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Leo is stealing Pawz's food

June 14th, 2006, 11:05 AM
This has been an ongoing issue...

First of all I had them both eating out of one dish (or rather plate in this case) and I thought all was good. Then I noticed that Leo kept getting bigger but Pawz stayed the same, not cool. So I watched feeding times and Leo would stick his head under where Pawz was eating, very not cool. So to remedy this I put out seperate food dish for Pawz and another for Leo (I kept Leo's in the same spot).

Separating food dishes worked...for three days...and then Leo would eat his OWN food then move on to Pawz's. So I tried giving Leo a bit more food at mealtimes and he'd still go to Pawz's dish. I also noticed that Pawz munches throughout a period of time, he doesn't gobble his food like Leo does. So to remedy this I tried the spray worked, Leo wouldn't touch the dish if we held out the spray bottle but he would still come over to Phase 3 started.

Phase 3: stop with the spray and stick Pawz's dish in the bathroom. Cool except in order for Pawz to get his food he is *supposed* meow at the door...but he doesn' periodically I stick him in there and let him out a few minutes later...this worked...sort of...until I got a bit lazy and didn't quite close the door....which meant that Leo could get in for the food that ISN"T supposed to be once again I'm back to supervising Leo and Pawz's feedings...exept Pawz has figured out how to open the door (when its ajar) on his own so he can get out. Cool!

This morning in particular however something new happened...I went into the kitchen (at 6am *sigh*) to get the buggers their food and fed them as normal: opening the can (they get the same food from the same can), sticking food down for Leo, picking Pawz up and sticking him and his food in the bathroom, leaving the door slightly ajar, heading back to the kitchen to cover the food (here is where it differs, since normally Leo will eat his food then head over to Pawz's) when I looked down for Leo he was gone and his food untouched. I immediately went over to the bathroom and there's Leo chowing down on Pawz's food. So I picked him up and put Leo in front of his food, turned away for two seconds and he was gone again. Went back to the bathroom and picked Leo up again and placed him in front of his food, sneaked into the hallway and watched as Leo slunk against the wall towards the bathroom again! By this time Pawz had finished his food and was coming out of the bathroom anyway so I stopped Leo (for consistency sake) and put him in front of his food again, and this time he finally ate it. My question is this, why is Leo doing this?

It can't be hunger because he's not eating his own food let alone starting on Pawz'....I changed them off of Friskies (I'd run out and wasn't able to get to the pet store on time) and onto Authority (Petsmart's equivalent to Nutro...since they eat so much I decided to get the bigger kitten cans or else I'd be spending a ton more on their food, when they get into their adult stage I'm switching back to Nutro) but they're both eating the same food (from the same can too) so its not like Pawz's food is more tasty....could they be exhibiting territorial stuff now? Pawz's food dish was never any where near Leo's so its not like the few days of spraying him would have an effect and we've stopped that anyway. Anyone know of any way to stop this behaviour? Oh and if I actually allow Leo, he will eat Pawz's food...


June 14th, 2006, 12:27 PM
same thing goes on in my house... well, USED to go on constantly. it's better now. Here's how I work feeding my 2 cats...

they get fed when I get home from work, Lulu (youngest) eats in the kitchen, Nala (older) in the dining room. Lulu would constantly inhale her own food, then run to Nala's and eat her's. I literally just removed her from Nala's dish each and every time. sternly. NO. After a while, she got the point. If she goes to Nala's dish, I will remove her. no if's, and's or but's about it. I stand there and watch.

now, if you feed them near each other at the same time, it's easy to remove Leo. OR you could try feeding totally seperately. Give Leo his food, take Pawz into another room and play while Leo eats. Once he's done, switch. Feed Pawz, and take Leo into another room. This obvisouly is more time consuming, especially when you're trying to feed them and get ready for work in the morning. but if you have the time, it may help.

my girls just got used to the fact that I won't let them eat the other's food. They essentially gave up. Now, my youngest will occassionally do it, only if she doesn't like the flavor of food I served. She will go see if Nala has something better. When she realizes it's the same, she leaves.

June 14th, 2006, 01:35 PM
One of my cats, Ebby, will go after the other cats' food even if he has a full bowl in front of him. I think he has something similar to ADD because I can tell him no a million times and he immediately forgets! Sometimes he just lies down inches away, hoping they will leave something behind, and then moves in to clean up the leavings. It's not aggressive, more like anxiety.
He is such a baby, I don't think he ever had anything resembling those first lovely well-fed weeks with his mum so we're playing catch-up, as is often the case with strays.

Sometimes it's just easier to feed plunderers in another room.

June 14th, 2006, 10:04 PM
I fed them in two separate rooms but I haven't yet gotten Pawz to meow when he wants food (beyond the feed me NOW meow anyway) so instead of him meowing to eat he'll eat the dry food that I keep out for free feeding...

Leo won't touch the dry unless absolutely necessary...

I talked to the vet tech (wouldn't have normally without a vet visit however they sent me a notice saying Leo was due for his third shots a week earlier than I thought so I'd gone in to clear that up) and she said it was Leo's way of showing dominance (which he demonstrated the first day by deciding Pawz was going to play and NOW). So they suggested I feed them however many times a day but only for about 20 minutes and then if they haven't eaten enough it gets put away.

I just put some food down for the two of them and Pawz seemed to want to eat out of Leo's dish (even with him right there) and not out of his own (Leo still wants food from Pawz's dish). These cats are going to be the end of my insanity!