Many of us are familiar with this scene: you are in the kitchen preparing your own food or even doing the dishes and your cat keeps begging for food. They keep meowing, they stand up against your legs or cupboards, they jump on the worktop, they drive you insane until…. you give in and give them some food….
I guess this answers the Wednesday Why? of today?!
Your cat will keep doing it because they know you’ll give in and end up giving them some food. The solution is simple enough: stop feeding them when they are begging for food. However, I know it’s not so simple to enforce. It takes will power and the ability to resist those plaintive meows. You may need to walk around wearing ear plugs for a few days. Whatever you do, don’t give in! The cat has learned that begging leads to food so now they have to learn that is no longer leads to food.
It is important not to let your cat jump on the worktop. If they do so simply put them on the floor, don’t punish them or yell at them, just keep putting them on the floor. If your cat is very persistent put them in a different room for a while
Things that can help you:
- feed your cat at specific times and only at those times
- use automatic feeders so your cat no longer associates you with feeding them
- use puzzle feeders (put food in there once or twice a day) so your cat always has access to food but they do have to work for it
- don’t feed them any table scraps or while you are cooking
It is always good to discuss this with the vet when you visit them for your cat’s annual health check. They can advise you how much you should be feeding your cat. If your cat is a healthy weight and you feed them accordingly, being hungry all the time could be a sign of illness, so do discuss it with your vet if you’re worried