Monday, October 27, 2008

Lewis and dinnertime

Lewis must have been born starving. And for some reason, he's afraid he'll never get another meal.

I don't get it! It's not like I have ever "forgotten" to feed him. But starting about an hour before his mealtime, he cries incessantly for his food. I try not to ever give in so as not to encourage the behavior. It doesn't help that my computer is right next to his dinner bowl. Today I was looking online for an unlocked phone (since I dropped my cell phone in water and now it doesn't work), and he continually meowed pathetically and climbed all over the desk and the chair. He acted all cuddly - rubbing against me, putting his paws on my chest and rubbing his face on my nose or chin - but it didn't work. I remained steadfast about the 5:00 feeding time.

I've thought of a few things. One is to set an alarm and always feed him when the alarm goes off. That way, he won't think that his crying is getting him fed. Or perhaps he'll think that his crying will make the alarm go off faster. I don't know, but it's probably worth a try.

One thing I've also done is get out the spray bottle. We fill a bottle with water and spray the cats when they get on things we don't allow - the counters, the dining room table, and the back of the couches. This time I sprayed him when he meowed. He ran away, and stayed quiet. My husband is concerned that this method is going to confuse him - that Lewis will think I'm punishing him for being near me, and not for crying.

Does anyone have ideas? Is there a way I can communicate to Lewis that I WILL feed him today, and he doesn't have to remind me for an hour straight? Do you think the spray bottle is a good idea, or do you think it just will confuse him?

1 comment:

Beckie said...

If you only use the spray bottle for undesireable behavior, I don't think it should confuse him. I don't know about the alarm thing, I don't quite understand how it would work. I don't think it would hurt to try it though. We have a dog with the same issues. we always feed her at 6PM, but starting at 5:15-5:30 she starts her supper routine, begging, barking, dancing in circles, asking to go out then immediately asking to come in again. If you find something that works keep us posted. I may want to try it with our dog.