Helping an Obese Cat Lose Weight [+ 10 Diet and Exercise Tips]
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– Animal Planet In Cats, Constipation Can Be a Serious Problem.
Reasons To Help YourOverweight CatLose theExtra Pounds
Cats that are overweight or obese are at a higher risk of developing a variety of health problems in their lifetime. Overweight cats, according to the Tufts University Veterinary Medical Center, are at greater risk for developing:
- Diabetes in cats, urinary illness in cats, osteoarthritis in cats, inflammation in cats, hormonal abnormalities in cats, shorter life spans in cats
As you can see, yourcat’s weight has a significant impact on his or her overall health. Understanding feline obesity and why your cat may be gaining weight may help you “tilt the scales” in the direction of a healthy weight for your feline companion.
Best Practices for Putting Your Cat on aWeight Loss Diet
So, what can you do if your cat is already overweight and needs to lose weight? Make losing weight a high priority for your cat’s well-being. The most effective strategy to assist a cat in losing weight is to assist them in consuming less calories than they burn via activity, which will necessitate some modifications to their daily routine. Prior to beginning a new feeding schedule and diet, make certain that both you and your cat are prepared to do so. Follow these key practices to ensure a successful project:
Start By Consulting Your Veterinarian
You should schedule an appointment with your veterinarian before attempting to reduce your cat’s excessive weight. The physiology and nutritional requirements of each individual cat are unique. Even modest adjustments to your cat’s diet, food volume, or feeding frequency can have significant consequences, whether for the better or for the worse. Your veterinarian is the most qualified source of advice when it comes to developing a safe and individualized weight reduction strategy for your particular pet.
Determine the Amount of Weight YourCat Needsto Lose
Before beginning a weight-loss program for your cat, you must first decide how much weight she needs to drop. According to the American Pet Products Association, the normal home cat should weigh between 8 and 10 pounds. Having said that, you should consult with your veterinarian about your cat’s sideal body weight because factors such as breed and age have a role. In order to determine your cat’s size and health, you should do more than just weigh them.
You or your veterinarian can also check your cat and assign them a score based on their bodily condition. The way it works is as follows: Source:WSAVA A cat with a body condition score of 5 out of 9 is regarded to be of optimal weight.
Take Time Transitioning to Your Cat’sNew Diet(2 to 3 Weeks)
Make a strategy for how you’ll adjust your cat’s diet before you try any weight-loss strategies on them. Then gradually transfer them from their current diet and exercise program to the new one. The majority of cat owners are guilty of overfeeding their cats and failing to provide adequate exercise, and your cat will reject any drastic adjustments in diet. Make a gradual transition from your present feeding routine (meal kind, volume, frequency, etc.) to your new feeding schedule. To make a successful transition to a new food, you should allow at least two weeks between each meal.
This will assist your cat in becoming used to the change, and it will also allow you to observe whether or not they have any negative responses to the new diet.
Pair Exercise With YourCat’s Weight Loss Diet
Make a strategy for how you’ll adjust your cat’s diet before you start experimenting with different weight-loss strategies. Then gradually transfer your cat from their current food and activity routine to the new regime. Overfeeding and inadequate exercise are common problems among cat owners, which means that your cat will be resistant to any drastic changes in his or her routine. Make a gradual transition from your present feeding pattern (food type, volume, frequency, etc.) to your new feeding schedule.
You may mix the foods together, gradually shifting the ratio from primarily the present food to primarily the new food as you go along.
Don’t Rush theWeight LossProcess
Last but not least, be patient. If you substantially reduce the amount of food you give your cat or increase the amount of activity he gets, he may become ill. Cats that go two days without eating, for example, are more likely to acquire fatty liver disease than other cats (hepatic lipidosis). If this illness is not addressed, it might progress to liver failure. This potentially dangerous illness may be avoided if you arrange a complete health assessment with your veterinarian and work together to develop a solid weight-loss strategy.
A cat may safely lose between 0.5 and 2 percent of their body weight per week, so use it as a guideline for your expectations of how much weight they will drop.
