Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Feeding Cats: Seven Ways To Get A Fussy Cat To Eat

Many cat owners become worried that their fussy-eater will go hungry or will become malnourished. There are many reasons why cats refuse to eat. Here are some tips on how you can encourage your fussy eater to dig in.

If your cat has just recently become fussy about their food, or their appetite has suddenly changed, this could be a sign of illness and you should get him/her checked by your vet.
Here are some tips to entice a healthy cat to eat:

1. Warm the food to body temperature. This will make the food smellier and make it more appetizing. Warm dry food for a few minutes on low heat in an oven or warm wet food in a microwave for ten seconds.

2. Mix a tasty canned food with your cat's usual food to induce your cat to eat. Alternatively, if you open a can of tuna, salmon or sardines for yourself, you can mix some of it in with the cat's food.

3. Don't give your cat more than 10 minutes to eat what is in the bowl. If the food is still there, take the bowl away. Your cat is more likely to eat food that is in short supply and only available briefly.

4. Your cat's nose may not be smelling the food very well. It may be helpful to clean your cat's nose to improve it's smelling ability. This strategy may seem strange but is recommended by a vet.

5. Start the meal by feeding your cat from your hand. Once eating, they will usually continue voluntarily.

6. Place the food in a quiet, traffic-free area of the house or yard. There may be too many distractions or things to upset a nervous cat.

7. Feed your cat a few times a day, in smaller quantities, when your cat asks for it. For most cats a small amount of food at a time is enough. This helps to avoid overfeeding and should stop your cat from looking for food elsewhere.

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