Ollie goes crazy for food. How can I calm him down?

Destinyp113

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I recently adopted a new cat (Ollie) almost two months ago and he is getting along with my resident cat (Binx) very well. But I have noticed Ollie gets very crazy when it’s time to eat or when I give them treats. Binx is asthmatic so he gets an inhaler twice a day and after I give him a treat. I also give one to Ollie just to be fair. I give Binx his treat first and Ollie runs toward it and goes absolutely crazy for it. He works himself up so much that he has almost thrown up many times. There were times where he has almost hurt himself trying to get to it. I usually try to hold him until Binx is done and during this time he really wrestles to get down and get it. If it’s too much I put him in a separate room until Binx is done and I wait for him to calm down before giving him his treat.

He also does this with his meals. He scarfs food down very fast (even with a slow feeder) and tries to get to Binx’s dish. I’ve had to separate them completely during meal times and I’ve now noticed Binx will wait until Ollie is in the other room to start eating and he will take a lot longer to finish then he used to. They are both fed a home made food recipe and Ollie is fed 4 - 4.5oz a day and is 8 pounds so I’m pretty sure he is getting enough food during his meals.
How can I work with Ollie to calm him down around food? I’m not sure if waiting for him to calm down before giving a treat will work in the long term. I also want to make sure Binx is comfortable during meal times.
 
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LTS3

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Do you know the history of the new adopted cat? Former strays and cats from hoarding and other situations are often food insecure so when they see food, they gobble down as much as they can and still want more. It takes time and patience for such cats to learn that they will always have food available.

What is your home diet recipe? 4 oz of food daily may seem a lot but calorie-wise it may not be enough for Ollie's needs. It's generally suggested to feed 20 to 25 calories per pound of ideal body weight daily. Does the recipe have a nutritional analysis per serving size?
 

rubysmama

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Hello and welcome to TCS. As soon as I read your thread title, I could picture exactly what you're going through, as I went through the same thing when I adopted my Ruby. She was totally, 100% food obsessed. She'd lick her dish clean no matter how much food I gave her. And she was constantly on the lookout for something to eat. I eventually learned, as LTS3 LTS3 has mentioned, that this behaviour is common with former strays.

The good news is, eventually your Ollie should calm down with his food obsession, and eat more slowly, and even maybe leave some in his dish for later. With Ruby, I think it took 6 or 7 months. So it didn't happen overnight. But one day I was surprised to look at her dish and see food still in it, and Ruby no where in sight.

Of course, as LTS3 LTS3 also mentioned, it is possible that Ollie is actually hungry, and that he's not getting enough calories a day. But if he was a stray, it's more likely that he's dealing with stray cat food obsession.

Until he relaxes around food, you may have to feed him and Binx in separate rooms, so that he doesn't try to eat Binx's food. That way you'll also prevent Binx from feeling threatened or bullied. Since they're already friends, you don't want to do anything to threaten that.

Here's a short TCS article on How Much Food Should I Feed My Cat? – TheCatSite Articles that might be helpful.
 
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