Scared he will not eat enough

sasha.mccartney2

TCS Member
Thread starter
Young Cat
Joined
May 13, 2020
Messages
23
Reaction score
26
Location
Germany
Hello fellow cat-enthusiasts!

About two weeks ago I adopted a lovely 5 year old rescue from Bulgaria we named Haku. Over the course of the last two weeks he got relatively attached to us, which makes me very happy. He comes cuddle and will sleep on the bed next to me. We adopted him from a rescue from Bulgaria who transported him along a lot other cats and dogs to Germany, so we figured he'd be stressed and anxious. Even yet he will crawl under the bed when my boyfriend or I try to get out of bed. But I think he'll get over that eventually.

What scares me a little though is how unregularly he eats sometimes. On some days it seems like he doesn't eat at all, while on others I find his food bowl licked clean. The transport people gave me three pouches of the wet food he received at the rescue and a little bag of dry food. The wet food is whiskas and the dry food probably some similar cheap choice, it doesn't have a brand name on the bag, as they just filled some in a little plastic bag.

The first two days I gave him the whiskas pouches and dry food, but since he has almost all his teeth removed I was advised to switch to a wet food only diet. I introduced him to Bozita wet food as it's similar in texture to the whiskas and in my opinion better quality. He seems to eat it fine. I try to offer him just the wet food and when it dries out i put water in and mix it with a spoon, if he still doesn't eat I give him a bit of dry food. Sometimes it takes him more than 24h until finally eating, though I found out if I would just offer him the dry food by itself he will eat it when hungry.

I'm a bit scared that he's not eating enough, I don't know his correct weight yet, but I assume it's about 5-6kg, maybe even a bit more, he's a big boy. At least he's drinking enough, I saw him a couple of times using the water fountain, to my delight.

The next 2 weeks I will be off work so I have more time monitoring his eating habits. This morning I gave him a small bowl with just dry food and after he ate that, I gave him one spoon of bozita alongsite some dry food. Surprisingly enough he ate the wet food and left the dry food. I just added another spoon as soon as he ate, in hope he will eventually eat his dayly portion in the course of a day.

As it seems like he prefers eating small bits over the course of the day I'd like to introduce him to a surefeed feeder eventually, so the wet food stays fresh longer. When do you think it's appropriate to introduce it? I left it in the room for a couple of days and got it to save his chip, but he seems iffy about the feeder so far.
 

ArtNJ

TCS Member
Top Cat
Joined
Jun 1, 2017
Messages
3,062
Reaction score
3,388
I understand that cats without teeth can often take a very long time to eat dry food because it can cause discomfort. So yes, the advice to do all wet food was probably right.

Beyond that, with the cat not being fully settled in yet, he might not want to eat when you are actively roaming about. Especially if the food dish is somewhere busy like the kitchen. If you leave some out for him at night, he might be more comfortable eating then.

Finally, have you taken the cat for a vet check with a German vet (sounds like you live in Germany)? To state the obvious, cats don't lose their teeth at a young age unless a lot has gone wrong in their lives. The Bulgaria rescue surely has their heart in the right place, but I don't think it would be prudent to assume you got a complete report.
 

MoochNNoodles

TCS Member
Veteran
Joined
Apr 30, 2005
Messages
31,909
Reaction score
8,104
Location
Where my cats are
Some cats are grazers. In the wild they typically eat several small meals of whatever they hunt. So picture mice and bird size meals. I’ve had cats who graze and cats who will eat everything in sight immediately. I have also had to try different foods to see what some will eat. And sometimes toppings. I try to vary the flavors from there. Often if I fed one flavor for breakfast; they prefer another for dinner. Sometimes they will love one for a while; then get tired of it.

I agree with Artnj’s comment about possibly not wanting to eat when you are nearby. Its also possible he feels more confident eating with you close because he’s not fully settled but has begun to bond with you. Cats also pick up our emotions.

Overall I think you both need more time to settle in. He just might be satisfied with what he’s taking in. I often throw out uneaten food. And have clean bowls at other times. My cat is 15 so her appetite has changed over the years and sometimes day to day. If his weight seems consistent and his coat healthy; I think you are ok. If he stops eating for more than a few days; that can be dangerous and requires a vet visit.
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #4

sasha.mccartney2

TCS Member
Thread starter
Young Cat
Joined
May 13, 2020
Messages
23
Reaction score
26
Location
Germany
The rescue advised me to introduce him to the vet after 4 weeks of him living with us, so that'd be in about 2 weeks. They say the vet in Bulgaria had to remove his teeth due to them being in terrible condition, they basically got him from the streets and got him the full treatment.

At the moment he's only allowed in the bedroom and the bathroom, we want to slowly extent the area he can roam around freely because we got told it's better for him to reduce stress. So his food bowl is in the bedroom at the moment. I could try moving it to the small hallway between bedroom and bathroom, where he'd be less monitored.
 
Top