Let’s face it, even though we love them, too (well, some of us do) – dogs can be hogs! The cat’s food bowl is just not safe from that endless-pit-of-a-stomach that all doggies seem to have! Not that kitty isn’t just as guilty of wanting to try the dog’s food, but for this article, we are going to take kitty’s side and offer some tips for keeping the dog out of the cat’s plate.
Stay Out Of My Bowl, Fido!
Cat lovers. Some of us love dogs, too, some not so much. But if you have both dogs and cats, you know that it can be challenge to keep them out of each other’s food bowls. There are good reasons for both of them not to eat each other’s food, but for this article, we are going to try to keep the dog out of the cat’s food!
Why It Isn’t Good For Dogs To Eat Cat Food
Other than the obvious reason – because the cat food is there for the cat – there are nutritional reasons why the dog shouldn’t be eating the cat’s food. Once in a while isn’t going to hurt, but a constant diet of cat food will.
Cat food contains a lot more fat than dog food, and that will make Spot get…chubby. That can lead to all kinds of health problems, including heart disease, diabetes, diarrhea, vomiting, and even pancreatitis, which can be deadly. Dogs also need more fiber than cat food provides. And although dogs love meat, cat food is much higher in protein, and this can put a strain on a dog’s kidneys. Plus, there are several nutrients in cat food that dogs don’t need, because their bodies make them on their own, and a regular diet of cat food can cause an overload of these nutrients, which is just as bad as a deficiency.
Keeping The Dog Out Of The Cat Food
- Some dogs can be taught to leave the cat’s food alone. A sharp “NO!”, or LEAVE IT ALONE!”, repeated each time the dog goes near the cat’s bowl, may do the trick. But keep in mind that even the most well-behaved dog won’t necessarily be good if no one is looking.
- Put the cat’s food in a high place. Cats like high places, so this will be right up their alley. Of course, you don’t want to feed them on your kitchen counters, but a high shelf, up high in a cat tree, or on top of the washing machine or dryer would work well.
- Put the cat food in a room that has a cat door, so only the cat can enter the room when the main door is shut. Of course, this won’t work if your dog is as small as the cat and can fit through the door.
- As long as your dog isn’t one that can jump high fences, you can invest in a baby gate to block off a room or area, and feed the cat there.
- Feed your cat inside her cat crate.
- Buy or build a cat feeding station
Here are a couple of cat feeding stations that are available online. They are somewhat expensive, but if you can afford them, they are elegant solutions. If you are handy, or know someone who is, you could even build a DIY version of these feeders.
As of this writing, the following item is
out-of-stock no longer available, but would work well, as long as your dogs aren’t as small as your cats. It ‘s was from a UK company that originally carried several cat feeders, but seem to be catering to dog only now. But if you are, or know someone who is, handy with a hammer and saw, you might be able to make one yourself.
This feeder from MeowSpace also comes in various versions, including some that use a magnetic collar so that only your cat can have access. It’s basically a Plexiglas box with a cat door built in, and so again, someone who is handy could build their own, or something similar.
So once again, if your dog samples the cat’s meal once in a while, it isn’t going to hurt. But you won’t want them to make a habit of it. If you are the owner of both a cat and a dog, have you had a problem keeping them out of each other’s food? If so, what solutions have you come up with?