(Hershey, PA, USA)
Mittens (4 white paws) &Thimble
Bristow: The Model :-)
Bristow: The Polydactyl
Greetings fellow Cat Lover!
My cat, Mittens, of 17 years passed away this summer of 'old age'. We were at the vets daily for a week until she finally gave up the fight. I adored her and suffered a mild depression (to my surprise)for weeks to follow. To assuage my grief, my daughter and I decided to rescue a cat 'from death's row'. We searched for an affectionate cat and found one (We named her 'Bristow' after Sidney Bristow of Alias, because Sidney cheated death every day and Bristow, the cat, cheated death!). She came to us with a internal stomach problem ... many vet trips later, purchasing prescription food, pet insurance, and love, she has earned Dr. Chris' bill of health. She has also gained over 1 lb! Even when she was stressed, she ate well wink wink.
She, however, continues to consume her food in an abnormally rushed, desperate frenzy. (Mittens was 6 lbs and ate like the stero-typed finicky cat eater; as does my other cat). Bristow begins begging for food precisely the moment she knows my alarm will go off (5:25 am). Begs after she gets the first 'ration', continues to beg the moment I come in the door from work (when I give her the rest of her ration), and until bedtime. I attribute the desperate eating to her 'previous' life (possibly when living at the Humane Society where she may have had to 'fight' for her food; and whatever happened to her before being rescued by the Humane Society).
All this to ask, will I ever train her? Or has she already trained me?? Is it better to feed her once, maybe before bed, so she can't beg so much? Or better to keep feeding her 2 separate times? BTW, I feed her the prescribed 1/3 cup dry food because she had started gaining continually and the doctor said it was time to cut down her food intake (as well, I know that is not healthy for her.
Thanks for your input. I look forward to checking out your website often and sharing with others!
Thank you for the adorable pictures! You have a beautiful family. I am sorry to hear of the loss of your precious Mittens. Depression is not uncommon after the loss of a member of a cat family. You are not alone.
I agree with you completely that the obsession with food probably stems from her background and not having enough to eat at some point early on. This cat behavior most often gets better over time although sometimes it never goes away completely.
I believe cats should have more than one meal per day so I would not decrease the number of feedings. Also, you cannot know the right amount of food for any cat based on what the manufacturers instructions say on the bag. Every cat is different genetically, metabolisms vary, and the amount of exercise is different from cat to cat.
I suggest to all cat owners these days that they cease feeding dry food because all dry food is too high in carbohydrates for cats. This has led to a population of obese cats and to an increase in cat diabetes.
Instead, I suggest you switch to canned food only and that you feed flavors that are low in carbohydrates. This may sound like very radical thinking to you and totally opposite to what you have been advised by others, but please go to this website and read a complete and very accurate explanation of what cats should eat.
Then go to this site and look at the carbohydrate column for all the canned foods listed and select the ones you wish to try that are 10 or less in the carb column. (I feed only 5 or less personally, but I also have a diabetic cat).
I switched all my cats from dry to canned a few months ago and have fed only foods that are 5 or less in the carb column. Tthey get as much as they want to eat and all are healthy. My 14-year-old, formerly 21 pound cat, now weighs around 15 pounds and is playing like a kitten for the first time in his life! And he gets to eat as much as he likes. (I feed them at least 3 times daily).
Your vet may not be familiar with this, many are not, and this may seem like radical new thinking to you, but it is the healthiest for cats and it works!
Thanks for writing. I hope you will let me know how it goes.