I love to read and to talk about books. I review many of the books I read. I do not accept any author/publisher submissions for reviews. I do not read or review ARCs. I do not enter any giveaways or contests. I obtain the books I review by purchasing them at the same price they are offered to the general public at the time of purchase. My reviews are intended for the use of my fellow readers. They are not advertising or promotion. They are not beta reads or constructive criticism or editing or advice to the author. My only obligation to the author is to pay the price charged for the book at the time of purchase. My reviews are sometimes critical and I will not stop posting critical reviews just to spare delicate authors' feelings. I am happy to make new friends, but friend requests from authors or promoters who have few or no books (and/or friends) in common with me and write or promote categories I do not read (especially new adult) will be ignored. I used to read more self-published books. After recent meltdowns by self-published authors, I now only read self-published authors I've previously read or who have been recommended to me by fellow readers I trust. I also used to read young adult/new adult books but rarely do so now.
I have 2 cats: Ti, who is overweight (19 lbs.!!!) and put on 3 lbs. over the past year and Loki, who is a little underweight (10.5 lbs.) and lost 2 lbs. over the past year. Ti is a big bully, though I understand from his point of view he is just taking care of himself and dealing with whatever issues he had when he joined our family as best he can. I take full responsibility for both of their weight problems. I’ve been trying to find a solution for a couple of years. We have gotten to the point where I believe Ti has told Loki that he can only eat canned food and only a portion of that. Loki seems frightened of the kibble bowls I put out for them.
I’ve googled and researched and talked to fellow cat owners and vets and over and over people tell me to separate them when they are eating. Unfortunately with this pair, that doesn’t work. Loki will not eat unless Ti is in the room with him. I’ve tried separating them with their food dishes for hours several times and Loki sits by the door the entire time, pining for Ti. I think he has Stockholm Syndrome. My supervision of mealtime helps, but it is only a partial solution. Ti is still able to intimidate Loki and push him away from the food and once intimidated, Loki will refuse to eat at all.
But I think I have finally found a solution:
Our new MeowSpace was delivered last night. I partially assembled it, leaving off the top and for part of the evening leaving off the front panel. It was very easy to assemble. It was also fairly easy to install the batteries and program the door to only recognize Loki’s microchip. After both cats had a chance to explore for a while, I put the front panel on, threw a few of Loki’s favorite treats in and added a catnip toy. Since the door is taped open, the lock makes a clicking noise periodically. I was a little worried Loki might be afraid of the noise but instead he is intrigued by it. Ti was the first to enter but he is so darned fat he only got halfway in, realized this was not for him and came back out. This was good. Both cats are supposed to be able to explore the box at first and it gave Loki a demonstration of how to go through the door. A lot of examining the outside and sniffing the sides where the treats were happened over the course of the evening.
I was willing to give Loki a few days before I started worrying, but I didn’t need to. When I was shutting out the lights and getting ready for bed, I peeked in the den from the kitchen and witnessed Loki entering the MeowSpace on his own through the door. Victory! He did it again this morning when I put a bowl of kibble in there. I think he even ate a little of the previously-forbidden-by-Ti kibble. It probably helped a lot that he’s a big fan of boxes and climbs in every cardboard box that comes in our home. I still have to train him to go through the closed door, but we have time before I need to do that. As long as Ti is not trying to go in, I think I can leave the door taped open for a bit longer and let Loki get really used to his new space before switching to a closed, locked door that Loki has to push open.
I am so relieved. Now I can quit fretting and get back to studying and reading. I have no relationship to this company, other than being a satisfied customer. I’m not an investor, I don’t work for the company and I don’t know any of the people who do. I know these things are pretty expensive and probably not needed for most multi-cat homes. I am passing this along because I feel there are probably other folks out there like me who are close to the breaking point and desperate for a solution that does not involve rehoming one of the cats. I am cautiously optimistic that the MeowSpace is that solution. I’ll post an update after we’ve had it a while and give you an honest opinion on whether or not it is still working.