September 14, 2009

Feline Feeding Frenzy

My cats Sisy and Fala are getting older and more stuck in their ways. Both have routines that defy human logic, but seem to work for them. Sisy behaves like a crabby elderly woman, going to bed right after dinner and getting up at six a.m. to wake Husband by sticking her cold nose on his. She reminds me of the character played by Ruth Buzzi on the 1960s variety show Laugh In, who hit little old man character Arte Johnson with her huge purse. Don’t mess with Sisy.

Sisy is diabetic and requires two daily doses of insulin via a needle. She gets 5 units in the morning and 5 units in the evening. She knows food will follow the shot, and generally does not flinch. After the shot, she gets her “crunchies.” Crunchies are her special food that come from the vet and cost about eight thousand dollars a bag (not really, but it seems like it.)

When she first became diabetic, the vet suggested that we feed Sisy and Fala separately. Seriously, do vets even study cats at vet school? Feeding cats is, like, herding cats.

We decided Fala could eat Sisy’s crunchies and that would be fine. We purchased a double bowl and put food on either side.

After Sisy gets her shot, she checks out both sides of the bowl and selects the one that has the most food, even if the difference is infinitesimal. Then she eats all of it while Fala stands back, waiting his turn patiently. She IS the Alpha Kitty. Then Sisy moves to the second bowl and eats some of it. Because she is nearly toothless, she eats at a snail’s pace and takes individual crunchies out of the bowl, bites them in half, lets the other half drop on the floor, and eventually eats this. All while Fala stands there watching. Whatever miserable crumbles remain belong to Fala.

About a year ago Fala got a serious bladder infection and almost died at the Overnight Pet Hospital (which should be called the Mandarin Siamese because of the cost). After recovery the vet said that Fala had to eat special canned food.
And that we absolutely had to separate the cats for their meals.
This is a nearly impossible task. About the only solution would be to buy separate houses for them, which seemed over the top. And I don’t want to live away from Husband.

We had the usual Alpha Kitty Injection and Feeding Schedule in the a.m. and p.m. and added another feeding for Fala of the canned food. I tried to feed him when Sisy was napping somewhere, but soon she recognized the sound of the can’s pop-top and came running.

At first I put a small amount of canned food on a paper plate but they didn’t eat it all. In fact the cats – who both have lost many teeth – just mashed down the food and ate off the top layer. I thought maybe they needed a bowl so I got some cheap plastic Wally World bowls and they wouldn’t eat ANY of the food out of the bowls.

Does the plastic give off an odor?
Is it shaped wrong? Is the texture of the bowl weird?
Don’t they like purple and orange?
What is the problem?
Why am I worried about this? Too much time on my hands. Quoth the raven.