Separate Feeding Areas With Limited Space

Discussion in 'Cat Nutrition' started by Jettpack, Jul 17, 2017.

  1. Jettpack

    Jettpack Thread Starter TCS Member Kitten

    Jul 17, 2017
    I've skimmed through a lot of these forums, here and other places to find help with feeding my two cats separately, but the answers haven't been tailored to my specific situation. I apologize for such a long post, I just really need some help easing this transition on my scaredy cat.

    I have one cat that has IBD, the other in kidney failure so they each have their own diet. Up until this weekend it was pretty easy, Kidney cat (Kaluha) got fed in the bedroom with the door shut and IBD cat (Leko) got fed outside the door. I began feeding separately because Leko will eat all of Kaluha's food and he was starting to lose weight. Kaluha does better confined because of his anxiety, the quiet space keeps him from gettig distracted and he knows that he gets to come out once his bowl is empty, I had him down to finishing his meal in about 20 minutes.

    I've moved this weekend, into a loft, so the only door in the apartment now is the bathroom. The bedroom is upstairs, but is open to the apartment/stairwell. I've kept up with the feeding times but finding a place for Kaluha to eat his meal comfortable has been a hassle. The first night I tried feeding him in the bathroom and he freaked out. Then I tried the kitchen and just blocked the entry way so Leko couldn't get in, but this isn't a feasible solution since I can't stand around for 20-30 minutes and watch them eat. This morning I tried feeding him upstairs in the bedroom and put Leko up in the bathroom, but he just nibbled a bit, then refused to eat and went under the bed.

    I assuming some of the issue here is Kaluha still being stressed in the new place, even though he's seemed to relax a bit and is playing and drinking water fine. I'm not sure if I should just keep putting him in the bathroom with his food since there isn't anything in there to distract him and hope he eventually gets use to it and calms down, or If I should try a baby gate at the top of the stairwell?

    The whole process of getting Kaluha on a feeding schedule, along with eating this kidney diet, has been a very long and drawn out process. Its been very frustrating with a lot of vet assistance. I had finally gotten him consistently eating and staying hydrated on his own a couple months ago and I would hate for this move to undo everything. It was just much easier when I had my small bedroom to shut him in. He doesn't do well in pet carriers/cages and that would be a battle, I've looked into the chip pet feeders but with how jumpy he is I'm not sure if he would take to it and since it's so expensive, i'm trying to put off going that route.
  2. abyeb

    abyeb Charlie's Purrson Forum Helper

    Feb 18, 2017
    How about a perch? One cat can be fed on top, the other one on bottom, and you can monitor to be sure that no one goes where they're not supposed to.
  3. Jettpack

    Jettpack Thread Starter TCS Member Kitten

    Jul 17, 2017
    Leko will be very persistent when it comes to eating food that isn't hers so she pretty much can't have any way to access Kaluha's food, and Kaluha is passive and will walk away from his bowl as soon as she tries to get into it. Kaluha has a hard time staying focused on eating if he isn't confined. He will walk away and won't go back to his bowl without a lot coaxing, which is why having him in my room by himself worked the best. It was quiet and he had nothing to do but eat if he wanted out. I considered playing hardball and just picking up the food after 20-30 minutes when he hasn't eaten, but in the past he has just starved himself out of stubbornness and I can't allot him to go too long without eating.

    I've also tried putting Leko up in the bathroom and feeding kaluha in the main area of the house and he eventually just walks away from his food to sit in the window. I'm hoping a lot of the issue here is the new space but I really need to get him eating his full meals as soon as possible.
  4. maggiedemi

    maggiedemi TCS Member Top Cat

    Mar 26, 2017
    Upstate NY
    I would try the bathroom a couple more times to see if he gets used to it. If not, I would try the baby gate on the bedroom door.
  5. Jettpack

    Jettpack Thread Starter TCS Member Kitten

    Jul 17, 2017
    I'll keep trying this week with the bathroom in hopes that he will settle down.
    maggiedemi purraised this.
  6. catcrazycanuck

    catcrazycanuck TCS Member Young Cat

    Jul 12, 2017
    I have had the same issue with 1 IBD cat, 1 cat who walks away and one overweight piggy "Tiggy" cat who will eat it all given a chance Likewise we do the lock up and a lot of hovering and putting food away if it's not eaten right away. Trying to watch is hard because if you turn your head for a minute Tiggy comes out of nowhere and is in the bowl.
    I like the baby gate idea since you don't have doors. Otherwise how about feeding in a large kennel? We considered this for ours jnstead of trapzing upstairs (our main is totally open plan). We didn't try it but maybe? Even if it's temporary until everyone settles into the new place.
  7. willerin

    willerin TCS Member Young Cat

    Jul 18, 2016
    Chicago, IL
    My cats are like this, but I discovered my cat who likes to eat more won't jump up on this little table we have that's about waist height. So I feed the other cat on the table and she can come and go to her food as she pleases without her sister bothering her. Hope you figure it out!
  8. Jettpack

    Jettpack Thread Starter TCS Member Kitten

    Jul 17, 2017
    I was considering the Kennel idea, but as a last resort. I have to have a pet sitter on occasion when I leave town for work and this dang cat is afraid of everyone outside of myself, my boyfriend, and a couple friends that have been around him for a number of years. Otherwise he insta hides before a person can even knock on the front door. Ideally I would like to get him comfortable eating upstairs so the sitter can put his food out and go back down, allowing him to sneak out and eat.

    Last night the 2nd attempt in the bathroom was a huge fail. He freaked out and started slamming the door.... he has separation issues. I ended up feeding him by his favorite window and just hovered around shooing the other cat away so he could finish. He officially ate his first whole meal since the move! I'm sure it'll be a lot of trial and error over the next couple weeks, I appreciate all the suggestions so far! If anyone else has any other creative ideas I would love to hear them!
  9. Amster

    Amster TCS Member Kitten

    Jul 19, 2017
    We have to feed ours separately too so we made a little "food hut" out of a Rubbermaid tub for one of them and put it next to her favorite spot and it has worked really well for us!

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