Food obsessed kitten - help! | Sphynxlair

Food obsessed kitten - help!

Discussion in 'Sphynx Cat Questions?' started by vicky215, Oct 16, 2016.

  1. vicky215

    vicky215Lairian

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    Hi all,

    I absolutely adore my little 6 month old sphynx kitten named Einstein but there is one thing that's really spoiling a perfect kitten - he's absolutely obsessed with food. To the point where I have to put him in another room at mealtimes :(.

    Is there anything that I can do to correct the behaviour? At the moment he will sneakily try all angles towards our plates and is relentless no matter how many times I move it away. Even the rustle of a packet of crisps can stir him from a slumber until he's on your shoulder trying to wear them as a hat.

    He's a lovely little thing and so amazingly affectionate, he wants constant contact which I don't mind as he's happy to perch himself on my shoulder. Not so fun when it's 3am and he wants to curl up on my face but I can deal with that as its kind of cute.

    The food thing however is driving me nuts! :( I've always had dogs whom can be easily trained out of this kind of behaviour but as a first time cat owner my firm no's are just met with a gaze that says, challenge accepted.

    Help! Any tricks that I'm missing?

    Thanks in advance!!




    Attached is the offender as I captured him for his bath :)
     

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    • Xandria

      XandriaGold Lairian Notable Member

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      Oh gosh, it's hard to be annoyed with such an adorable creature. Love the colouring.

      I sympathize completely. My Max is an angel around food, quite unlike his sister, Min. I was getting exasperated with her food bombing (she, too, is a massive cuddler and loves to be IN my face during sleep times and waking times).

      Hubby and I were discussing the other night that she has gotten much better. She tries to get to our food once, maybe twice, and then backs off. All we did was persistent discipline involving telling her NO and pushing her away. Crisps were an issue for Hubby. But what he did was crinkle an empty bag every now and again; Min would come running but there was nothing there -- he wasn't eating. So eventually he desensitized her to that sound. Now he can actually eat a bag of crisps in peace with her on his lap under a blanket.

      Patience, persistence.

      Good luck!

      ETA: Min is about to turn one year old, so it's possible it's a combination of persistence, discipline, and age.
       
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      • Pierre

        PierreLairian

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        Awww he's adorable!!! Pierre did this too, it took about a week of Stern "no's" and I'd push him away. I used to feed him when we ate too, he'd rush his food and come back for ours but after about a week he started to get it. He rarely moves now when we eat.
         
      • Catzzzmeow

        CatzzzmeowModerator Staff Member

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        Our Bengal was horrible about food. I always found success in hissing like a Momma cat to redirect behavioral issues...still do with the nakeds, but with the Bengal I sprayed canned air at him...not to hit him or in eyes, but it made a very loud hiss and he hated it. It got to a point that he just saw me reach for the can and he stopped quickly. You might give it a try. Had a few say it worked and a few with stubborn babies who were fearless. The other thing I would wonder are you free feeding your baby to avoid them being hungry? The first year most vets say just do wet 2 times (morning and night) and aduring day time free feed with kibble. They are growing at a fast rate and a Sphynx's metabolism is higher than most breeds. Once they hit a year look at their weight no consult with your vet what is the perfect weight to try to maintain @vicky215

        Patti
         
        Last edited: Oct 16, 2016
      • Hairless Blessing

        Hairless BlessingGold Lairian Notable Member

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        I was wondering, also, if he's, getting enough food?
        I feed Izmae, wet, 3 times a day and leave dry out,
        all the time. I give her what, I know, she, will eat.
        They, need more food. Than, a regular cat.
         
      • celsei

        celseiSenior Lairian Senior Lairian

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        Batty had a period of being obsessed with my food, especially cereal since he discovered it has milk which he loves (but isn't allowed because it gives him the smelliest farts). Sometimes I let him look at/sniff my food to realize it's not tasty. Once he does he usually just sits and watches me eat, he doesn't really try to get at my food anymore as he's realized I'll just keep moving it away from him and never have anything yummy like meat anyway - plus he gets to eat as much as he wants and is pretty docile once he's done pigging out. Sphynx kittens do need a lot of food so he might be trying to scavenge because he's hungry or if you have a proper meal time at a dinner table he might feel left out and be attention seeking, try playing with him before to tire him out and letting him have as much as he wants of his wet food. If he still goes for your food, try throwing a toy to redirect him - mine will run for it/fetch so it's an easy way to stop him from doing something.
         
        Last edited: Oct 17, 2016
      • lealea

        lealeaV.I.P Lairian V.I.P Lairian

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        Rosie our sphynx and our Bengal Poppy used to jump on the table at meal times and try their best to get into our food. We ended up shutting them in the kitchen while we ate, then letting them out once the plates were clean. This was met with pitiful crying for a while, but then we decided to feed them at the same time so they had full bellies and weren't so interested in coming for our food. After a while, we left the kitchen door open and they ate, then just went about their cat business without worrying whether they were missing out on our human food. Poppy was always right there with the rustle of a packet, too, but more so because she just wanted to play with it and run around with it in her mouth like a trophy!

