Constantly looking for food

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Antonio65

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I didn't go back an re-read everything, so if you have already explained that this option is not possible, sorry. For the most part, you can control no food being outside of the kitchen, so block off the kitchen all the time - and, feed them elsewhere.
Done this. No unattended food around the house. I feed them elsewhere (*)

There are DIY foldable doors made from shelving that you can create to accomplish this under most circumstances, and they would be easy to open and shut as needed.
We have doors at all rooms, I could easily close them in another room while we're eating, but I would feel so bad that probably I wouldn't eat, or I would lose my appetite knowing they're on the other side of a closed door, and no doubt I would hear them crying all time.

Right now, you can't find any health reason behind this problem, so all you can do is attempt to break the habit by removing her from the area of temptation
As for a health reason, I'm wondering if having her spayed could solve the problem... I know the two things aren't related, but the spaying could make her more relaxed and her methabolism could change a bit.
She's 6 months and two weeks old.
Over here, vets tend to wait till 7 months of age before spaying, unless there are early signs of heat.
We had planned the surgery for the end of April or early May, but following the neurological issues Freya had in the last three weeks, I think the vets would like to have more data and info on her physical conditions before doinf something that invasive, and unfortunately we're on hold for the next visits and tests because the neurologist at the clinic is still positive to covid...

She can't really be any more frustrated by being temporarily re-located to another room during meals than she is by being pushed away, having someone blow in her face, or being yelled at - yes? You really would be doing a favor for her - and, you as well.
I do not like yelling at her either, I feel so bad afterwards, last night I hardly slept for what I had done...
 
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Antonio65

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I don't think it's hunger at all. They probably made a game of it and also enjoy being with you when you eat.
I second FeebysOwner FeebysOwner , never leave enticing food around, and remove her from the dining area until she learns to behave.
I don't think it's a game. The younger one literally aims to the food on the table and when she manages to grab something she runs away to eat it in a corner away from us. Only that later on she comes back for more!
 

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I think someone above stated it best. Yelling, shooing, redirecting etc likely is less appreciated by your cats than being put in a safe room. What is it about being separate from you that makes you feel bad? Sometimes you have to do something that makes you uncomfortable if it's for their overall good, ie when we give them meds they dislike.

If you use their meal to lure them into another room then it will be a positive place for them. Their toys, water and litter should also be in there. I would leave them in there for the whole meal and I wouldn't let them out until I was done, AND they aren't meowing. They will grow to accept it as life.

You also aren't suppose to limit kittens food amounts. When you feed her, let her eat as much as she wants for 20 minutes. You can also add water to wet food to slow them down and help them fill up on water.
 
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Antonio65

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This morning the little wolf managed to sneak in the room where I stock up their food. She managed to open a 12-pack box, grabbed two pouches and started chewing on them. I heard some strange noises coming from there, and caught her with the pouches in her mouth, trying to hide and run away from me, like she had a mouse among her fangs!
Her teeth had pierced the pouches, gravy was all over!
And she just had her breakfast, a whole pouch of the same food :rolleyes:
 
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Antonio65

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What is it about being separate from you that makes you feel bad? Sometimes you have to do something that makes you uncomfortable if it's for their overall good, ie when we give them meds they dislike.
I have never done that with any of the cats I had at home, it makes me feeling bad, I consider them part of the family and I love to have them around me always.

You also aren't suppose to limit kittens food amounts. When you feed her, let her eat as much as she wants for 20 minutes. You can also add water to wet food to slow them down and help them fill up on water.
Water is regularly added to their food, both to make sure they drink enough, and to make them feel fuller.
As for the length of time, I am rather sure she would eat for 20 hours, not just for 20 minutes. A good compromise I have found for the younger one is to prepare a rich dish of green salad for her, and feed it to her as soon as she has finished her wet food. This seems to keep her busy for a while, and it also seems to stuff her a lot. It's working so far. She looks more like a rabbit than a cat :lol:
 
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Antonio65

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Things aren't getting better. It's the opposite.

Freya, the younger kitty, 7 months old, has developed an aggressive behavior against food. She actively search the house to find the smallest trace or smell of food, and is able to open packages or other containers to reach what's inside. Even if it isn't food. For instance, last week she tore the brand new litter bag open in the case there was food inside. We had cat litter all over the room.
I tried to relocate her in another room when we have lunch/dinner, like FeebysOwner FeebysOwner suggested, this works fine, she doesn't meow too much, but it's a thing I don't like to do always, I feel her like a member of the family, I can't be happy if she's confined in another room while the others are together.
Moreover, there are times when I'm not having lunch or dinner, but I'm eating a snack, a biscuit, something out of a box while I'm watching the TV. Even if I'm standing, she jumps on my lap/shoulder, grabs/hits (makes it drop) what I am eating, and runs away. If we come back home with the grocery, we have to put everything away quickly, and we just can't turn our back on the stuff, or she grabs something and runs away to eat/chew it in a corner.
I should keep her closed in another room all day long, and of course I can't do this.
I can tell you, this is really exhausting.

