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Multiple Cats with Special Diets, Oh My!!!

Most of us with multiple cats have run across this and it can take a bit of organizing and training to get your herd managed when it comes to feeding special foods for allergies or other medical reasons. One thing that helps is to have all of your cats on canned food and no dry food. This is the current recommendation from the Veterinarians. If you would like to read more on this, go to

Here is what we have and how we get it done multiple times every day-

We have four cats and three of them are on special diets. Two of them can eat the same food but the third needs a different food. Our fourth cat has no restrictions but we don’t want our other three to eat his food because of allergies. Three of our cats are also on medications that are ground up and mixed into their food as well. Sounds like a Mensa puzzle doesn’t it? It certainly can be complicated, especially at first, because all of our cats had to get used to a routine so that none of our cats ate the wrong food or got the wrong medications.

First, we make up all a bowl of the correct canned food with the proper medications mixed in for each of our cats. Our youngest cat is a very fast eater and very impatient about getting her food. She has food allergies so she eats Hills DD canned food. We feed her first on the kitchen counter. The next one to be fed is our cat who is a very aggressive eater and will run from bowl to bowl to eat everything in sight. She eats Hills DD canned food as well for her allergies and also has pills ground up and mixed in for her asthma. We feed her in our half bath that is not far from the kitchen and we close the door until she is done eating and we have picked up all of the other bowls. The third one to be fed is our cat who does not have a food allergy but has medications ground up and mixed in for his pancreatitis.  He is fed in the laundry room on the counter top.  The last one to get his bowl likes Royal Canin HP canned food instead of Hills DD canned for his food allergies and he also has medications mixed in for his heart condition. He has his bowl on the floor of the laundry room. It only takes them about 10 minutes to eat their bowls of food and we have to stand guard so that cat#1 does not jump up in the laundry room and shove another cat out of his bowl. When the three cats are done eating, then we let the fourth cat out of the bathroom. This whole routine took about a week to perfect and for all of our cats to understand it and eat their bowl of food promptly.

If you have cats that have developed different food or medical needs, it can take some logistics, patience and training for both your family and your cats but it certainly can be done. Just remember to be firm (they know what the word “no” is) and consistent with the training and use positive reinforcement (“good kitty”) to help your cats understand the new “herd management program”!



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