10 Tips To Help YourCat Lose Weight
Now, let’s have a look at some ways for assisting yourcat in losing weight safely and gently.
1. Hide Their Meals and Litter Box
Exercise is not something that indoor catsoften are interested in doing, and this contributes to their obesity problems. By rearranging your cat’s food bowl and litter box around the room, you can encourage greater mobility. Place them in a new area each day so that your cat needs to go out of his way to find them and get some exercise in the process. You could put them on the floor where they spend the least amount of time, or you could put them on different floors so that they have to go up and down the stairs on a regular basis.
If your home has more than one story, you could put them on the floor where they spend the most time, or you could put them on separate floors so that they have to go up and down the stairs every day.
2. Use a Treat Toy or Feeding Ball
Cats aren’t scared to put in some effort in exchange for rewards. Consider purchasing or making reward toys and feeding balls that will entice your cat to swap some physical effort for a tasty treat. Not only do they transform meals into playtime, but they also give both cerebral and physical stimulation to the participants. Because these toys release food a small amount at a time, they can also assist to slow down the rate at which your cat consumes food.
3. Spread Out Meals
If you just feed your cat once a day, this routine may encourage your cat to overindulge in food. Instead, consider distributing their typical quantity of food across a number of feeding occasions. Providing your cat with several little meals throughout the day can prevent him from being overly hungry at one point in the day. This method might also be beneficial if you’re progressively decreasing the amount of food you give your cat. In the event that you’re reducing your cat’s calorie intake, providing them with more opportunities to eat will prevent them from whining from hunger.
4. Try Using an Automatic Feeder That Opens Based on a Timer
An automated feeder is another technique that cat owners may employ to combat obesity in their cats. The food is released via an automated feeder at a predetermined time each day, precisely monitoring and managing the quantity of calories your cat consumes, even when you are not around. To keep your cat from overeating, use a timer-based feeder rather than one that opens based on your cat’s movements.
5. Add Water or Replace With Water
To make your cat feel fuller even if they are eating less food than they were previously, mix some water into the cat’s diet. If you’re giving us dried food, you may increase the quantity of water you put into their meal to make it more nutritious. Adding water also helps to increase their hydration, which is important because dehydration is a prevalent problem for cats. You may get the same result by adding water to wet or canned food as well. Alternatively, if your cat is still clamoring for food when it isn’t mealtime, consider providing them with new drinking water.
Alternatively, you might provide a hydrating snack that is low in calories, such as our Instant Goat’s Milk for cats.
6. Play for 30 Minutes
To make your cat feel fuller even if they are eating less food than they were previously, mix some water into the food you are serving them. For our dehydrated food, you may increase the quantity of water added to the dish to make it more palatable for them. Dehydration is a common problem for cats, and adding water helps to increase their hydration. You may achieve the same result by adding water to wet or canned food. Alternatively, if your cat is still clamoring for food even if it is not mealtime, consider providing them with fresh drinking water instead.
A low-calorie hydrating snack, such as our Instant Goat’s Milk for cats, might be be used as an alternative. It fills your cat’s tummy, contains probiotics that are good for their intestines, and adds a little additional taste to their routine. It only has 10 calories per serving and is low in fat.
7. Go for a Walk
Pet walks aren’t only for canines anymore! Taking a walk around the neighborhood can be beneficial for your cat as well, provided your pet has the correct temperament for it. A cat should be harnessed and leashed, rather than wearing a collar, according to Texas Humane Heroes. As they become adjusted to the leash, provide them with plenty of goodies to encourage them to enjoy the procedure. Allow your cat to take the lead on the first few walks to get them used to the procedure. Never tug your cat while on a leash when walking with them.
8. Replace High-Carb Foods With Filler-Free Cat Foods
Pet walks aren’t only for canines any longer, either. Taking a walk about the neighborhood may be beneficial for cats as well, assuming your cat has the appropriate temperament for it. Cats should be harnessed and leashed, not collared, according to Texas Humane Heroes. Throughout the process of getting them used to the leash, reward them with plenty of goodies. Allow your cat to take the lead on the first few walks to get them used to the procedure. Never tug your cat while on a leash when walking your dog.
