There are 4 cats that I'm taking care of at my garden, and when it's time to eat, I take the food and spread it in a line so that all 4 of them can easily eat without distraction from the others. But most of the times (like 9 out of 10), all 4 of them will go to the end of the line of the food and try to eat. Of course, because they are 4, they cannot all eat at the same spot and I have to pick them up and place them along the line.

Is there any reason they do this?

  • Is it always the same end?
    – Just Do It
    Feb 23, 2016 at 19:10
  • Yes, they all go to the same end Feb 23, 2016 at 20:12
  • The food is always better in domeone else's bowl? Seriously, I'd just let them work this out for themselves; it's not as if they'll have any trouble finding the other bowls when they're done trying to boss each other around.
    – keshlam
    Feb 24, 2016 at 5:54
  • It's the same food for all of them Feb 24, 2016 at 9:17

1 Answer 1


Cats tend to be dominate over certain items. The tend not to be "alpha cats" over everything. Some cats are dominate only over the litter box. Some are dominant over their place they sleep during the day, while some are dominant over food.

Since outside cats are at a disadvantage when it comes to food, most pick up the trait of "dominance over food" in order to survive.

Although, in your garden, there's plenty of food for all, a cat eating out of one dish means that food will not be available to the other cats. Their outside survival instinct, tells them to eat the food the other cat is eating before it's gone.

I think with time, the cats can be conditioned to understand that food will be available to them, without fighting for it. To do this, you must be consistent with the time you feed them...and I mean very consistent. I feed my inside cats wet food each night at 8:30 pm. If I am five minutes late, one of my cats comes to get me and won't stop meowing until I feed them. After all, I'm the one that's late. They will know.

Best wishes with your garden kitties, and thank you for caring for them!

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