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Hello! I've been lurking for quite a while but am coming out to ask a pretty basic question.

Odysseus has been on a franken diet for 8 months now (just two weeks after he adopted us - took right to it!). Gobbles it right up or plays with it...typical child. ;)

He's a very un-picky eater and can eat whole, franken, or cut. But with the cut, he typically gives me a very insulting look, haha. :) I try to stay away from "bite size" pieces so we can keep his jaw strong. So the first two it is.

But with whole and franken comes great mess. We live in an apartment and just moved a couple of days ago. Typically what I would do is put his food on a piece of plastic in our skinny kitchen and he would eat there (and only sometimes drag it on the carpet). But since we have moved, he constantly puts the food on the BRAND NEW carpet. And it's a rental. Yikes! He's done this before, but would stop when I would put his food back.

I'm thinking he does this because the food scoots too much on plastic. It's smooth and ribless.

Anyway, just trying to get ideas on where everyone feeds their kitties? He's an indoor only kitty and is only allowed outside with his leash and collar, so outside isn't really an option.

What I'm thinking I'm going to end up doing is getting a sample carpet and having that be his plate and then storing it to the side when not in use (I'm sure the blood will soak into the carpet) but I would like to see other ideas first. I've been searching threads for this for a while but couldn't come across that much.

Thanks again! :kittyturn
 

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I got the idea to feed my cats in individual crates from AuntieCrazy, and it was the best idea ever! :D

We now have small wire dog crates, and everyone comes running to get into them when we call out that it's dinner time. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the link - I had come across that before but it didn't really help. He doesn't use plates (takes them right off and drags them to the carpet). I was thinking of getting a carpet mat (like a welcome mat but for interior) but I like the crate idea! Thanks!
 

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Yep, four of my six cats are crated during meal times; the last two eat off an elevated table and have never, ever, not once in five years, tried to take the food off their table. (Good kitties!)

An added advantage to crating them is that they feel more secure during dinner, and my thinnest cat, Rachel, is now relaxed enough to eat all of what I give her, instead of gulping a few bites and then scurrying away. She finally gained enough to completely alleviate my concerns, and has remained at a good weight for years now. :kittyturn

Good luck!

AC
 

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Hey brez,

I would just suggest trying something other than plastic. I would guess that the reason he doesn't like it is because it holds onto scents REALLY well - plates and the like do not - so he may think the plastic really stinks. Try a very large, shallow dinner plate or maybe even a meat platter. Then you may have to watch him eat and correct him when he takes his food off his plate (all it takes is a little touch a la Caesar Milan) but eventually he should learn to stay on his plate. It just takes some time and determination on both your parts. So, I'd suggest trying to feed him when you have the time to supervise him and help him learn to use his plate :)

Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Hey brez,

I would just suggest trying something other than plastic. I would guess that the reason he doesn't like it is because it holds onto scents REALLY well - plates and the like do not - so he may think the plastic really stinks. Try a very large, shallow dinner plate or maybe even a meat platter. Then you may have to watch him eat and correct him when he takes his food off his plate (all it takes is a little touch a la Caesar Milan) but eventually he should learn to stay on his plate. It just takes some time and determination on both your parts. So, I'd suggest trying to feed him when you have the time to supervise him and help him learn to use his plate :)

Good luck!

Thank you for the tip on the plastic! I didn't realize that. For a while, I was only feeding him on a rug and then switched back to plastic when we moved. That could be the culprit on this new behavior. :)

I'll probably switch back to the carpet. Purchased 2 mats for really cheap at the hardware store...should go back and get them again. :)
 

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Hey brez, you're welcome!

Do you mean to put a plate on the carpet? Cuz if not, I'm very confused, hehe.

I think in the future I am going to utilize Auntie Crazy's method and feed them in crates. I just need to figure out where to get them here in Europe and have the extra cash to do it.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
You know the mats that people put out in front of their doors? I have one of those, but made out of carpet material. That was his plate (VERY inexpensive and I got two in the package). He NEVER eats from a plate and always drags the whole thing off of it... I got sick of it and came across that. Brilliant!

When we moved, I went back to the plastic because the space wasn't practical for that mat. But I really like the idea of crating.

I think what we're going to do is actually put a baby gate up in the kitchen and put a fresh mat in there. He can easily jump over the gate, but I don't think he'll do that with food in his mouth. He doesn't carry anything for very long. :)
 

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I don't believe the cat is pulling the food onto the floor because he doesn't like some faint smell that might be coming off the plate, not at all. Cats do this all the time and it's likely a holdover from having to run and hide with their prey items so they could eat in peace.