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- Foods such as Grain Free Turkey Dehydrated Cat Food, Grain Free Salmon-Turkey Pâté, Minced Chicken in Bone Broth Gravy, and Grain Free Salmon-Turkey Pâté are available.
Foods such as Grain Free Turkey Dehydrated Cat Food, Grain Free Salmon-Turkey Pâté, Minced Chicken in Bone Broth Gravy, and Grain Free Salmon-Turkey Pâté are also available.
9. Switch to Lean Meat Foods
Making the move from fatty or carb-heavy diets to a high-protein diet that includes lean meats such as chicken or turkey is an excellent method to assist yourcat in losing weight while also boosting their nutrition.
10. If You Have Multiple Cats, Separate Them During Feeding Time
It may seem unusual, but separating your cats at meals will assist your overweight cat(s) in reaching their weight loss objectives more quickly and effectively. In the event that you’re giving your overweight catorobese cat a specific diet, you’ll want to make certain that they’re the only ones who are eating it. When the cats aren’t all chowing down at the same time, it’s much simpler to observe what they’re eating and how much they’re consuming. Aside from that, cats have a tendency to overeat when they see other cats as competitors.
Allow them 10 to 15 minutes to finish their meals before removing the bowls.
If you are unable to feed them in separate rooms, consider feeding them in the same room with the door closed, but at various times during the day or night.
Baby gates can also be used to split a single room into two or more sections. The following is recommended reading: Pica in Cats: What It Is, Common Causes, and Treatment Options
Try High-Quality, Human Grade Cat Foods That Cats Love
It may seem unusual, but separating your cats at meals will assist your overweight cat(s) in reaching their weight loss objectives more quickly and successfully. In the event that you’re feeding your overweight catorobese cat a specific diet, you’ll want to make certain that they’re the only ones who are getting it. Having them all chowing down at the same time makes it much more difficult to see what and how much each cat is consuming. Aside from that, cats have a tendency to overeat when they see other cats as competitors..
Take away the bowls once they’ve had 10 to 15 minutes to finish eating.
You can explore feeding them in the same room with the door closed, but at different times, if you are unable to feed them in two separate rooms.
This article is highly recommended: Pica in Cats: What It Is, Common Causes, and Treatment Options.
Meet the Author:Ben Kerns
Ben Kerns is a San Diego-based freelance writer, photographer, and outdoor enthusiast who lives and works in the city. Whenever he isn’t working, you can find him traveling the world in search of new spots to climb large boulders. He’s also obsessively focused on finding the cheapest way possible to support his outdoor passions while staying as healthy as possible. This material may get rather pricey very quickly.
How to Help a Cat Lose Weight
Even a couple of extra pounds can have a significant impact on the health of your cat. More than half of cat owners have a cat who is overweight or obese. In addition, while it’s easy to ignore a few more ounces or dismiss it as merely extra-fluffy fur, excess fat has serious repercussions. Whatever the reason for your cat’s weight gain, whether it’s the threat of a reduced lifetime, an increased likelihood of health problems or simply mobility issues, even a few additional pounds can have a significant influence on his or her health.
- The impact of weight loss in cats is easy to overlook when your physician estimates that your cat might lose two pounds or less.
- However, when you consider that the typical cat weighs 10 pounds, two pounds constitutes a significant problem!
- Consider the typical 160-pound person and compare him or her to the average 10-pound cat to see how they compare.
- And if the typical cat carries three pounds of extra weight about on their frame, that is the equivalent of approximately 50 pounds of extra weight carried around on the average human body.
- If you have a 5-pound Siamese that is fragile, even 8 ounces will make a difference.
- However, BMI charts and other rules that are effective for the vast majority of humans are ineffective for cats.
- The 1-5 scale or the 1-9 scale are frequently used to score the body condition of cats.
You can use a scale to track your cat’s weight reduction objectives on a monthly basis if he or she surpasses the optimum score, but you’ll still want to perform a hands-on and visual check as you get closer to your target.