Due to another issue that we are investigating, she hasn't been spayed yet. We'll have a follow up visit in a week, and I do hope this will give us the green light for the spaying, and hopefully the spaying will make her calmer.
Do you think that spaying her will make her change her behavior? Please, tell me it will :frown:
 

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Since you won't consider putting them in a separate room for the short time you're eating, you'll have to look at more DYI projects. If I understand it yo have decided to shut the kitchen door while cooking, which is good and will keep them from being drenched with boiling water/food, when they trip the cook or grab the pot. (I had one who would try to grab food out of briskly boiling water, it's serious and dangerous for the cat and you.)

If you had a small human child, you would put him/her in a high chair until he/she was of an age to not grab food off of other people's plates or the serving dishes. Have you considered making a high chair with a little kitty coup on the top of it instead of a seat. They could be at the table with you and not grabbing food.

you could give them bites of your food while sitting next to their new perch.
 
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Antonio65

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Since you won't consider putting them in a separate room for the short time you're eating, you'll have to look at more DYI projects. If I understand it yo have decided to shut the kitchen door while cooking, which is good and will keep them from being drenched with boiling water/food, when they trip the cook or grab the pot. (I had one who would try to grab food out of briskly boiling water, it's serious and dangerous for the cat and you.)
Actually they don't roam around us while we're cooking, thanks God, they'd rather look for ready to eat food :lol:
So, when the food is ready to be eaten on the table, they are there. The older one, Giada, isn't much of a problem anymore, it seems that growing up has made her quieter. Freya is a real pest! She puts, dunks, her paws into anything, her claws are faster than the speed of light and get hold of everything before we can realize. Putting her down the table is short lived, she quickly jumps up again at the other end and is at it again in no time.

Like I had written above, this behavior is persistent, even when I'm just having a quick bite. Say that I want to have a biscuit, I open the food closet, take what I want to eat, and close the closet. Too late, she's on my shoulder and steals it in a blink of an eye. Putting her in a different room just because I want a biscuit isn't doable, I'd rather give up the biscuit :lol:

Have you considered making a high chair with a little kitty coup on the top of it instead of a seat. They could be at the table with you and not grabbing food.

you could give them bites of your food while sitting next to their new perch.
Not sure if I have understood it right, but couldn't they/she squirm out of whatever is containing them/her and jump on the table again? After all they are cats ;)
 

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Do you think that spaying her will make her change her behavior?
With any luck it will. Maturing might help as well, as it seems to have done for Giada.
Not sure if I have understood it right, but couldn't they/she squirm out of whatever is containing them/her and jump on the table again?
I think you would have to look at something like a crate, carrier, or maybe a small playpen - something that Freya couldn't squirm out of.

Btw, when I suggested keeping the cats out of the kitchen while eating, I didn't mean just Freya - I meant all your cats so that they have each other as company.

That is the other thing - Freya jumping up on you when you grab a snack to eat. That calls for a time out - as in, immediately put her in another room until you are done. The hardest part about creating a training session to stop a cat from unwanted behavior is the discipline the care taker must have to accomplish the task at hand. It might take a million times of putting her in the room because she is begging before she even remotely catches on, but if you don't do it each and every time, the inconsistency puts you right back at "Square One". You've heard it on this site before - one has to pick a correction tactic and stick with that same tactic and then perform it EACH AND EVERY TIME the cat does what you want them to stop.
 
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Antonio65

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With any luck it will. Maturing might help as well, as it seems to have done for Giada.
This is what I hope. That's crazy, I've never seen anything like that before!

Btw, when I suggested keeping the cats out of the kitchen while eating, I didn't mean just Freya - I meant all your cats so that they have each other as company.
That would be great so they can keep company (or fight :lol: ), but it would be unfair because Giada is so quiet lately, and sometimes she sleeps while we're eating.

That is the other thing - Freya jumping up on you when you grab a snack to eat. That calls for a time out - as in, immediately put her in another room until you are done. The hardest part about creating a training session to stop a cat from unwanted behavior is the discipline the care taker must have to accomplish the task at hand. It might take a million times of putting her in the room because she is begging before she even remotely catches on, but if you don't do it each and every time, the inconsistency puts you right back at "Square One". You've heard it on this site before - one has to pick a correction tactic and stick with that same tactic and then perform it EACH AND EVERY TIME the cat does what you want them to stop.
Yes, I do know this tactic, and I had thought of it, but I'm sure I wouldn't be consistent. Not because I wouldn't like to do that, but because I'm sure that sometimes I could forget it and not do it, and this would have the plan fail. Then I should tell my wife to do just the same, and we're two that might be inconsistent :think:
 

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We had some like that. They never stopped ever. They were big, more than 15 lbs. At the time we thought we were buying a good quality food for them. It was the food vets use to get cats to eat when they won't. (it wasn't Science diet, it isn't made any longer.) When we switched to a different food, with a different set of cats there was none of the urgency.

