My house-guest, Neville, is doing much better with regard to eating. I don’t think it was just a matter of him being in a new environment. His foster-guardian says that he is a very picky eater. But I tried something new.
While he was on my lap - he is an affectionate fellow - I offered him a small dish of food. He ate that, so I expanded the amount and, eventually, moved the dish to a spot near by on the couch. I continued to pet him as he ate. This action diminished until I was just sitting with him during his meals. Now I can leave him alone and he eats most of what he is given. When he seems reluctant, I talk to him and pet him.
Neville wants to eat, and this morning, when I brought him food, he was clearly waiting for his sustenance, and tucked into it right away, which is a welcome change from his first day or two. Last evening, he finished off almost two tins of Fancy Feast between five o’clock and ten-thirty. I left him some food when I departed for work this morning.
The solution to his problem may simply be a matter of getting him started on his meals, or it may be a matter of placement; putting the bowl on the floor gets the contents ignored. Putting it on the couch generates more interest. Certainly, petting him during the meal helps a great deal.
Neville is a grand little cat, and I would have no difficulty welcoming him as a permanent resident if he had no where else to go. But my resources, in both time and money, are stretched right now. When Parker was with me, I wasn’t spending all the time I wanted with them that the cats wanted; I still am not, but I am doing better. Even with integration, I think Neville would need a great deal of immediate companionship; in other words, he would probably be high-maintenance.
So he will have two more days with me, hopefully packing in the food he needs, and enjoying being petted on that smooth head and skinny body. As usual with my foster-cats, no matter how short a time they stay, I will miss him when he goes.