Is Your Cat Too Fat?
No one wants to admit that their little fluffy has gotten, well, fluffy. Cats can gain weight, and as they get older, their metabolism tends to slow down. Approximately 60 percent of cats are overweight, according to the Associate for Pet Obesity Prevention, this is an alarmingly high number. This excess weight can create health problems like cat diabetes. Cat fat is especially important to keep under control, and it’s vital to take steps to prevent this fat from impacting their health.
According to VetNutrition, Cummings Veterinary Medical Center at Tufts University, most cats should weigh 7-12 pounds. While this can vary on the cat’s frame, Cummings does insist that it is better to use a body condition score than weight. They also say that indoor cats have a bigger chance of becoming overweight if they are less active.
According to PetMDand Dr. Sandra Mitchell, DVM, your cat can fall into these three categories:
Healthy, Underweight, and Overweight.
How to Tell if Your Cat is Overweight
One way is to feel along your cat’s rib cage. The padding there should feel as thick as the padding on the back of your hand. If you need to press firmly to feel your cat’s ribs, then they may be overweight. If by chance, you can’t feel them at all, your little kitty is obese.There is also the 1-5 condition score you can use. First, stand over your cat and look down while your furry companion is standing. A cat with a healthy weight will have a slight indentation above the hips that will resemble a waistline. If your kitty’s sides bulge out, you may have a chubby cat on your hands.
How Too Much Weight Affects Your Fat Cat
As much as we want a healthy cat, too much weight can have a significant mental impact on humans. This is also true of your cat. Unlike us, a cat won’t look in the mirror, wishing they were thinner. One impact of too much weight in cats is a lack of grooming and play. This may lead to a urinary tract infection or other skin problems. Your cat may also suffer from a form of anxiety or depression.
If this isn’t enough, many cats will overeat in response to stress or feelings that are negative. This can leave your cat obese and prone to different diseases and adverse health. These can be:
- Cat diabetes
- Joint pain
- Chronic inflammation
One common cause of your cat gaining weight is overfeeding. Another is a lack of exercise or not enough of it. This happens without you realizing it. Even if you feed them regularly and the right food, you may go overboard with cat treats, and it’s hard to resist such an adorable face.
As cats grow older, their metabolism slows down, which is similar to humans. Cat fat is a legitimate concern for all felines. Additionally, an older cat has different needs when it comes to their nutrition; then they needed as a kitten. You can’t feed them the same type or amount of food as you used to. Also, allowing your cat to snack all day from a bowl of food is another example of weight gain in cats and can cause obesity in your feline. Once you’ve noticed some weight gain, feel free to contact your vet to go over options on how best to help your cat trim some fat.
Tips to Help Your Cat Trim some Cat Fat
You want your cat to stay the lean, mean, playful machine that is was when it was younger. Unfortunately, there may be a time when you notice that your best friend has put on some extra weight. Knowing your cat has added some extra pounds is only halfway to getting the problem under control.
Ask your vet for advice. Take your precious kitty to the vet. A vet can look at whether or not there are any underlying issues with your cat’s health to rule out. If any diseases are ruled out, then the vet can offer some fantastic meal guidelines so your kitty can lose some weight. A vet will be your best ally in helping you keep your cat’s weight at where it needs to be. Also, keep in mind, a severely overweight cat will need specialized care.
Manage your cat’s food intake. This should be done under the care of a vet, as doing so drastically can cause health problems. This can cause things like stress, refusal to eat any new food you offer, to starvation. You may need to switch to a specific formula for weight control or if your cat is particularly big a prescription food formula. Before you decide to change foods or manage your cat’s food intake, speak with your vet as they’ll give you a better idea of how much to feed them and what brand is best.
Increase your cat’s activity. Like humans, cats need exercise. Like their human counterparts, getting them to do it is never easy. On the plus side, cats won’t need a crazy amount of exercise to keep them healthy. This does vary with age and breed, but generally, two fifteen-minute sessions daily will do the trick.
A key to being successful is working with your vet and other family members. Flexibility is also essential as your cat’s needs may be specific and require it. Keep track of all your cat’s food intake, type of food, and even brand. This can also mean weighing out your feline’s dinner on a scale at home. While you may need to take a few extra steps, your cat’s health is essential.
If your cat has ever leaped onto your lap and knocked some wind out of you, then you may have a tubby kitty. As much as you may want to coddle and love your cat, cat fat isn’t as cute as it looks. Taking proper care of your cat is showing how much you love your feline companion. Reversing your cat’s obesity will significantly improve their quality of life and add more times to cuddle without overheating your lap.
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