How to Keep Dogs Out of Cat Food (+Can a Dog Eat Cat Food?)

Wondering how to keep your dog out of cat food, or if a sneaky snack could harm them? It’s a common issue for those of you out there who have both dogs and cats, but the difference in their dietary needs means what’s good for one might not be good for the other, and we’ll explain why.

We’ll teach you how to keep your dog away from cat food and what to do if your dog has eaten cat food already. Finally, we’ll answer other important questions: Can a dog eat cat food without any health issues, and what are the risks involved with dogs eating either dry or canned cat food? Keep reading!

How to Keep Dogs Out of Cat Food

How to Keep Dogs Out of Cat Food

Keeping dogs out of cat food is a common concern for pet owners who share their home with both dogs and cats. Dog’s interest in cat food is natural due to its higher protein and fat content, which can be appealing.

However, your dog eating cat food can lead to nutritional imbalances and digestive issues. Taking steps to prevent your dog from accessing cat food is important for the health and well-being of both your pets.

What Should I Do if My Dog Eats Cat Food?

If your dog eats cat food, watch them closely for any signs of digestive upset, such as vomiting or diarrhea. While a small amount of cat food might not harm your dog, regular consumption can lead to nutritional imbalances.

If your dog shows any signs of illness or discomfort, contact your veterinarian immediately. In the meantime, ensure your dog has access to fresh water and returns to a dog-appropriate diet.

Where to Put Cat Food When You Have a Dog

To prevent your dog from accessing cat food, consider placing the cat food in areas inaccessible to your dog. Options include:

  • Elevating the cat’s food bowl on a counter or shelf that only your cat can reach.
  • Using a baby gate to restrict access to the room where the cat’s food is kept.

How to Keep Dog Away From Cat Food

  • Train the ‘leave it’ command. Start with a treat in your hand and let your dog sniff it, then close your hand around the treat. Say ‘leave it.’ Wait until your dog stops sniffing and nibbling at your hand. As soon as they back away, praise them and give them the treat. Practice regularly, increasing the difficulty gradually by placing the treat on the ground and covering it with your hand.
  • Create a feeding schedule where both pets are fed at the same time but in separate areas to minimize the dog’s interest in the cat’s food.
  • Ensure your dog is receiving a balanced diet to reduce their temptation to seek out the cat’s food.

Keeping your dog away from cat food requires a combination of strategic placement of the cat’s food, training, and ensuring that your dog’s dietary needs are met. These steps will help, but it’s important to remember that any underlying behavioral issues (resource guarding, dominance, etc.) that were contributing to this will still be present.

And until you address those, any positive changes you see will only be temporary.

“Well, how do I make these changes last?”

By getting your dog to truly choose to follow your direction, that’s how. I tried many times to write out how you can do that before deciding it made more sense to just link you to the free video series that explains it better than I’d ever be able to.

The series is by a man named Dan who is one of the world’s leading dog obedience trainers. In it, he teaches you how to put an end to things like your dog eating cat food and all other misbehavior using his fast and easy-to-follow methods.

In the first video, Dan will reveal to you why the two most common methods of dog training only doom you to failure. You can watch the video now by clicking here. Follow the proven system he’ll show you in his series and you’ll never have to spend another second worrying about your dog eating your cat’s food ever again!

Can a Dog Eat Cat Food?

How to Keep Dog Away From Cat Food

While a dog might find cat food appealing due to its high protein and fat content, it is not recommended for dogs to eat cat food regularly. Cat food is specifically formulated to meet the nutritional needs of cats, which are significantly different from those of dogs. Occasional consumption of cat food may not harm a dog, but regular feeding can lead to nutritional imbalances and health issues.

Can a Dog Die From Eating Cat Food?

Occasional ingestion of cat food is unlikely to be fatal for dogs, but regular consumption can lead to serious health issues. Cat food lacks certain nutrients dogs require and contains others in excess, which can lead to obesity, pancreatitis, and nutritional deficiencies over time.

If a dog eats cat food in large quantities or shows signs of illness after consuming cat food, immediate veterinary care is necessary. Learn how to keep your dog away from cat food by going back to the first section now.

Is Can Cat Food Bad for Dogs?

Canned cat food, while tempting to dogs because of its strong smell and taste, is not suitable for them. Its high protein and fat levels are designed for cats’ specific dietary needs and can be too rich for dogs, potentially leading to digestive upset and obesity.

Feeding dogs canned cat food regularly can also result in nutritional imbalances.

Will Dry Cat Food Hurt Dogs?

While an occasional nibble of dry cat food may not hurt a dog, consistent consumption is discouraged. Dry cat food lacks certain essential nutrients dogs need and can contribute to an unbalanced diet, leading to long-term health problems. It’s important to feed dogs a diet specifically formulated for their nutritional requirements to ensure their health and well-being.

In conclusion, while our pups may safely consume small amounts of cat food on rare occasions, it’s important to keep cat food away from dogs and ensure that they’re fed a balanced diet designed for their specific nutritional needs.

If your dog eats cat food frequently or in large amounts, consulting with a veterinarian is recommended to address any potential health issues and dietary adjustments.

You’re probably ready to begin now that you have all of your questions about your dog eating your cat’s food answered, so I’ll let you get started on things. Good luck, and thanks for taking a look at our article “How to Keep Dogs Out of Cat Food (+Can a Dog Eat Cat Food?)”.

The Author

KB Williams

KB Williams

Hey there! I'm a dog behavior expert and lover of travel. Since 2016, I've been sharing my knowledge of dog training and behavior while exploring the Pacific Northwest with my two rescues.