DIY Dog Proof Cat Feeder: Give Your Cat a Moment of Peace While Eating

A dog and a cat eating from the same bowl
Steve Corelli
Written by Steve Corelli

Cats love to eat, and so do dogs. Some pet lovers live with both cats and dogs under the same roof. Surprisingly, they do get along, and they may even snuggle cutely together in the same bed as you’ve probably seen many times while surfing the net. However, mealtimes are usually not as cute or peaceful. Usually in this case, either they will fight to win the right to the food, or the cat will be forced to give up their food to the stronger dog. To keep your cat from going hungry, you should make a DIY dog proof cat feeder.

It’s best to leave the out-in-the-open bowl to your dog and give your cat a better place to eat. No more worrying about your cat getting hurt over a dispute for food. Once you’ve learned how to craft your cat’s very own feeder that your dog won’t have access to, not only will you be able to create a stress-free environment for your cat, but your dog will also not be able to overeat—allowing both of them to stay healthy and happy. There will be peace in the house.

Image showing a dog and cat feedeing  in the laundry room

True, it’s easier to just purchase a commercial dog proof cat feeder from the store, but if you’re on a budget or if you have time for a fun side-project, and you want to show your pets how much you love them, making a DIY dog proof cat feeder at home can be a rewarding experience. It’s very easy to make, and you can choose the ideal one for you out of many unique variations. Read through this article, and you will be able to tailor-make the feeder to your cat and dog’s individual needs.

Cat Feeder #1: Dome Feeder

This type of cat feeder is quite intricate compared to the rest of the feeders mentioned in this article. It’s quite big yet made-to-fit for cats (no dogs allowed). Your pet will love it since cats love private spaces. It’s also dome-shaped, making it quite unique in terms of appearance when compared to the rest of the cat feeders we have here.

Image showing a kitten and a Dome Feeder in the background

To build this dome-shaped cat feeder, here are the materials you need to prepare:

  • Wooden Pallets – This will be the basis for the dome shape. Make sure that the wood pallets are lightweight and be sure to pick small-sized ones only.

  • Hammer and Nails – We will be doing woodwork, so be sure to bring these two partners with you.

  • Blanket – To keep your cat safe and warm inside while she eats.

How to Make It

This is quite easy to do but may require a bit more time and effort since you need to be creative to shape this into a dome.

  • Create the door first by using pieces of pallets to form two small walls. Place the wooden pallets vertically next to each other. This will serve as the entrance.

  • Place wooden pallets on top of the two small walls to form a ceiling for the entrance that will bind the walls together. Be sure to apply wood pallets above the ceiling to further bind the ceiling pallets together.

  • Create the feeder in the shape of an igloo. Create the first wall of the igloo by placing a taller pallet in a vertical position beside the small entrance walls; that means you have to apply one wood each beside both walls.

  • Place wooden pallets in a horizontal position, and angle them at 45 degrees to form the first part of the dome. Be sure to leave little gaps for air ventilation.

  • Place one pallet in a vertical position in the middle and at the other edge of the horizontal pallet walls. Nail them shut to bind them together.

  • Do the previous two steps again. But this time, you will place the wooden pallets in a vertical position while the binder pallet will be placed vertically at the top and middle of the vertical pallet set. Place them at the same angle as the entrance walls this time.

  • Do the same procedure on the last part of the wall which is at the back. Do it by placing the woods exactly like the first wall set of the dome.

  • Finally, build some pallets above the walls to act as the ceiling. However, don’t nail shut the half of the ceiling that will be used to insert food into the dome once it’s feeding time.

  • Add a blanket inside if you want to.

This cat feeder is not that complicated, but you will need to have a lot of patience to spare since it will take quite a lot of time to build it perfectly. Once you’re done with it, though, your cat may like it so much that she treats it as a place to sleep.

Cat Feeder #2: Cage Feeder

This cage-like cat feeder is not meant to double as a resting spot since it lacks space for your cat to move around in. This simple feeder only has one purpose: to help your cat feed privately.