In order to establish your cat’s bodily condition and set weight loss objectives, you should consult with your veterinarian.
Consider the following: Find out what your cat’s body condition score is.
The goal of weight loss should be to enhance health, but cats must follow a specific weight loss strategy to ensure that their liver is not harmed as a result of the weight loss.
Fatty liver disease, which your veterinarian will most likely refer to as hepatic lipidosis, can be caused by fast weight loss in some cases, and it can be fatal in the worst case scenario.
It is recommended that you aim for weight reduction of only 3 to 4 percent of your cat’s total body weight every month.
Increase your cat’s L-carnitine intake by providing them with low-calorie treats or a supplement.
There is only minimal evidence, including a 2002 research, indicating L-carnitine can assist preserve the liver when dieting and weight reduction is taking place.
Consider the following: How to Assist Your Cat in Regaining a Healthy Weight How to Incorporate Exercise into Your Hunt-Eat-Groom-Sleep-Repeat Routine It is likely that your cat already has a favorite daily rhythm that has been honed through millions of years of development.
This is referred to as the hunt-eat-groom-sleep-repeat cycle, and by knowing it, you may get vital insight into the optimal time to play with your cat.
Right before your cat is about to chow down is the ideal possible moment to engage in playful activity with them.
It’s time to get a favorite toy out of the cupboard and walk your cat around the house in circles.
In this scenario, the answer is straightforward: simply move food around as part of your playing.
If you do that before each of their three meals, you’ll be able to easily integrate 30 minutes of exercise into their daily schedule.
Try dividing their meals into little portions and distributing the food about the home in different locations.
Many cats may find the cerebral stimulation provided by foraging for food around the house to be quite rewarding.
Of course, if you have numerous cats in your household, foraging for food may not be an option.
However, restricting one’s caloric intake is not the only weight-loss strategy to consider.
Changing your cat’s diet from wet to raw may also help him lose weight.
The benefits of greater moisture levels in these diets assist to prevent your cat against chronic dehydration, as well as the urinary stones and infections that are frequently associated with this condition.
When losing weight is your number one priority, raw food is the most effective option.
Furthermore, if given enough time to acclimate, many cats may simply switch to raw food.
The majority of veterinarians are happy to collaborate with you in order to assist your overweight cat lose weight.
So if you’ve tried everything, including switching to raw or wet food (or the lowest carbohydrate choice your cat will eat) and playing with your cat on a regular basis, but the scale still doesn’t budge, consult your veterinarian.
It is likely that your veterinarian’s clinic may be able to assist you in troubleshooting any specific concerns you are experiencing.
Cat Obesity: How to Help Your Cat Lose Weight
It just takes a few more pounds to make a significant difference in your cat’s overall health and well being. An overweight cat is a problem in more than half of cat households. And while it’s easy to ignore a few more ounces or dismiss it as merely a case of extra-fluffy fur, excess fat has severe repercussions. Even a few additional pounds may have a significant influence on your cat’s health, whether it’s the danger of a shorter lifetime, the greater likelihood of health problems, or simply mobility issues.
- When your doctor says your cat might lose two pounds or less, it’s tempting to downplay the significance of weight loss.
- The average cat weighs about 10 pounds, therefore a weight difference of two pounds is a significant issue!
- Two additional pounds on the cat is the equivalent of 32 additional pounds on that 160-pound human.
- If you have a fragile 5-pound Siamese, even 8 ounces will make a difference.
- However, BMI charts and other guidelines that are effective for the vast majority of humans do not function as well for cats in particular.
- The 1-5 scale or the 1-9 scale are commonly used to score the body condition of cats.
- You can use a scale to track your cat’s monthly weight reduction objectives if he or she surpasses the optimum score, but you’ll still want to perform a hands-on and visual check as you get closer to your target weight loss goal.
It is possible to analyze the bodily condition of your cat and create weight reduction objectives with the assistance of your veterinarian..
Here’s something to think about.
It is better to lose weight slowly and steadily than to lose weight quickly and suddenly.
