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Do your cats eat their meals too greedily, like they fear that someone is going to take the food away? This is a common problem for cat owners. It comes from a natural instinct to eat their food before a predator or some other danger arrives, but it can cause a number of problems. First of all, they might not chew the food well enough, which increases the risk of choking. It can also cause bloating and vomiting. But how do you stop your cats from doing this?
In a Hurry? Here’s Our Top Picks:
- Catit Senses 2.0 Food Tree Feeder – Top Choice!
- Northmate Interactive Cat Feeder
- PetSafe Healthy Pet Simply Feed Automatic Feeder
- Trixie Activity Center
- Catit Senses 2.0 Digger for Cats
How To Slow Down Cat Eating Too Fast?
If you don’t know how to get your cat to eat slower, the answer is by buying a cat slow feeder. Slow down cat feeders are specifically designed to help your pet eat slower. One type of cat slow feeders are electronic automatic feeders. They use modern technology to dispense the food slowly, and thus prevent your pet from gorging on their food. A slow feeder can also take the shape of a specially designed slow feed cat bowl or an interactive feeder which most often has some kind of obstacle that makes your pet eat slower.
Best Cat Slow Feeder Models
There are many types of slow feeders on the market. They come in a variety of sizes and designs, and each brand believes that their feeder is the best solution. The right choice for your cat will depend on its size, eating style, temperament, and other unique characteristics. When you take all of those factors into account, you will realize that choosing the right slow feeder for your cat isn’t an easy task at all. In an attempt to help you, I have put together this list of top 5 cat slow feeders, with pros and cons of each.
Catit Senses 2.0 Food Tree
When it comes to creative solutions for cat bowls to slow down eating, Catit is a great brand to choose. I’m personally a big fan of their products, because they design products specifically for cats, and all of their feeders are really unique and fun.
The Catit Senses Food Tree is an interactive feeder, a food maze that aims to awaken your cat’s natural hunting instincts and encourage eating at a healthy pace by making the cat really work for the food. To get to the food inside, the cats need to move it from the top to the bottom of the tree by pawing at the openings at the sides. Not only does this slow down eating, it will be loads of fun for you cat and provide much needed stimulation for indoor cats. It has three difficulty settings, so you can adjust it according to your cat’s progress. It shouldn’t be so hard that they give up, nor so easy that they lose interest. The pet feeder can be disassembled and cleaned by hand.
This cat slow feeder is actually the second version of a product that used to be called Catit Food Maze. Catit Food Maze had a wider opening at the top and a narrower base. This was problematic because cats could knock the tree down, or stick their head through the opening. The Food Tree solves these problems, and it’s great to see Catit listen to their customers’ feedback and striving to improve their products. But as we all know, cats can be really smart and stubborn, so some cats will still find a way to cheat or spill the food all over your floor.
- It stimulates your cat physically and mentally.
- This new and improved version is hard to knock over and cheat.
- Some cats will still find a way to cheat.
The Company of Animals – Northmate Interactive Cat Feeder
This is another interactive cat feeder that’s meant to awaken your cat’s natural hunting instincts. It is a special cat food bowl for slow eating. It consists of a purple flat surface with a lot of smooth rounded spikes on top, which are supposed to mimic blades of grass, and inspire your cat to forage and search for food. The spikes are ergonomically designed to provide the maximum challenge for even the most determined cats. It comes in two sizes, so it can be used in households with cats of all sizes, and even some smaller dogs.
To use the feeder, you need to scatter the desired amount of food in between the spikes and your cat will have to push or grab the food to get to it. This will significantly slow down your cat’s eating time. It will also provide mental and physical stimulation, and it’s perfect for indoor cats that never get the opportunity to play in real grass. But that doesn’t mean outdoor cats can’t benefit from it, because the feeder can also be used outdoors. Of course, the feeder isn’t meant to be used with wet food, as it would just cause a huge mess.
The pet feeder is made of hard plastic so it’s extremely durable. The plastic is phthalates-free, so you don’t have to worry it will harm your cat’s health. The feeder is also dishwasher safe, which makes cleanup quick and easy. The only downside of this feeder is that your cats can easily drag it across the floor. It would be better if it had rubber on the bottom.
- It gives indoor cats the opportunity to experience foraging for food in the grass.
- It’s dishwasher safe.
- It slides across the floor.