A cat getting out of a cage feeder and a dog

The cage is designed to keep your dog’s paws from entering so he won’t be able to grab or steal your cat’s food. Here are the materials needed to build it:

  • Wood Planks – Lots of 1 x 1 wood planks are needed to build this cage-like apparatus successfully.

  • Wooden Board – For creating the base and ceiling of the cat feeder.

  • Hinges and Screws- To be installed into the ceiling so the food can be taken in and out of the feeder easily.

  • Nails and Hammer – There’s a lot of woodwork to be done.

  • Wood Cutter or Saw – You will have to cut a bit of wood as well.

How to Make It

This one won’t take a long time to finish, especially if you’re skilled at woodwork. Here are the steps you need to follow to build this small cage feeder:

  • Place the wooden base on the floor.

  • Form a square by placing four wooden planks horizontally.

  • Place wooden planks vertically on top of all of the four horizontal planks to form a cage. Be sure that the space between each vertical plank will not allow a dog to reach in with his paws. At the same time, make a gap on one pair of vertical planks that’s just big enough for your cat to go through.

  • Cut one plank and nail it horizontally to the pair with larger gaps. This will serve as the cat’s entrance. Place a wooden plank vertically in the middle of the small horizontal plank to shorten the gap around the top.

  • Screw some hinges to the opposite side of the entrance at the top planks.

  • Attach the other wooden board on the hinges to form a door-like ceiling so you can place your cat’s tray inside when it’s mealtime easily.

This is actually less complicated than the first feeder and has a nifty design that makes it much more preferable for indoor use.

Cat Feeder #3: Cage Feeder Ver. 2

You can consider this as an alternate version of the cage cat feeder or its final form. The materials required to build this version are the same as the previous one, although you’ll notice some differences in the building process as you make it.

A cat sitting in a Tiered Cat Feeding Station

Here are the required materials:

  • Wood Planks – You will be needing less 1 x 1 wood planks for this one than you did for the previous cage. You can also use wood pallets. You will also need four longer planks for the feeder’s stand.

  • Wooden Board – You will need five for this version, and that doesn’t include the base anymore. This time, you will place it along the walls to act as the perfect feeding shelter.

  • Hinges and Screws – You will be needing this once again for the ceiling of the cat feeder.

  • Nails and Hammer – There will be woodwork, so bring out this dynamic duo once again.

  • Marker and Saw – You will be cutting quite a lot of wood.

How to Make It

This alternate version of the cat feeder is more complicated and will require more time to make than the previous version. However, its design is much more preferable. Here’s how you make it:

  • Build this upside down this time; place the ceiling on the floor first.

  • Attach two hinges on one side of the wooden board to create the opening.

  • Attach the other wooden board to the hinge of the ceiling to create the back wall.

  • Nail the four taller planks to create the stand of the feeder. Now the base product is complete.

  • Follow up with the three other wooden boards to create the walls. Nail them by the walls, and not by the ceiling!

  • Create wooden pillars at the bottom-half of the side walls by marking vertical rectangles and then cutting them with a saw. This helps your cat breathe easier as she eats inside the feeder.

  • That’s right! You will leave a huge hole in the bottom part of the feeder. That’s why you only need five boards.

  • Create a bottom floor near the very bottom of the stands. Simply place one pillar horizontally on the front and back of the wooden stand pairs, and place more planks vertically to connect them with the horizontal ones.

  • Do the same above the bottom floor, but only do so to half of the floor to make it look like a staircase.

  • Install some wooden planks on the very bottom part of the wooden base, but only attach planks vertically on the empty side your wooden “stairs.” This will serve as the floor and the area where the tray is.

This version is indeed complicated, but you will see this as more fun than the previous cat feeder since you will surely love how your cat will climb the mini-stairs that you have built for them to reach their food.

Cat Feeder #4: Simple Wooden Cat Feeder

This cat feeder is so far the simplest among all of the feeders mentioned in this article since there will be less nailing and you won’t need to use planks or pallets anymore.

