Why is my cat a finicky eater?FamilyPet
Cats aren’t pack animals, like dogs, so their relationship with food is very different. Their ancestors in the wild relied on hunting small prey animals, such as mice, birds and bugs. They ate when food was available.ifan opportunity for a meal occurred 10 times, they’d eat that many times.
So, if a cat is finicky, you need to figure out why, because not eating isn’t normal for a cat—and it could lead to a serious illness, such as hepatic lipidosis or dehydration.
Take your cat to the veterinarian for a checkup, because there can be many illnesses that affect appetite, including dental disease. Upon a physical examination, your veterinarian may detect your cat has a sore mouth or other condition.
Once any medical conditions have been ruled out, the possible cause behind your cat’s change in eating habits may be due to:
• Boredom: Think of the cats’ roots. In the wild, they hunted for prey. So fill one of those food puzzles with some dry food. She’ll have to play with it and knock it around to get the food to drop and, as a bonus, she’ll get to munch on the dry food (remember, cats are snackers, dating back to their roots). Be sure to use the food only as a snack and not to free feed.
• Fear. Are there other animals around? She may feel a little threatened and fearful. If so, try feeding them separately. Cats need to be fed in separate bowls, in separate areas—and in a place where one animal can’t sneak up and trap the cat. You may need to stick around for a few times while she eats to assure her that she’ll be protected.
• Food and snacks: Make sure food is fresh and not left out or past an expiration date. Also ask yourself: Is your cat eating too many snacks and, possibly table food? Remember, cats only need about 20-25 calories per body pound, and even less if the cat is inactive. She just may not be hungry. And keep in mind that pets who eat table food usually start to prefer that taste over their own food.
Finally, if you do decide to switch food, it may take a few days for her to start eating the new one. Sometimes, placing it next to a bowl of her old brand will help to speed up the process.