How to keep dogs away from cat food and litter?
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Thread: How to keep dogs away from cat food and litter?

  1. #1
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    How to keep dogs away from cat food and litter?

    Sorry if this is a bit of a long post, but I want to give as much info as I can. Please let me know if you have any questions!

    So I live in a house with two dogs and two cats. The cats are both around 10 years old, one still is very athletic and acts much younger than she is, but the other is starting to get arthritis and has problems jumping. One dog is a full size dachshund and the other is a mini dachshund, both are 3.

    I live in a two story house and currently we have a baby gate on our stairs that blocks the dogs from getting upstairs where the cat food and one cat box are at. There is a second cat box downstairs and is taller with a lid so that the dogs can't get in it. The older cat has issues using a box with a lid like this, so the box upstairs is open. This was working to keep the dogs away, but the issue is that one cat is now having issues getting over the baby gate and we want to give her access to the upstairs when no one is home. The obvious solution is to get rid of the baby gate.

    So, assuming we remove the baby gate, how can we keep dogs out of a cat box and out of the cat's food? If we get a table that is low, the dogs can easily jump up on it (they won't if we are watching, but they will when we are gone), and if we get a table too high the cat will have issues jumping on it.

    So, what choices are there to help this cat while keeping the dogs at bay?

    Please help!!

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  3. #2
    Senior Member momtolabs's Avatar
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    Re: How to keep dogs away from cat food and litter?

    Do you free feed your cats? I wouldn't and don't. I have one dog that if he eats the cat food gets sick the other one would eat it all and get sick from to much of it! Plus I want to know how much my cats are eating to see if anything is irregular with them.

    Can you get this litter box for your older cat?

    http://www.amazon.com/Booda-Dome-Cle.../dp/B0002DH8L4

    Are the dogs crate trained? If so crate them while you are gone. While you are home teach them what rooms upstairs they can go into and which ones they can't( assuming the everything is in a room and not in a hallway).


    Bentley- 4 yellow lab
    Mia-1 ACD/lab mix
    Tank-9 year old black lab

  4. #3
    Senior Member PatchworkRobot's Avatar
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    Re: How to keep dogs away from cat food and litter?

    Said this in another thread - baby gates.

    Also, I second not free feeding.

  5. #4
    Member pawsplus's Avatar
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    Re: How to keep dogs away from cat food and litter?

    Re: food--I agree w/ those who have said STOP FREE FEEDING!! Dry food is VERY bad for cats (see here: http://www.catinfo.org) and so is free-feeding of any food. Feed 2 meals a day and separate the cats and dogs for meals. My 4 cats all eat in separate rooms; my 3 dogs are all crated separately for meals. Works great.

    Re: litterbox, I have several time-tested ideas.

    First, this awesome baby gate which is extra tall w/ a kitty door in the bottom. I have one and love it!

    http://www.drsfostersmith.com/produc...1&pcatid=12521

    Second, put your box in a closet. Here is mine. It is a large Biddy Cat box in the closet (litter is in bin to the left). The door is rigged to close only so far and to open only so far, so cats can fit in but dogs cannot (this works only if you don't have toy dogs--ditto the gate above!). You can see the braided cord I use to keep it from being opened farther than cat-width.



    Third, make a BIG covered box (I'm not a fan of covered boxes b/c commercial ones are too small, but this one works great and even my "don't like covered boxes" kitty uses it):



    Elizabeth
    Rachel, Sam, and Daniel


  6. #5
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    Re: How to keep dogs away from cat food and litter?

    Thanks all for the responses. Stopping free feeding is an obvious solution that I'm not sure why I didn't even think of. I will start feeding that cats at the same time as I do the dogs (though in a different place!) and see how that works. I'm sure it will be an adjustment, but it is a great idea. That completely solves that issue, so thank you for that!

    To PatchworkRobot and pawsplus:

    The baby gate idea won't work because the dogs are basically the same size as our cats (one dog is actually smaller). Like I said in my initial post, we currently do have a baby gate that blocks the dogs from being able to get to the upstairs area. It is a gate that is attached to the wall with a door on it so you can open and pass through. It does work, but the issue is that the older cat can't jump over it. We attempted to raise it up a few inches but once it was high enough that the cats could fit under, so could the smaller dog. The idea about the gate with a cat door was a great idea, but sadly the dog would still be able to get through it. This sadly applies to pretty much anything with the smallest dog, anywhere the cats can fit, so can she.

    The one thing that the dogs can't do, however, is jump very well (since they are dachshund). My next thought was to find a way to raise the litter box so that the cats could get to it, but the dogs wouldn't. Not sure how that would work though, or if the height would deter the cats from using it.

    Also to pawsplus-

    I love the idea of cutting a hole in the side of a container like that and using it as a covered box! My cats also hate commercial covered boxes, and that is a great idea. Wouldn't keep the dog out, but it still looks much less unsightly than a cat box!

  7. #6
    Member pawsplus's Avatar
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    Re: How to keep dogs away from cat food and litter?

    Yeah--it's a whole other issue if your dog is small! I avoid that by never going under 27# in dogs LOL.
    Elizabeth
    Rachel, Sam, and Daniel


  8. #7
    Senior Member bgmacaw's Avatar
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    Re: How to keep dogs away from cat food and litter?

    We have a problem like yours, mainly with the litter boxes. Food hasn't been a problem except for the cats trying to get the dog's food. The dog doesn't like the special diet food the cats are on. Unfortunately, our dog, a Chi mix, has developed a taste for kitty krunchies left in the litter box.

    We have two older cats and one of them is a very large Maine Coon who weighs in at around 24 pounds (he's a bit on the chunky side). He's never been much of a jumper and is even less so now at about 10 years. The other older cat is also part Maine Coon and is about 15lbs. The other one is a regular sized cat and the last one is the Persian kitten seen in my avatar.

    Since the dog is only bigger than the Persian, this leaves out some solutions that would block a big dog. Gates and fences block the big cat and he needs a XXXL litter box anyway. We also have 4 boxes, one for each cat, and use recycled paper litter since it prevents rear end mats. While we can block the dog's access some of the time (crate, 'leave it' etc.), she does sneak by and grab a 'snack' from time to time.

    We haven't found a solution yet that would allow our oversized cats easy access to the litter boxes while keeping the dog away.

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