Rustic Cat Dish Holder in a house

You only need a few materials as well—making this version a cheaper one compared to the first three feeders. Here are the materials that you need:

  • Wooden Boards – This time, you will need six of them since you will build a base for the feeder. Just choose thin wooden boards so the feeder will be lighter and easier to carry around.

  • Hammer and Nails – For attaching all of the boards together with ease.

  • Marker and Saw – You will be adding a few holes in your cat feeder.

  • Hinges and Screws – You will create a ceiling door so that you can place the tray and the food inside easily.

How to Make It

If you don’t have a lot of time to spare so you’re looking for a feeder that you can finish in a jiffy, this is the one for you. Here’s how you make it:

  • Place a wooden board on the floor.

  • Mark a horizontal rectangle on the top part of the four wooden boards that you will build as the wall.

  • Cut the wooden boards according to the marker that we just made to build some windows.

  • On one of the wooden boards, cut a small rectangle or a square that will serve as your cat’s entrance. Cut the marked wood afterwards.

  • Build the four walls by attaching four wooden boards on each side of the wooden base. Nail them shut.

  • Attach two hinges on the top part of the opposite side of where you made the cat’s entry and exit hole. Screw it shut.

  • Screw the ceiling board on the other end of the hinges to build a door-like contraption to place your pet’s food tray inside easily.

This is quite simple to build, and it doesn’t require you to follow any complicated steps. Cutting holes on the board is also very easy to do. This feeder is also quite portable since the wooden boards used to build this are lighter and thinner than the other versions.

Cat Feeder #5: Drawer Feeder

This last version of the cat feeder is very easy to make and environmentally-friendly. If you have an unused old wooden drawer at home, you’ll be glad to know that you can finally recycle it into something more useful.

Image showing Drawer Feeder for cats

Here are the materials you need to reshape the wooden drawer into a cat feeder:

  • Wooden Drawer – Just choose a small wooden drawer that’s not in use anymore.

  • Wooden Board – You will still need one piece of thin wooden board.

  • Marker and Saw – To make cutouts around the drawer to turn it into your cat’s feeder.

  • Screws and Hinges – You will build a door this time.

How to Make It

This version is not very hard to make since you will only be making modifications to the drawer. It will take less than 20 minutes to get this one built. Here’s how you make it:

  • Remove the drawers since you will be needing only the base skeleton.

  • Attach some hinges along the empty sides and place wooden boards to serve as the door. This is not for your cat. The door is for you so you can place the food bowl inside easily.

    • If the drawer has a small cabinet at the bottom, you can skip this step and simply use that cabinet as the door.

  • Create a small hole where your cat can fit in on either side of the drawer or at the bottom.

As you can see, this one is really easy to make since you won’t have to build the whole feeder from scratch. Rest assured that your cat will love this simple item. This project also gives you the chance to recycle your old drawer. You will be able to open up some space in the attic and save money since wood can cost you a lot.

Wrap Up

Cats and dogs may be nice to see when they’re together, but they might dispute over food at some point. The dog may even wound the cat, especially if there is a big size difference between them. To prevent such catastrophic occurrences, building a DIY cat feeder is a viable solution.

These cat feeders are quite nifty. Mealtimes will no longer be a disastrous and stressful event. The bigger cat feeders can also serve as your cat’s napping spot or shelter if it’s rainy outside. That’s why some pet parents choose to place pillows or blankets inside the feeders.

Image of a Rustic Wood Pet Feeder

So go ahead and pick the one that you think will suit your cat and dog’s needs best. Or you can also pick one based on your perceived level of DIY proficiency. If you’re not used to undertaking DIY projects, you might want to go for the simple cage feeder instead of the more complicated dome feeder and vice versa.

Which cat feeder do you think will suit your cat best? Would you care to make it at home DIY or would you rather purchase a commercial one to save time? If we missed any good DIY dog proof cat feeder variety, be sure to let us know in the comments section!

About the author
Steve Corelli
Steve Corelli

Steve Corelli is a Pet Nutrition Expert from Allentown, Pennsylvania. He is the author of many nutritional strategies for different breeds and a member of some Pet Food development teams. His Maine Coon Stephan, as you might guess, is always well-fed.