That said, I would be really reluctant to feed on some type of carpet. How will you clean that thing? It's going to get real nasty real fast. It'll become an smorgasbord for bacteria and will probably become pretty stinky itself; it's doubtful the cat will mind, but I'm betting you will.

AC
 

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I agree with AC about the carpet - I don't recommend it. I still suggest trying to get a large plate and training him to use it. Or, at the very least, maybe you could feed him on the floor (linoleum) and clean it up every time?
 

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That said, I would be really reluctant to feed on some type of carpet. How will you clean that thing?
It's actually not stinky at all. And with how inexpensive it was (2 for $3 at the hardware store), I changed it out every 2 weeks. It was perfect for the tiny space we had.

But for now, we're going to block him off in the kitchen and have him eat in there and use a feeding mat (not the carpet). He refuses to eat on a plate and neither positive nor negative reinforcement works. As soon as we turn our back for even a second, he takes off with it. And won't eat while we're there. Little punk...
 

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It's actually not stinky at all. And with how inexpensive it was (2 for $3 at the hardware store), I changed it out every 2 weeks. It was perfect for the tiny space we had.

But for now, we're going to block him off in the kitchen and have him eat in there and use a feeding mat (not the carpet). He refuses to eat on a plate and neither positive nor negative reinforcement works. As soon as we turn our back for even a second, he takes off with it. And won't eat while we're there. Little punk...
A plastic mat that you can clean should be just fine. And, really, this is totally normal behavior. Of my six, only two will leave the food on the plate... most of the time. :wink The crates, however, have pull-out bottoms, so I just slide 'em out and scrub 'em down once a week.

AC
 

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i was going to ask the same thing i am glad i found this thread. One cat keeps it on the linoleum right next to his plate and i just wipe up. The other drags it off into the house. I like the crate idea. How does one go about getting a cat used to this? Hah crate trained cats, poor lancelot already is trained to sit he is going to end up thinking he is a dog lol
 

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Miu is crate trained and it's a wonderful thing. Clean up is a cinch and also since she's the slowest eater, it's perfect for her to eat peacefully without worry about others snatching her food.

Jack eats off a big dinner plate on top of a plastic place mat. It seems to work altho there's the odd time he drags it off the mat. I just spot clean if that happens and the mats are washed periodically.
 

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Jace eats on a small plate on a plastic placemat. He hasn't tried to take the food off the plate yet, just sits and gobbles it up. He actually prefers his meat in a bowl right now.

Crate training is a wonderful idea too! I'm more worried about my son playing in the cats food than the cat taking the food on the carpet though, this sounds like a great solution.
 

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Yeah someone on here (bless their soul), suggested crating as a solution to Miu's poop on the carpet problem. I started to feed her in there so she'd like the crate and it turned out to be beneficial in more ways than one.

I lock up the doors when she's eating. Then after she's done, I let her out. Sometimes if I'm in the middle of something, I finish it up b4 opening the doors and she's perfectly fine with waiting. You just have to train your cat to accept the crate and think of it as their safe house.

The crate can get expensive though. I got the biggest one I could get my hands on cuz I wanted her to be comfortable, which is 42" in length and that cost roughly $150CDN.

Jace eats on a small plate on a plastic placemat. He hasn't tried to take the food off the plate yet, just sits and gobbles it up. He actually prefers his meat in a bowl right now.

Crate training is a wonderful idea too! I'm more worried about my son playing in the cats food than the cat taking the food on the carpet though, this sounds like a great solution.
 

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Yeah someone on here (bless their soul), suggested crating as a solution to Miu's poop on the carpet problem. I started to feed her in there so she'd like the crate and it turned out to be beneficial in more ways than one.

I lock up the doors when she's eating. Then after she's done, I let her out. Sometimes if I'm in the middle of something, I finish it up b4 opening the doors and she's perfectly fine with waiting. You just have to train your cat to accept the crate and think of it as their safe house.

The crate can get expensive though. I got the biggest one I could get my hands on cuz I wanted her to be comfortable, which is 42" in length and that cost roughly $150CDN.
Interesting. I took the exact opposite tack and bought the smallest in which they could be comfortable (24"x18"x21") - they cost me about $35 each - and I set them loose as soon as all of them are finished eating.

Whatever works, eh?! :p

AC
 

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Ha, well because of her poop-on-the-carpet issues she sleeps in it overnight. I needed a big one so that it would fit her litterbox and bed. It's not actually a crate.
It's a dog kennel where I put the bottom half of a cat crate with a cat bed inside.

 
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