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Eni

Puppy food guarding around my cat

6 posts in this topic

Eni   

Hi

 

just some advice on food guarding. My cocker puppy is now 8 months old and I have no problems with her at all. Extremely gentle, loving and obedient dog.

I also have a kitten and she has started to growl and air bite  if he walks by while she is eating. The kitten has tried to steal her food in the past while I wasn't watching. 

My questions are:

- Remove the kitten every time she eats (which I am currently doing) 

or

- Teach her not to food guard her bowl around the kitten

 

Which one is the better option? I don't want her to food guard around any family members so I will start to get the kids to drop food while she eats. Is this a good idea ?

Nobody really bothers her while eating anyway and I can call her and touch her and she has no reaction to me but I usually come with food if I do that.

 

Today I had both the puppy and kitten sitting in front of me for treat time and she was snapping at him to make him go away.

 

I am just asking if it's better to train her to accept the kitten or leave them separate while eating.

 

 

Thank you

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Dogsfevr   

The dog needs to learn acceptance ,i would feed the dog separate at present ie feed dog in a safe room or a crate  if you have one .
Then you need to find someone who can help your blended family enjoy & share .
How old is the kitten and did it arrive after the pup ?
Remember not sharing a food bowl isn't the end of the world or means the dog will turn into satan just simply like humans giving warnings signs to back off its my dinner ,no different to kids trying to steal something of a siblings plate & getting whacked.Some dogs just enjoy eating in peace & will happily share anything .All our dogs are feed in there crates but will accept anything being removed from them in an emergency & will share eat if they had too ,we just prefer the dinner time is a peaceful time approach & owning breeds prone to bloat & having geriatrics around we like all our dogs to enjoy meal time & not feel overwhelmed

Edited by Dogsfevr
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Rebanne   

I have 3 greyhounds with a cat. The cat's food is up put of the dogs reach. The cat is not interested in trying the dog's food but if she was the cat would be removed from the kitchen quick smart. The dogs are allowed to eat in peace, no swapping of bowls etc so cat not allowed either.

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Separate for food - but I would try and start some counter conditioning to help the pup feel less stressed about food. Take it super slow though. 

 

In my home the cat is always right, after all the consequences for the cat are a lot worse should interactions go sour. Though, tbh, my cats run a tight ship and tell the dog (mini schnauzer) all the time who is boss, he seems fairly comfortable having kitty overlords! 

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I have a sh!t of a cat (who is also quite wonderful in his own way :laugh: ) who is so oblivious to Em’s warnings around her food (and her babies!!!) that he risks getting himself killed on a daily basis. He literally puts his head in her bowl. No brain, no pain!!!

 

I prefer to remove the cats when the dogs are eating because it’s safer, especially in a busy household. However, when I have the time I will leave him in the room PROVIDED he stays on the cat tower. I don’t do this if I’m likely to be distracted. I also specifically pick times where I can work on counter conditioning BUT I would never expect the dogs to just tolerate food stealing by the cats. I wouldn’t allow a puppy or a child to harass the dogs and a cat is no different. 

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I would keep them separated at meal times but continue working on reducing the food guarding behavior (not with the aim of allowing the kitten to be around her during meal times, but to make treat times and meal times less stressful and safer for everyone).  I work in a vet hospital and seen a couple of cats badly injured (and one killed) after making the mistake of walking too close to a food guarding dog while it was being fed. Even though a cocker is a smallish dog, it would still be big enough to inflict some serious damage to the cat. 

 

A good resource is Mine!: A Practical Guide to Resource Guarding in Dogs

 

 

Edited by Cordyceps
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