        As Rosie got older, she lost interest. I still feed her 3 - 4 times a day raw, with in between biscuit meals if she asks for more, she's quite the greeedy guts! I'm raw vegan so she only really gets excited about my food when I make kale chips, lol, which for some reason she absolutely loves!

        I think they do grow out of it, but you have to be persistent. No treats from the table or while preparing food or they get confused as to what's right and wrong for them to have. Rosie is really good now and usually asks me to get her food out of she's getting hungry, with a little dance around my feet and the cutest mewing conversation with me until I open the fridge!

        A lot of patience is needed, but you'll get there. It's so easy to give in because they look so darn cute and adorable, but don't be afraid to be sharp with them when they're naughty! I melt as soon as I see her face fall in front of me, but if she's naughty she has to learn,s o try not to give in. My main problem with Rosie now is her jumping on the television! I can't stand to slap her bottom and to tell you the truth, I think she actually likes that anyway, lol, so I have to raise my voice and shut her on her own in the bedroom for 5 minutes. She hates that and starts to cry, but it stops the behaviour. I'm weak because this is usually followed by cuddles and smothering of kisses, too! But you get the point!
         
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        • Theedaysleeper

          TheedaysleeperSenior Lairian Senior Lairian

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          I'm no help, I'm just here to sqwee at that face! He could have all my snacks!
           
        • BearNaked

          BearNakedLairian

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          I love my little food freak. At 6 months now and slowly getting better. At least he is getting choosy over what foods he wants to try and rip out of my hands...
           

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          • Toa and Ross

            Toa and RossGold Lairian Notable Member

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            @BearNaked Your boy think the fridge is a buffet and he can pick out what he wants:)
             
          • victoriagrace

            victoriagraceLairian

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            I'm having issues with my Bea when it comes to food too. She was fine for the first three/four weeks (I picked her up at the beginning of June from my breeder so I'm still learning her quirks -- also a first time sphynx mom here) but this last week and a bit she's been terrible with going after human food; everything from climbing my legs in the kitchen to perch on my shoulder so she can shove her face all up in whatever is being made, to jumping and landing in the middle plates when her human turns away for a split second :shifty:

            I feed her wet canned food morning and night, and she's free fed royal canin kitten (the breeder recomended the brand). I've been noticing she's very.., aware of the noises associated with food, like the opening of cans and cutlery rattaling.
             
          • Maddie

            MaddieV.I.P Lairian V.I.P Lairian

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            @victoriagrace msking your own thread might be helpful so more people can see and help :)
            I personally would give kitty quiet time during dinner and lock them in my bedroom. I do it with Astrid if we have people over. she thinks the new people will feed her lol. Astrid will also shove her head into my mouth if I am eating chips. So I redirect and get her a toy. Slowly it is working. Definitely takes persistence!
             
          • Roki

            RokiLairian

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            LOL!! We had a cat that used to do that, but only to new people if they were talking excessively or yawning. He did it to my cousin once, whose eyes were closed because she was yawning & he just shoved his head right into her mouth! She did happen to have a wider mouth than anyone else in my family & I think he was fascinated by the mystery or something. We must have laughed about it for the rest of the day. (& still do, obviously!)


            Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
             
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            • Catzzzmeow

              CatzzzmeowModerator Staff Member

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              • Scary sphynx
              If you are consistent in how you redirect, you might have a chance. Hissing at them can help or try spraying canned air (keyboard cleaner) in the air, not at them. We had to train a Bengal we had with canned air. We eventually just showed him the can and he would stop his obsessive behaviors. Wee thought it was 'cute' when he was a kitten and found it fun until he just would not stop and it became crazy. You can do it....be patient and training yourselves is key. Another thought is feed her when you eat.


              Patti
               
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              • Catzzzmeow

                CatzzzmeowModerator Staff Member

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                @Roki omg hilarious about the yawning....lol
                 
              • Roki

                RokiLairian

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                My girl was quite obsessed with food (& will still eat your food in 3 seconds if you turn away from it!) & increasing her food amount & switching to a more nutrient-dense food recently seemed to help curb her desire to search out "food" to eat. We can't leave any food products out, ever, except maybe spices oh, and coffee, which she tries to cover up. ☠️

                I've tried various timings of feedings over the years & I'm curious what others think about it? If you have a pesky-around-food cat, how do you choose when to feed them; before, at the same time or after you are done eating? They're not quite the same as dogs with Alpha eating first and then everyone else and the Omega eating last. How does this concept (is it pure hierarchy?) work in cats, whether in a feline pride or in our cat/human/etc... families? Who decides the hierarchy; them or Us?

                (@admin - Should this be a different thread?)
                 
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                • admin

                  adminAdministrator Staff Member

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                  Its fine here. :)