cat feeding bowls on a stand

What Is The Best Thing About Using Raised Cat Bowls?

Why Use Raised Cat Bowls?

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    Using a raised bowl means there is less pressure on the cat's joints and muscles. It can be difficult for senior cats to crouch down to floor level in order to reach food bowls which are placed on the floor. This is especially so if your cat has arthritis and it may be painful for him to reach his food.  If in pain, your senior cat may tend to eat and drink less and miss out on vital nutrients as a result.
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    Cat owners who have physical mobility issues, will find it considerably easier to pick up a bowl that is raised several inches from floor level.
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    For some breeds of cats, with flat faces, it can be difficult to access food from a bowl on the floor. Ideally bowls for these kitties will be wider and flatter than usual.

Checklist For Choosing A Raised Cat Bowl

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    The height of the box - The ideal height should be around 4 - 6 inches.  Our box is 4” high (see below), but it will depend on the size of your cat. Cats should still be eating in a semi crouch position.
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    How many cats do you have? More than one feeding platform may be required or if the platform has multiple bowls, more that one cat could share the same platform. 

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    What is the feeding platform made from? - Will it be easy to clean?  This is important. Practicality will win any day. Make sure that it will be easy to wipe down and that the bowls can be easily be removed for cleaning.
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    Can the raised feeding platform be knocked over or easily pushed? Make sure that the platform is not too lightweight, if your kitty is likely to push it around. Can it be easily knocked over by a toddler or a dog?

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    Check the depth of the bowls as this may almost negate the benefit gained from the height aspect.  Make sure that the bowls are not too deep. If kitty has to bend his head right into the bowl, the bowls may be too deep.
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    Are the bowls a standard size so that they can  be replaced if or when the need arises?

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    As mentioned earlier, if your kitty has a flat face, ensure that the raised cat bowls are reasonably flat and shallow as the raised cat bowl shown below.

Our Senior Kitty Needed a Raised Cat Bowl

We noticed that our senior kitty was looking awkward when eating. His food bowls have always been placed at floor level on a non slip mat.

He was still able to access his food, however his rear legs were starting to splay and looked awkward. Oh dear, this was no good.

In addition, the floors are hardwood throughout the house and it was becoming difficult for him to get any purchase on the floorboards.

He was still eating all of his food but it was definitely becoming more difficult for him to crouch  down to floor level.

Once this problem had been identified the solution, in this house, was to make a raised feeding platform.  

There are many and varied raised feeding platforms that are available to purchase but with a home handyman in residence, it was off to the shed to provide a solution.

feeding platform for senior cat

Kitty walking away. Is he going to like his raised feeding platform?

The end result is a raised box, made from wood and painted white.

The top and sides of the box have been ​covered with fiber glass to make it waterproof and easy to wipe clean.  As you can see in the photo below, some non slip drawer liner has been cut to fit.

I have cut several of these fabric pieces to size so that are some spares while some are being washed. 

raised cat feeding platform

Raised cat food platform ready for action.

As there is a slight raised edge to the box, the bowl cannot be pushed over the edge plus the liner helps to keep the bowl in place.

Taking into consideration, the non slip mat underneath the box, the raised edge of the box and the non slip liner in the top of the box it is all extremely stable and doesn’t move at all when being used by kitty.

The box is big enough for just one bowl.  Kitty has his water elsewhere.

I just wish kitty had better table manners as sometimes it looks as though a toddler has been throwing the food around.

elevated cat feeding platform

Non slip mat, raised cat feeding box, non slip fabric and finally food bowl. What we do for kitty!

Another option regarding non slip would be to add some non slip material around the edges on the base of the box, however it was just as easy to put the box onto the non slip mat.

If buying a mat online,  check that it is non slip if needed for your floor surface.
This particular mat has worn extremely well. It has been washed and washed, dries quickly and has been an excellent purchase.

It’s hardly showing any signs of wear and it’s at least two years old. ​ I also spot clean the mat.  

This has probably helped the longevity of the mat. There is a
review of this feeding mat and others here.

As mentioned above the top of the box has been covered with fiber glass so that it is easy to wipe out with a wet or damp cloth.

The same effect could be achieved by using a waterproof sealer.

The box dimensions are 4"Height, 12"Width and 10"Depth.

kitty eating at his raised cat bowl

Kitty eating at comfortably at his raised food bowl

The photo shows that kitty doesn’t have to bend right over to the floor to reach his food and he looks quite comfortable eating at the new higher level.  

After months now of using the raised cat feeding platform made specially for him, our cat has decided that it is a good idea to take the food out of the bowl and put it onto the floor.

We are attributing this to old age and hoping this new behavior may stop.   He does have some dementia so we are just dutifully wiping the entire area clean when he has finished eating. Fortunately he seems to have forgotten this new behavior. Maybe he was just keeping us on our toes.

Anyway... back to cats that are behaving normally...

The height of the box or feeding platform will depend on the size of your cat.

Also be aware that cats are natural crouch eaters so don’t use a platform that is too high.  
For us the main reason for using the platform was the age of our kitty and the trouble he was having crouching right down to reach his bowl at floor level.

There are a lot of practical solutions for cat feeding platforms and options to suit all decors. 

Raised cat bowls