Fatty liver disease can occur in cats that lose a lot of weight rapidly, so it’s important to keep an eye on them.
If your cat loses weight gradually, he or she will receive the health benefits of a slimmer frame without putting internal organs at danger.
The equivalent for a 12-pound cat is a monthly consumption of 5.76 to 7.68 ounces.
There is only minimal evidence, including a 2002 research, suggesting L-carnitine can assist preserve the liver when dieting and weight reduction is being attempted.
Here’s something to think about.
It is not uncommon for domestic felines to hunt numerous times each day, with shorter periods of rest in between.
Many cat owners believe that their cat isn’t interested in playing, but in many cases, the time is just off.
You should start looking for food about ten to fifteen minutes before it’s time to dine.
Cats might get obsessed with food and neglect to play during the period between meals.
A victory is achieved if you can entice your cat to follow you around the house for 10 minutes while you carry their bowl.
According to your cat’s preferences, you may also assist them in their food-hunting activities.
Make certain areas harder to access in order to provide your cat with a challenge and keep him interested.
While you’re away at work or appointments, it might be a fun activity to keep your cat entertained while you’re away from the house.
Weight-loss diet modifications for your cat are available.
Although it is an effective weight-loss strategy, it is not the only one to consider.
It is also possible that switching from wet to raw can aid in weight loss for your feline companion.
Higher moisture levels in these diets have the advantage of protecting your cat from chronic dehydration, as well as the urinary stones and infections that are frequently associated with it.
It is raw food that is the most beneficial when weight loss is your primary objective.
Furthermore, if given enough time to acclimate, many cats may readily accept raw food.
Maintaining a little amount of weight reduction in your cat on a weekly basis can be difficult, and there are a few odd health concerns that might make it difficult for your cat to shed excess pounds.
Your veterinarian’s clinic will be able to assist you in troubleshooting any specific concerns that you may be experiencing with your pet.
- Increasing the quantity of activity your cat receives is recommended. Changing the manner in which you feed your cat
- Limiting the number of calories your cat consumes
What kind of exercise does my cat require? If you want your pet to reduce weight, you must play an active role in his or her exercise regimen. In order to progressively increase the quantity of exercise your cat receives if he or she is not used to it, you must first introduce it gently. Begin with exercising for 10 minutes three times a week, and gradually increase the amount of time you spend exercising until you are exercising for at least 30 minutes every day. If you exercise your cat for at least 15 minutes twice a day, it will help him or her burn more calories, boost his or her metabolic rate, and maintain his or her lean body mass.
- You may also use catnip to promote and improve your cat’s playtime by putting some in his food.
- What changes should I make to my feeding strategy?
- Given the additional effort required from you and your family, this will assist you in avoiding overeating.
- Ideally, your cat should eat two or more modest meals throughout the day to keep hunger and begging to a minimum and decrease stress.
- The first step in lowering energy consumption is to reduce the amount of snacks and/or sweets consumed.
- If you do decide to provide treats, make sure to only give them to your pets in little amounts.
- The only rewards that should be offered are low-calorie snacks or catnip.
What portion of food should I give my cat?
The quantity of calories your cat consumes is determined by the amount of energy your pet requires each day as well as the amount of exercise he or she receives.
Is there a standard for diet pet foods?
Diet cat diets have a wide range of calorie limitation compared to one another.
This option may differ depending on whether or not your cat is suffering from any other medical conditions at the same time.
Caloric intake, as previously noted, is a vital component of successful weight loss efforts.
A typical problem, especially at the beginning of a weight-loss program, is constipation.
As a result, your cat is likely to experience hunger.
You may try to alleviate this problem by providing your cat with several little meals throughout the day.
Limited-calorie diets are intended to assist cats in losing weight without making them feel deprived of their favorite foods.
Can you tell me how long it will take my cat to attain his or her desired body weight?
Generally speaking, cats may safely shed around 1.5 percent of their body weight every week until they reach their ideal weight.
During this time, you are welcome to drop into the hospital to get your pet weighed.
