How To Keep Your Cats From Stealing Each Other’s Food

If your cats keep stealing each other's food, it's time for an intervention. These three tried and true methods will stop food thieves and promote healthy eating behaviors in both cats.

Some cats can’t seem to mind their own business – or their own food! Here are a few handy ways to stop furry food thieves in their tracks.

One of our cats started to steal the other's food, and I knew I had to step in... but how would I keep the peace? After doing a little research, I came up with three effective methods to keep cats from stealing each other's food. Click the picture to find out more.

In order to keep your cats from stealing each other’s food, you have to get crafty. I never thought the day would come when I would have to watch how much Misha eats, but here we are.

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To Catch A Food Thief

I noticed that Misha was getting distinctly chunkier as of late. At first I thought it was because we switched to 3/4 raw food in their diet, but I soon found out the truth.

Misha likes to swoop in after Tippy is done eating and devour her leftovers; in reality, Tippy is intimidated into giving up her meal early. Misha is tiny, but she’s also tough!

Why Stealing Each Other’s Food Is A Problem

It’s not just because Tippy isn’t getting to finish her meal. It’s also a matter of overeating for Misha. She’s naturally tiny, and although she isn’t overweight, eating too much makes her sick. This kind of behavior will lead to obesity if I’m not careful.

This begs the question: what can I do about it?

How To Stop Cats From Stealing Each Other’s Food

I researched a few different methods and came up with these solutions.

Feed Them Separately

This method works for me about half the time. Tippy gets weird about her 4 o’clock meal; she’ll refuse to come downstairs to eat, and trying to wrangle her is a no-go. I’ll leave Misha downstairs with her food and take Tippy’s food upstairs.

You can also try feeding them in separate rooms and shutting the door. Pet experts at The Nest recommend keeping them separated for a maximum of 30 minutes so they get used to finishing their meal in that time.

Use A Microchip Pet Feeder

This only works if both (or all) cats are microchipped. Microchip pet feeders latch on to your cat’s unique chip number and open only for them. Other kitties won’t be able to open the feeder because their chip’s info doesn’t match.

Microchip feeders are a great solution for pets who need prescription food, and they’ll make sure your pet gets their medication and meal without other cats stealing it. SureFeed’s microchip pet feeder works with all identification microchips, but they also sell RFID tags if your pet isn’t microchipped yet (however, the RFID tags aren’t foolproof like microchips are).

Watch Them

If you don’t have separate rooms to feed them in, you’re going to have to watch them. I have had to sit in the kitchen with both cats and physically block them from eating each other’s food. They’re determined, but eventually it becomes annoying enough that they get the picture.

You might have to use this method to determine which cat is stealing the other’s food in the first place if you merely suspect something’s going on. However, you can also start feeding them separately or using a microchip feeder before a problem arises. That way, they’ll learn to eat only out of their own food bowl.

Have you ever seen your cats stealing each other’s food? What method did you use to deter them? Let us know in the comments section below.

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6 Thoughts to “How To Keep Your Cats From Stealing Each Other’s Food”

  1. Great tips! That microchip food dispenser is a pretty clever idea for a house with multiple kitties. I don’t have a kitty fur sib, so I don’t have to compete for my food or worry that another kitty will get to it first. The D-O-G, on the other hand, has tried to get at MY food in the past. She even climbed on MY stool and stood on MY counter where MY food is kept & slurped up the meal! She only did that a few times, thankfully! Tee hee hee!

    1. That naughty puppy! It’s a good thing she behaves most of the time. 😉

  2. I have made it a regular part of my routine to sit and watch my cats as they eat. The three cats I owned a few years ago were on different diets, so it was necessary. The two I have now eat the same food, but whoever finishes first will often go to their still feasting companion and start in. Just a firm no is enough to stop the offending kitty without hard feelings.

    1. I don’t think my cats understand the meaning of “no”. lol Well, actually they do, but they must ignore me on purpose. That’s great that you’re able to keep an eye on them! Nothing beats monitoring them yourself. 🙂

  3. Sammy likes to make the round and “help” everyone with their meals.

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