all up within about a minute!! i kept telling her "tola no! leave some for the rest of the day!" but she ignored me and kept eating excitedly.

oh my lord!!! this cat!! how should i do this in a better way? i currently still feed her twice daily wet food (combo of raw and new canned stuff), but want to get her to canned in the am and dry for the rest of the day......How do I get her to understand that the dry is for the whole day!!

no seriously...how do I do it?
post #9 of 14
Treat balls...how do they work? Does the cat have to tease the food out of some holes...or what?
Linda
post #10 of 14
I have one like this. I remedied it by getting the cats a huge rubbermaid tub with a lock-down lid, which I use as their food pantry. The way i see it, if he ever successfully opens THAT, he deserves the food inside.


I also found that gradually switching the kittens over to a twice-daily feeding schedule (starting at 4 a day, with gradually smaller portions. and when they were done, they got nothing until the next feeding time, no matter how much they cried.) when they started hoovering up whole bags of kitten chow in less than a week taught them to eat a little more slowly. (They were getting very fat, and i was going broke.) Nothing teaches conservation of anything better than knowing how it feels to do without it. Now I can leave a full days' food out for them and they will only eat what they need. It sounds cruel, but it works in the same vein as childcare.
post #11 of 14
I have a Similar problem with my cats... Sibohan dosn't care less about when or if she gets fed, but Duke is like an alarm clock. One time we decided to keep the dry cat food (new bag) in the closet until we needed it. Unknown to us Duke is a "Houdini" and got the door open, he actually ate a hole in the new bag large enough to fit his entire head in. It was a few days befor we noticed. We now keep the cat food in a rubermaid container on the top shelf of the linen closet and have a latch on it.
Duke also goes after Sibohan's food so she is fed in a seperate room high enough up that duke can't jump up and eat it (Duke is quite large and can't jump as high). When staying at my parents house over the Christmas Holiday I have to take special care with duke because he has been known to eat the majority of my parents dog's food. He's a little monster but the most cuddly thing you can imagine.
I say give a fixed amount and lock up the rest, she may be upset for a while but will get over it... Oh and lock up your garbage, when they can't find the cat food they tend to go for anything that smells interesting.
post #12 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sibohan2005
Unknown to us Duke is a "Houdini" and got the door open, he actually ate a hole in the new bag large enough to fit his entire head in. It was a few days befor we noticed.


that was a good one! made me spit out my coffee and have my laugh for the day!
post #13 of 14


Some cats are just born to be ravenous beasts, I think. I can sympathize!

I got Mr. Underfoot as a kitten 11 years ago, born to a stray under our porch. He's always had an insatiable appetite, such that any food left unattended even for a moment is fair game for him. All food must be kept sealed in containers because he can easily get into cupboards and open doors. We keep the dry cat food in an old plastic litter container that can be sealed tightly. We keep the garbage can out in the garage, as well as the dog food containers (he figured out how to get them open and tanked up on dog food once). Even groceries must be put away immediately - I set a bag of bread down for a few minutes once and came back to the kitchen to find he'd eaten a bit out of the top of each piece in the loaf. I can always tell when one of us has forgotten to put a bag of chips back up in the high cupboard, because a few minutes later I'll hear that tell-tale crinkle, crinkle...rrrip...crunch crunch crunch sound of Mr. getting into them. I can't tell you how many times I've walked into the living room to find him running around with a bag of chips stuck over his head.

Good thing he's so cute and affectionate!

I don't know if this is much help, but I've managed moderate his weight by free-feeding a small amount of dry food during the day, and feeding a meal of canned food at night. He's still a bit chubby, but not as fat as he used to be...I think the canned food helps him feel more satisfied, though he'll still turn the house inside-out if I don't leave a bit of dry food out for him all the time.
post #14 of 14
I like the treat ball idea...that might be worth a try for us, too.
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