Empty bowl doesn’t mean cat ate food

Abby munching on her favorite nuggets. KARIN SPICER/CONTRIBUTED

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Abby munching on her favorite nuggets. KARIN SPICER/CONTRIBUTED

Abby, our 16-year- old cat, has always enjoyed her savory chicken-and-rice nuggets on the corner kitchen counter. This has worked out well for her. The feisty feline could enjoy her food without Teddy, our 4-year old Lab, bothering her.

Why Teddy would want to eat cat food is beyond me but he’s not alone. Dogs love cat food.

Cats are obligate carnivores, which means it is a biological necessity for them to eat meat, writes Adrienne Janet Farricelli for pethelpful.com.

It’s different for dogs. Even though canines are classified as carnivores they are considered omnivorous, eating plant material as well at meat.

So why does Teddy love Abby’s, food? Cat food is made of high flavor rich protein. Unfortunately, too much of Abby’s food isn’t good for Teddy.

According to Elizabeth Geiser at rover.com, “Feeding your dog a cat food-only diet would be like feeding yourself McDonald’s every day. It might sound delicious at first, but in the long run, it’s a bad idea.”

Daily gastrointestinal distress, obesity risks and long-term kidney problems could result from Teddy eating too much of Abby’s food.

For over 15 years, we had the perfect place for Abby to enjoy her food. Our past dog, Lucy, and now, Teddy, couldn’t reach it. We never had to worry about either dog getting any of the feline’s food.

When it became too difficult for Abby to jump that high we moved her bowl to a lower bathroom counter. The cat would only have to climb a few steps to reach her favorite nuggets and Teddy still wouldn’t be able to reach them.

Again, this worked out great for us. Since Teddy couldn’t reach the bowl we didn’t have to worry about the Lab scooping up any of the prized nuggets. That all changed two months ago.

Our sassy but aging cat is now eating her food on the floor and Teddy’s lies in wait for her to finish so he can eat the remaining tidbits.

Teddy is pretty good at it, too. The clever Lab knows Abby’s dining schedule. He’s waiting by her bowl before she shows up for breakfast. At dinner, Teddy eats about two-thirds of the food in his bowl and the last third from his rolling Kong toy. When no more nuggets fall from the Kong’s hole, Teddy takes up his cat food-waiting position. The pooch strategically lies in the living room with clear sight of the hall leading into the master bedroom.

When Teddy sees Abby moving towards the hall, he slightly raises his head so as not to arouse the suspicions of his human family. After the canine sees the feline coming back out of the master bedroom he slowly walks in that direction.

If we see Teddy sauntering that way we’ll correct him. Teddy will stop, do his best “doggie sigh” and lie back down.

If we aren’t paying attention, we’ll soon hear the rattling of Abby’s bowl as Teddy’s large tongue licks it clean.

We have now become something like the hall monitors we all had in school. We watch the hall much more closely when Abby’s dining. Teddy doesn’t get a hall pass at those times.

So far, the hall monitors are winning about 80 percent of the time.


Healthy flavorful dog snacks

1. Apple slices without seeds

2. Cantaloupe

3. Bananas

4. Green Beans

5. Carrots

SOURCE: petmd.com

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