As much as cartoons and pop culture want to prove otherwise, raising a dog and cat together in the same home isn’t that hard. And if you make sure to introduce the animals to each other properly, it could even kick off a very cute and long-lasting friendship.
With that said, that doesn’t mean that there aren’t complications that come with raising a dog and cat together. One of the biggest troubles pet owners run into when raising dogs and cats is finding their dog licking their cat’s food bowl.
While the occasional taste of cat food isn’t bad for your dog, keep in mind that cat food is very different from dog food. So, if you want to keep your dog healthy and strong, it’s best to feed them dog food that supplies them with their nutritional needs.
Still, if you want your dog to stop licking your cat’s bowl and scouring for leftovers, there are a couple of things you can do, which we’ll get into in this article. If you want more information on why too much cat food is bad for your dog, click here to read an in-depth guide from Spot & Tango.
So, if you’re trying to figure out a better feeding setup for your pets, you’ve come to the right place.
Why Does My Dog Lick My Cat’s Bowl?
Cat food is very interesting and exciting for dogs. It has a different aroma and taste, which could be just what they’re looking for. For example, if your dog isn’t too hot about their current dog food and they smell a new option close to them, they will likely head over to that new food and start eating it.
Additionally, cat food is more flavorful than dog food. This is because the ingredients used in cat food are designed to better fit a cat’s needs. And this means that it has to have a stronger flavor, which dogs are very attracted to.
Is Cat Food Safe For Dogs?
In small amounts, cat food is harmless for your dog. While it does have a higher fat content than regular dog food, cat food doesn’t pose dangers for your dog if they only eat the leftovers in your cat’s bowl.
However, if they eat a lot of cat food over an extended period of time, they could develop obesity, pancreatitis, and other serious issues like kidney problems. To avoid this, make sure your dog doesn’t eat too much cat food and if you find your dog licking your cat’s bowl, train them to not do that.
How To Prevent Your Dog From Eating From Your Cat’s Bowl
There are many ways to prevent your dog from licking the cat’s bowl. And since every dog is different, what may work for one pet owner may not work for you. That’s why we’ve included a variety of different methods that you can try out with your pets.
Change Their Dog Food
The main reason dogs like eating cat food is that it tastes better than their regular food. So, if you find your dog licking your cat’s bowl a bit too much for your liking, then you might want to consider changing their food.
Just like humans, dogs have very specific tastes, and some of them can also be picky eaters. So, if you’ve just adopted a dog, you may want to experiment with different food brands and types until you find the one that they love. That way, your dog will be less interested in licking your cat’s bowl.
Another solution is to train your dog to keep away. Dog training is hard, but it’s necessary for any dog owner. So, if you want your dog to stay away from your cat’s food, you may have to set aside an hour or two every day to train them to avoid it. It may be hard, but it’s very effective and can improve your dog’s discipline.
Install A Gate
If you really have a hard time getting your dog to stop licking your cat’s bowl, you can also install a gate in the feeding area. That way, there’s a definite area for your dog to eat and a definite area for your cat to eat, which reduces the chances of your dog going near your cat’s territory and stealing their food.
Stick To A Feeding Schedule
Lastly, if your cat is on a free-feeding schedule, this gives your dog more opportunity to lick its bowl.
So if you keep your cat on a strict feeding schedule, then there’s a lesser chance of leftovers in their bowl.
If you’re raising a cat and dog together, feeding time can be complicated. You don’t want your dog to eat too much cat food as that can lead to a wide range of problems, but dogs are curious animals and often find themselves eating things they shouldn’t.
Therefore, with these different techniques, you might find it easier than expected to get your dog to stop licking the cat’s bowl.