Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Catching Sothlice with his Paw in the PetSafe Fishbowl

Sothlice has been feeling a little neglected this summer. Rye's been having regular playdates with her friends and Barley's been getting some solo adventures, but Soth hasn't had anything special lately. He expressed his need for excitement when he escaped from our yard a couple weeks ago and I spent 30 minutes searching for him before I found him in our neighbor's yard. 

Thankfully, our friends at Chewy.com gave us the chance to try out the PetSafe Fishbowl Cat Feeder Toy. The fishbowl is a bowl with a weighted bottom and a rim around the edge. The cat needs to reach in and "fish" for pieces of kibble. I use puzzle feeders with the girls when they've been cooped up too much and need a little extra enrichment, so I thought Soth should have a chance for some extra enrichment, too.

The fishbowl arrived with Rye's Nerf toy, so Rye thought it was definitely for her. Once I wrestled it away from her, though, I was excited to fill it up and see what Soth thought.

The fishbowl comes in an easy to open package--but not so easy that Rye could figure it out.

I put some of Soth's kibbles inside the fishbowl and set it on the table so his nosy sisters wouldn't bother him. He sniffed at it and then walked away.


The fishbowl came with some training instructions and it suggested letting the cat get used to the fishbowl by placing food around it. We've used similar training techniques with the girls, so I thought if I put some kibbles on the rim, maybe Soth would grab those and then want to investigate the kibbles inside the bowl.


I thought wrong. 


The instructions also suggested setting the fishbowl in the cat's regular bowl. When Barley and I left for agility, I decided to try that. By the time we'd gotten home, the fishbowl had been knocked off Soth's feeding table and was upside down on the kitchen floor with the kibbles trapped beneath it. I guess my hangry guy was not amused at having to work for his dinner.

Eventually, Soth got the hang of the fishbowl and occasionally I'd hear the sound of his paw rooting around in the fishbowl. As soon as I got the camera out, though, he'd stop. I had to be extra sneaky to get some footage of his using the fishbowl. After several days of trying, I was doing dishes and heard Soth fishing for kibbles. I grabbed the phone and zoomed in, so the video quality isn't great, but you can't be picky when your subject is so elusive. 

video

Since then, I've filled the fishbowl with Soth's kibbles and he's emptied it--but never when I'm watching. I can't decide if Soth actually likes the fishbowl or if he's just using it because he wants food. 

Here are some things that I like about the fishbowl, though: 
  • It stands up to the chaos of our house. Even after its 3-ft+  drop from the top of Soth's feeding table, there isn't a single crack in it. Rye has also picked it up a few times and there are a few discolored spots where she left little teeth marks in the rim, but nothing terrible.
  • It makes Soth work for food. Weight has always been a struggle for Soth. He lives to eat. He gets destructive when he sees his bowl is empty and I don't fill it up quickly enough. This slows him down a bit so that we don't have to argue about whether he really needs more food and so I don't have to explain to him that I cannot reward him for knocking a jar of peanut butter off the counter by refilling his bowl. 
Sometimes I forget that Soth could use some enrichment in his life, too, especially since Rye requires so much attention right now. Soth might not be happy that we tried out the Fishbowl Cat Feeder toy, but I think it's a great product that makes mealtime a little more interactive than just filling up the bowl and walking away.

Disclaimer: We were sent one PetSafe Fishbowl Cat Feeder from Chewy.com in exchange for our honest opinion as part of the #ChewyInfluencer program. 




12 comments:

  1. I've read the it's really important for cats to work for their food since they are traditionally hunters more than scavengers. But I guess after thousands of years of domestication, some kitties prefer to be served. :)

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    1. I've read that, too, but I really can't blame him--I don't like to work for my food, either, which is why I never order wings ;)

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  2. We know cat bro Bert is not amused by food puzzles. He eats from a slow feeder every meal, but he will do anything for his food. Soth is probably the same way.

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    1. Soth definitely isn't amused by anything that keeps him from getting to his food immediately. Soth eats mostly wet food, so he doesn't usually have to worry about working too hard to get it, but this seemed like a good way to make his kibble last him a little longer :)

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  3. Hahaha, silly Bun. Glad he got a surprise in the mail, too, though! :)

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    1. Rye was very confused about why she couldn't have both things! Soth might have preferred it if Rye had had to eat out of the fishbowl, too!

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  4. That's a good idea! We made a homemade toy for Sam once that involved her having to fish the treats out...it also ended up on the floor at one point!
    Jan, Wag 'n Woof Pets

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    1. That's fantastic! I'd never thought of making one for Soth before. I did get him a little treat ball once and Barley stole it. This one is nice since it doesn't actually roll and I can just set it up with his bowls to keep it away from his sisters.

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  5. What a great idea. I didn't know they made puzzles for cats too. My daughter could definitely use this, because her cat is Fat Freddie. ;-)

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    1. Soth has a couple little wobbly treat dispensers, but they're much small, so he just bats them to get the treats out of a hole instead of fishing and they're lighter weight and not as durable as this one. I think this one is fantastic!

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