There are plenty of reasons why you may need to feed two or more cats separately. The problem is, not that many people know how to go about this properly. So, we wanted to put together a little guide on how you can transition your cats to eating separately from one another.
Feeding two cats separately is just a case of keeping them in separate rooms while they eat. If you don’t have separate rooms, then you could just feed them at different times of the day. The greatest challenge you will probably face is switching your cats from free-feeding to meal feeding. However, even this shouldn’t be that much of a problem.
We want to expand upon this a little bit for you. Sure, we know that keeping two cats fed separately probably isn’t going to be that hard. However, we do have a little bit of extra information to share with you that could probably make your life a whole lot easier.
How to Feed Two Cats Separately?
There are two problems that you are going to face when you are attempting to feed two cats separately:
- Meal feeding
- Separating the cats
Let’s break them down one by one. We will start with the latter. That is the easier of the two problems to deal with.
Separating the Cats
You have a few options for separating the cats. Our favorite method is to keep them in separate rooms while they are eating. It makes it a little bit easier for you to plan.
There are some people that will stagger the meal times for their cats and only use one room for feeding. The problem with this method is that it takes double the amount of time. We are sure that you don’t want to dedicate a good chunk of your day to feeding your cats, right?
There are ways to barrier the two cats if they are in the same room. However, honestly, using separate rooms is always the safest bet. It doesn’t really matter where the cat eats. Just try to ensure that you always feed them in the same room so they know that they are there to chow down.
This is actually the bigger problem. Most people feed their cats through free-feeding. This means the bowls are out and the cats can eat whenever they want. This doesn’t really work when you are feeding cats separately. This means that you need to transition to meal feeding.
Actually transitioning to meal feeding isn’t that much of a problem. However, for a good while, you are going to be having your cat bug you because they do not have any access to their food. it is irritating, to say the least.
When you are meal feeding, your aim is to try and feed your cats 2-3 meals per day. You should always ensure that this is at the same time so that your cat knows when to eat.
We find the best way to tackle meal feeding is to just jump in head-first and take their free-feeding bowl away. Yes. The cats will complain.
At mealtimes, you should put the cat’s bowl down in their designated area and guide them to it. Give them 10-20 minutes to eat as much as they want and take the bowl away.
It shouldn’t take too long before you get into the swing of things. If the cat starts to complain a bit, then just calm them down. Their next meal time shouldn’t be that far away.
Do You Need To Feed Your Cats Separately?
In many cases, you do not need to feed your cats separately. A lot of people will use ‘free feeding’ with their cats i.e. they just set up a couple of bowls and the cats go crazy eating the food that they want. There are only a few times that you really do need to be feeding your cats separately. This includes:
- If the cats have specific diets i.e. if one cat needs to eat a certain type of food due to a medical condition.
- If the cats are of different ages. Kittens cannot eat food made for adult cats, for instance.
- If one cat tends to take over and try to eat the food of the other cat.
In an ideal world, you would never have to feed the cats separately. It just causes way too much aggravation. So, keep an eye on your kitties. Chances are that you do not have to go through the rigmarole of separating them up at food time.
Should You Feed a Cat and a Dog Separately?
You really should be feeding your cat and dos separately. Cat and dog food are not the same. So, while we are at it, do not feed cats and dogs the same food. It will result in them suffering from nutritional deficiencies. Therefore, it is important that they do not eat together as you run the risk of the two of them eating each other’s food, and that is going to result in all sorts of health issues.
Now, a dog could probably get away with eating some cat food. That isn’t going to be too much of a problem. They will be deficient in a nutrient or two, but it is not going to be the end of the world unless they are doing it long-term. Dogs do tend to eat a lot more cats. So, even if they ate your cat’s food, they are still going to eat their own food anyway.
The main issue is if your cats decide to fill up on the dog’s food. Cat food has something known as taurine in it. This is a nutrient that is absolutely vital for the development of cats. It helps with both their eye and heart health. If your cat does not get taurine into its diet, then it could end up blind, or it could potentially die. Basically, it is not a good thing. Dog food does not have taurine added to it. This means that if your cat only eats dog food, then they will get incredibly sick.
Remember; dog food tends to be a mix of vegetables and meat. This is because dogs are omnivores. Cat food contains only meat, or at least it should do because they are carnivores.
How to Feed Two Cats Separately Final Thoughts
Feeding two cats separately isn’t all that difficult. In fact, chances are that you probably do not need to feed them separately at all. The only times that you will feed to feed them separately is if you have cats with special dietary needs due to their health or age. You may also need to feed them separately if you have a particularly selfish cat. Just keep them in separate rooms while they eat and you should be fine.
Do you have to feed you two cats separately? Let us know in the comment section below and as always feel free to checkout our other articles on cat behavior.