Must-Have Feeding Accessories For Cats

cat puzzle feeder

Ah, feeding time… at our house it’s a little bit of a circus. In the morning they go into our cat friendly and safe backyard. If it’s dark outside (at night) we have to put them in a bedroom while we prepare the food. There is just no way to prep three feeders (with various medications) and not have the cats all up in our business. 


Thankfully we have multiple tools and accessories to make the job easier! Our three cats (Biscuit, Sioux and Bacon) eat an all-canned diet. Why? Canned diets are a) high in moisture (and cats are notoriously poor drinkers) and b) tend to be higher in protein and lower in carbs, i.e. more like what they would eat in the wild…a mouse…YUM!


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My #1 FAVORITE feeding tool is….


The SureFeed Microchip Feeder by Sure Petcare  


I have three of these!
SureFeed Microchip Pet Feeder Connect SureFeed Microchip Pet Feeder Connect

This is a MUST HAVE feeding station for every cat owner! This is the newest version, called "Connect." You can purchase an optional "Hub" that allows you to view all the tiny details about your cat's feeding habits. I use it without the Hub, so I do miss out on some of the features. I still 100% recommend the SureFeed Microchip Feeder!


As a feline-only veterinarian, I recommend these feeders literally EVERY SINGLE DAY in practice. Yep. I have three cats and three feeders. When I’ve had four cats, it’s four feeders. 


What am I talking about? The microchip feeder works like this… when Fluffy walks up to HER feeder, the device recognizes HER microchip and opens ONLY FOR HER. 


Pro Tip: The feeder hub is recommended but OPTIONAL! The feeder will work fine without it, but adding the hub gets you extra functionality such as monitoring how often your cat is eating and how much.



No microchip? No problem! The SureFeed Microchip Feeder includes collar tags for cats that are not microchipped. Umm, but since your cat SHOULD be microchipped, you can also just have one quickly placed by your veterinarian. (That was a shameless plug for microchips)


“My other cats will butt in and steal the food when the door is open.” 


Front Cover for SureFeed Microchip Feeders Front Cover for SureFeed Microchip Feeders

I love these cutouts that allow your cat plenty of room to eat all the while discouraging sneaky friends from butting their little heads in.


Don’t worry, Sure Petcare has thought of all the real-life situations that occur and they’ve come up with solutions. For example, you can put the feeder into “Intruder Mode” so that if a different cat’s microchip is detected the unit will gently close. 


You can also purchase accessories for the feeder that cover up the back (for sneaky friends) as well as make the front opening a bit smaller. 


Sure Petcare - SureFeed Microchip Feeder Rear Cover Sure Petcare - SureFeed Microchip Feeder Rear Cover

For those SNEAKY HOUSEMATES that wait for just the right minute when the feeder opens. HA! THERE'S A SOLUTION FOR THAT!


There are SO many advantages to the SureFeed Microchip Feeders! 


  1. You can feed different foods to different cats! 
  2. You can know exactly how much a certain cat is eating. Free feeding unknown amounts of food is wrought with problems. 
  3. Now, with the new “connected” version, you can know all the details about when your cat is eating. The connected version can also weigh the food to an exact amount. Great for cats on a specific weight loss plan. 
  4. Canned food stays fresher since it is covered. 


No longer can you use the excuse of having multiple cats when different diets are recommended for specific cats! 


You can also purchase silicone mats and bowls in various colors. We use the stainless steel bowls



For dishing out the canned food I love this silicone spoon because the width of the spoon is the same width as a cat food can. 



If I only use a portion of a can I use these handy multi-size silicone lids. They are truly one size fits all! I use them on both our 3 and 6 oz cat food cans, as well as for my dog’s large cans. 


Messy Mutts Silicone Universal Can Cover | Fits 3 Can Sizes – Small, Medium, Large Messy Mutts Silicone Universal Can Cover | Fits 3 Can Sizes – Small, Medium, Large

LOVE that these fit ALL my cans! We do have to keep these away from our clinic cat (Louie) because he likes to drag them off and hide them!


Lick Mats, Treat / Dry Food Dispensers and Puzzles 


Does your cat have a habit of inhaling her food in seconds and then…VOMITING ALL THE FOOD RIGHT BACK UP? Did you know there’s a medical term for that…wait for it…”The Scarf & Barf.” I’m so happy to share my medical knowledge with you! 


If this is your cat then food dispensers, puzzles and lick mats will be right up your cat’s alley! 


These innovative accessories are designed to encourage slower eating, ensuring that your kitty takes her time to savor each bite and digest her food properly


Slow feeders come in various forms, from puzzle bowls to interactive mats. These tools feature intricate designs that create obstacles or compartments, forcing your cat to work for her food and take smaller bites. 


Catit Senses 2.0 Digger Interactive Slow Feeder - Turn Mealtime into Play Time Catit Senses 2.0 Digger Interactive Slow Feeder - Turn Mealtime into Play Time

I love the different depths and watching my cats stick their paws in to dig out a treat! So good for their mental stimulation!


Not only do slow feeders promote healthy eating habits, but they also provide mental stimulation for your cat. The interactive nature of these accessories engages their natural curiosity and instincts, turning mealtime into a fun and engaging activity. Plus, the added challenge of getting to her food can help keep your cat mentally sharp and entertained. 


Doc & Phoebe's Indoor Hunting Feeders Doc & Phoebe's Indoor Hunting Feeders

Encourage your cat's natural hunting instincts with these feeders, perfect for a few treats or kibble.


When selecting a slow feeder for your cat, consider her individual needs and preferences. Some cats may prefer the challenge of a puzzle feeder, while others might enjoy the tactile experience of using an interactive mat. Experimenting with different types of slow feeders will help you find the perfect match for your cat’s unique personality and dining style.


I also love slow feeder lick mats! *Important* These should be used with supervision because some cats (and certainly dogs) have a “thing” for silicone and will bite into it and even chew off pieces. That’s an obstruction risk! Thankfully, none of our cats at home or at our clinic have done this, but I’ve heard stories…


Lick mats are also a great way to distract your cat during grooming sessions! 


Fishy shaped!
Good for dry food too!
$16.95 ($16.95 / Count)
Good for dry food too!
$16.95 ($16.95 / Count)
02/19/2024 11:27 pm GMT


Cats need stimulation and enrichment at feeding time. Remember, they are hunters! Yes, even Princess the Persian has those hunting instincts deep inside. Food dispensers and puzzles are awesome for keeping your cat’s mind going and slowing them down! 


I usually feed Nature’s Instinct Mixers as treats, but here are some other treat options.


My Favorite
Instinct Freeze Dried Raw Boost Mixers Instinct Freeze Dried Raw Boost Mixers

My cats go crazy for these treats that give them a little bit of crunch since they eat all caned food!




As with any new feeding accessory, it may take some time for your cat to adjust to feeding puzzles. Start by introducing the puzzle during regular mealtimes, gradually replacing her traditional food bowl. Or just do like me… set it up and see what happens then start over with a slow introduction if they don’t take to it right away. 


Use small treats or a mix of dry and wet food to entice her and make the experience enjoyable. Over time, your cat will become adept at solving the puzzles! Remember to rotate what puzzles you use! 


I hope you enjoyed learning about MY favorite feeding accessories. Let me know in the comments below if you have any favorites that I should try.

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I’m Dr. Amber Carter. Board-certified feline-veterinarian. Business owner. Homeschooling mom. Cancer survivor. Hot chocolate connoisseur. 

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