I"m glad you are certain they won't trip you and you will never splash them with boiling water, or sauce. Scalding is terribly painful and sometimes they can't be saved when it happens.

If the older cat didn't teach her to do this. And she has consistently done it, then it's possible the food you are feeding her isn't enough. Not quantity, you seem to give her a lot, but that something she needs - vitamin or mineral - is not in the food, or at least not as much as she needs.
 

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That would be great so they can keep company (or fight :lol: ), but it would be unfair because Giada is so quiet lately, and sometimes she sleeps while we're eating.
If Giada is sleeping, then it doesn't sound to me like she would care one way or the other. But, the fact is, being fair to Freya is actually the opposite of what you are doing. You are not being fair to her to not train her to understand that her behavior is unacceptable. From all that I can recall, health issues have been ruled out. That being the case, you are dealing with a behavioral issue.
Yes, I do know this tactic, and I had thought of it, but I'm sure I wouldn't be consistent. Not because I wouldn't like to do that, but because I'm sure that sometimes I could forget it and not do it, and this would have the plan fail. Then I should tell my wife to do just the same, and we're two that might be inconsistent.
It's like anything else in life - yes, you will screw up, but then you forge ahead anyway. And, for the snacking, I didn't suggest you put her in a time out before she starts begging - only at the time she starts begging. That, to me, seems like a pretty good way not to forget!
 
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Antonio65

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If the older cat didn't teach her to do this. And she has consistently done it, then it's possible the food you are feeding her isn't enough. Not quantity, you seem to give her a lot, but that something she needs - vitamin or mineral - is not in the food, or at least not as much as she needs.
The food I'm giving her is wet food for kitten, and dry food for kitten and adult. She eats a lot of it.
But there are times when she doesn't finish her meal (as if she's full), but then she comes to pester us :lol:
So, it's more like she wants to eat whatever she sees, than being really hungry.
 

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I really hope for your case the spay will calm her down, but I've lived with a cat before who was 6 years old, spayed, 100% healthy vet approved being fed good wet food who exhibits the same extreme food obsessed behavior. 2 hours before every meal time she would start scream meowing nonstop. When she is fed she eats it all super fast even watered down, and then lick the plates extremely clean and start knocking the plate around looking for food. Jamming her face trying to get at my cats food as they are eating it (I soon started feeding my cat in my own room to avoid her)

Stuff like constantly going into the kitchen and even licking our oil dispenser bottles just for the traces of oil on the lid. More than once I ate a small snack and she will try to force her head into my mouth to get at my chewed food. One of the more extreme acts was when I was eating ice cream and she scratched my lips badly in order to try to get ice cream out of my mouth to eat. She wasn't my cat but my roommate's at the time, and they didn't seem to care much about her behavior but it is definitely not something I can imagine living with for years. My roommate never fed her human food nor gave her table scraps so she was not the one who started this behavior.
 

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Kflowers

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Antonio said Not sure if I have understood it right, but couldn't they/she squirm out of whatever is containing them/her and jump on the table again? After all they are cats

If she could squirm out of it, you need something with closer set bars. A birdcage, perhaps. They make dozens of different sorts and many are quite pretty, some wood, some metal, as long as she has room to sit up right and lie down, she'd be fine.

I've seen several threads, not on this site, but others, where cats and dogs just want to have a chair at the table so they can be part of what you're doing. These aren't trying to take your food. So, you could offer her that --being a part of what you're doing -- without letting her reach the food. That's what the bird cage on top of the high chair would achieve.
 

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If you think she's getting enough nutrients, and she's refusing to eat enough for the volume she needs perhaps it is a sharing thing, as I said. If she's not gaining weight the way she's expected to, perhaps you should have an ultrasound run to be sure everything is where it should be and nothing pressing on the wrong part.

As Feebysowner said, you set the goal, you work at the goal, you mess up because you are human, but you return to working at the goal. If people didn't do this no child would have grown up and the planet would have no people on it.
 
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Antonio65

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I really hope for your case the spay will calm her down, but I've lived with a cat before who was 6 years old, spayed, 100% healthy vet approved being fed good wet food who exhibits the same extreme food obsessed behavior.
Well, it seems I'm not alone in this nightmare.
Anyway, in the last few days she has been less obsessed, like she has read the thread and knows we are working behind her. Giving her a dish of green salad is enough to keep her busy during our meals, though it doesn't always work and she still prefers our food, even if it's the same salad.
 
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Antonio65

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Have you tried a licking mat or puzzle bowl? Delilah is a slow eater but my sister's beagle is a fast eater. I got one of those bowls when I was dog sitting for 2 weeks and it slowed him down. The problem there was her husband didn't think Buddy needed it and refused to use it when they got back from vacation.

FRISCO Silicone Treat Lick Mat, 2 Count - Chewy.com
OUTWARD HOUND Fun Feeder Interactive Dog Bowl, Purple, Regular - Chewy.com
I have been advised this before, but I wouldn't like to put the wonderful dishes I bought for her to replace tem with a puzzle dish. Also, I believe they are a bit harder to clean and wash.
 
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