Doc & Phoebe’s Indoor Hunting Feeder review
by Anita Kelsey London’s leading cat behaviourist
At an awards ceremony in July 2017 International Cat Care awarded Doc & Phoebe with the prestigious Cat Friendly Award after recognising their new product, the indoor hunting feeder, as a great way forward for our cat’s eating habits.
I was intrigued and even more so when asked to review the product and give my feedback.
Initially I was a little hesitant to review the product because I strongly advocate a cat’s natural diet to be meat, being obligate carnivores and I also come from the school of thought, after continued research into dry biscuits and dental care, that a dry food diet does not clean teeth to prevent the build up of plaque in a way that would prevent dental issues (only a regular professional clean by a vet or home cleaning (good luck with that one!!!) keeps cat’s teeth in tip top condition).
However, our cats still love treats and some cats do like kibble, alongside their meat, and so I looked forward to receiving my batch of mice feeders to try on Kiki and Zaza below.
The idea behind Doc & Phoebe’s Indoor Hunting Feeder is to encourage our cats to hunt and forage for their food rather than the predictable large bowl of dry food left out all day for them to graze on. A feral cat would naturally eat small amounts of prey through-out the day and so 5 small meals/sessions a day is ideal for the domestic cat. For indoor cats this feeder is an excellent idea and perfect for healthy treats such as the frieze dried variety or small amounts of high quality kibble. It keeps indoor cats from getting bored, stimulates them to play and hunt and helps with keeping them on the move thus can aid with weight loss.
The actual bowl inside the material, designed to look like a mouse with ears and a tail, is easy to clean and has two main holes for the food to fall through, with a bit of batting from our cat’s paws! Doc & Phoebe’s Indoor Hunting Feeder comes with a kibble scoop to easily enable the human guardian to place the kibble inside. Frieze dried treats can just be popped in.
Cat’s pick up things very easily when it involves food and so Kiki and Zaza had no trouble working out that to get the treat inside they had to bat and roll the ‘mouse’. Here’s a video of them on their first try out.
Extra feeding skins can be bought in funky colours to make it fun for humans and cats and all easily machine or hand washable too.
Any product that is designed to tap into a cat’s natural behaviours gets my vote and I love the simple yet effective design which can be hidden around the home for your cats to hunt out without getting in anyone’s else’s way.
The Doc and Pheobe website is packed full of information regarding the idea behind the no bowl cat feeder and also lists a handy Frequently Asked Questions page.
All in all the Doc & Phoebe’s Indoor Hunting Feeder is a win win 5 star product.
I look forward to the wet meat version!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Anita Kelsey holds a first class honours degree in Feline Behaviour and Psychology (work based BA Hons) and runs a vet referral service dedicated strictly to the diagnosis and treatment of behaviour problems in cats. She is also a qualified cat groomer and specialises in grooming aggressive or phobic cats. Anita writes for Your Cat Magazine and is on their experts panel answering readers questions on cat grooming. She also advises on feline behaviour for the CFBA (Canine and Feline Behaviour) magazine as well as being a full member. Anita, a strong advocate of a vegan lifestyle, is based in Notting Hill, London but consults all over the UK as well as international requests. She lives with her husband, a music producer, and two Norwegian Forest cats, Kiki and Zaza.
Her debut booked, pictured left, is published by John Blake and is called Claws, Confessions Of A Cat Groomer.
Available from Amazon and all good book shops.