PetSafe Healthy Pet Simply Feed 12-Meal Automatic Pet Feeder
The next cat food dish to slow down eating on my list is an automatic electronic feeder made by PetSafe, a big name in the pet products industry. This feeder will help you slow down your cat’s eating with its Slow Feed mode, which dispenses food slowly over a 15 minutes period. When you combine this with the ability to customize meal sizes from 1/8 cups to 4 cups, you get a really great option for controlling your cat’s weight.
While this automatic cat feeder isn’t as stimulating as interactive feeders, it’s great because you can use it to schedule up to 12 meals, so that your cat will be fed even when you’re not home.
If you want to feed your pet outside the scheduled feeding times, just use the Immediate Feed Mode, which allows you to dispense the next scheduled meal instantly. The feeder also comes with two preset feeding options to make setup easier for you. Still, it definitely does require some setup and fiddling with technology, unlike interactive feeders.
The feeder is made of BPA-free plastic, and the slow feed cat bowl is stainless steel. Both of these materials are good for your cat’s health. The bowl can be removed and washed in the dishwasher for a quick and easy cleanup. The product uses 4 D alkaline batteries, which are not included, and the power adapter is sold separately.
- It’s great for controlling your cat’s weight.
- It’s easy to clean.
- The power adapter is sold separately.
- It isn’t as simple or stimulating as interactive feeders.
Trixie 5-in-1 Activity Center
Now this cat feeder is really creative, and it’s the only one on this list that has a variety of fun activities for your cat. It basically consists of five mini games that make your cat work for its food and therefore eat more slowly.
The first one is called Globe, and it resembles a fish bowl and requires cats to scoop out treats with their paw. To do this, you cat will have to rely on its smell and hearing. The second one is Peg, which allows your cat see the treat from a distance and figure out a strategy to get to it. The third one is Alley, and it makes your pet paw at the treats to get to them. The fourth one is Tongue, and it’s made for wet food, because it prevents your cat from using its paws. Last but not least, there’s Tunnel that’s meant to resemble a mouse hole and invite your cat to explore for treats and toys hidden inside. These five games are designed to channel your cat’s curiosity and stimulate each of the five senses.
The feeder is also good for cats of varying intelligence (even though we all like to believe our cats are the smartest). You can put food into all 5 games so that your cat can choose the one it likes the most. The feeder also comes with an instructional booklet that contains tips and tricks to help you get the most out of this product. It’s great that this cat feeder doesn’t slide all across the floor, because it has rubber on each corner of the bottom side. Some parts of the feeder are removable and dishwasher safe, such as the globes.
- It’s really creative, and it contains five fun games in only one product.
- It can even be used with wet food.
- Larger paws won’t fit into some of the games.
Catit Senses 2.0 Digger
This is another interactive feeder that Catit has to offer. This one has multiple smaller tubes that you can fill with small portions of food. This is great because you can put a different kind of food or treat into every tube, which really engages your cat’s senses (hence the name) and encourages it to explore. It has includes 3 short, narrow tubes, and 2 long, wide tubes. You can change up the setup of the tubes to change difficulty, or just to keep it fresh for your cat. Just like the Catit Food Tree, Catit Digger encourages slow feeding and awakens natural hunting instincts.
The pet feeder has a round, sloped surface that collects stray kibble and prevents spillage on your floor. Just wipe the surface to quickly clean it by hand whenever it’s needed. You can take the tubes out and wash them by hand in no time. Unfortunately, they are not dishwasher safe. The feeder measures 14.6 x 14.6 x 3.3 inches, and it’s quite sturdy and stable. The only problem is that the more aggressive, rougher cats will be able to take the tubes out with their paws.
Catit Senses 2.0 products were specifically designed to be mixed and matched with each other, so if you buy other products in this line, you can create a whole playing environment for your cat that can be changed up frequently. This is a nice touch, but it’s not a must, as each cat feeder also works really well on its own.
Pros: The surface prevents mess on your floor; the difficulty of the game can be changed up.
Cons: It’s not dishwasher safe; some cats can take the tubes out.
Conclusion: Best Slow Feeder For Cats
As the slow feeders go, I would recommend the PetSafe Healthy Pet Automatic Pet Feeder because it is an automatic pet feeder you can use as a slow feeder, but also as a regular feeder for your cat. If you don’t need a slow feeder, but you are interested in feeders for wet food, check out our post about wet food feeders.