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Whisker Fatigue

Cat owners know that their pets can be finicky eaters, and we even make jokes about cats rejecting expensive gushy noms out of a desire to exasperate us. It might not be the food at all that's causing the problem. It might be the bowl they eat from. If a cat's whiskers are not compatible with the dish, it might suffer from sensory overload that makes eating unpleasant, and possibly not worth the effort. This is called whisker fatigue.

Whisker fatigue is a fairly new diagnosis, one that many (but not all) veterinarians take seriously. When cats have to stick their faces into deep bowls and their whiskers rub up against the sides, the experience can be stressful, prompting them to paw the food onto the floor, fight with other cats or grow apprehensive at mealtimes.

“I think it’s just one of those things where people say, ‘Oh, cats are just finicky eaters,’ and everyone thinks it’s a joke,” said Ms. Gardner, a 51-year-old fiction writer and blogger in Langhorne, Pa. “After reading some articles about this, I was like, maybe this isn’t a joke after all.”

The solution to whisker fatigue is a wider, flatter food dish. Pet companies sell "whisker friendly" dishes just for that purpose, but usually a regular plate works just as well. Read more about whisker Fatigue at the New York Times. -via Nag on the Lake

(Image credit: Carsondelake)

Love cute animals? View more at Lifestyles of the Cute and Cuddly blog

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I laughed at myself for using fine china saucers to feed the cats, but who uses saucers under their coffee cups outside of holiday feasts? I have a service for twenty, so why not use them?
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