Because obesity promotes a propensity to accumulating weight, it is likely that your cat will need to be fed a special diet to maintain his or her optimal body weight.
It is critical that you feed your pet the proper amount of food in order to keep him or her at his or her appropriate body weight. Is your cat’s weight or nutrition causing you concern? Do you have any questions? Please get in touch with us!
Easy Ways to Help Your Cat Lose Weight
Losing weight is difficult for all animals, two-legged and four-legged alike. Cats are particularly hard struck by this difficulty, with a staggering 59.5 percent of cats in the United States categorized as overweight or obese, the highest rate of any companion animal (as compared to 55.8 percent in dogs). 1 In all, an estimated 56 million cats (and 50 million dogs) are overweight or obese, according to estimates. What is the source of this concern? In part because, like in humans, obesity is connected with major health problems in cats as well.
- For two-legged and four-legged animals alike, losing weight is a difficult task. With a startling 59.5 percent of cats in the United States classed as overweight or obese, cats face a greater burden than other companion animals (as compared to 55.8 percent in dogs). 1 Overweight or obese cats (and dogs) account for an estimated 56 million cats (and 50 million dogs). For what reason is this a source of worry. Because obesity in cats is related with major health concerns, just as it is in people, Medical conditions connected with excessive weight include the following:
According to research, obese and overweight cats are three times more likely to acquire type 2 diabetes than their trimmer, normal-weight counterparts. Additionally, they have a shorter life span and do not engage in as much physical interaction with their owners. The good news is that there are some tried-and-true methods for assisting your cat in losing those excess pounds. So let’s get this party started!
1. Talk with Your Veterinarian about Your Cat’s Weight
According to research, obese and overweight cats are three times more likely to acquire type 2 diabetes than their trimmer, normal-weight counterparts. Additionally, they have a shorter life span and do not engage in as much physical interaction with their family. Fortunately, there are some tried and true methods for assisting your cat in losing weight. All right, let’s get this show going!
2. Pay Attention to How Much You’re Feeding Your Cat
This may be accomplished by purchasing a set of dry measuring cups that are particularly designed for your pet’s food. They’re affordable and simple to get by, as well. Alternatively, you may make feeding your cat even more accurate without spending a lot of money by investing in a little kitchen scale that allows you to weigh the amount of food you’re feeding him.
Use Your Pet Food Scoop Correctly
Most pet food scoops include thin lines on the inside that show where the cup measures (e.g. 1/4 cup, 1/2 cup, etc.) are located (see illustration). It is not necessary to use your scoop if it does not contain these lines; instead, use correct measuring cups. Avoid putting “just a little bit” extra food above the measuring lines by following the guidelines above. Those inconsequential sums pile up over time, particularly for smaller creatures under 25 lbs., such as cats. OXO Possessing Secure Holding Set of Plastic Measuring Cups Additionally, if you want to feed your cat by weight rather than volume, consider purchasing a portable and easy-to-clean digital pet food scale/scoop combination.
More information may be found in this post titled “How Much and How Often You Should Feed Your Cat.”
3. Consider What You’re Feeding Your Cat
Not only is how much you feed your cat crucial, but also what you feed him. Keep an eye out for “diet” kibble from commercial sources. They are frequently inflated with air. You may believe that you are providing sufficient nutrition for your cat, but they will continue to be hungry since the air does not provide any actual fullness. Furthermore, a cat who is constantly hungry might become aggressive and less tolerant of other pets and people. Who can blame them, after all? I’d feel a little “hangry” as well!
- In addition, make certain that the first three elements on the ingredient list are comprised of a high-quality protein source.
- The high water content and density make this a particularly satisfying meal.
- As a result, your cat may consume a significantly greater volume of food while still keeping under their daily calorie limit.
- Try mixing in a little amount of canned pumpkin into your cat’s diet.
Start with 1/8th teaspoon and work your way up to roughly a teaspoon each day over time. Make certain that it is pure pumpkin and not pumpkin pie filling. In order to ensure that nothing goes to waste in the fridge, you may divide out portions in an ice cube tray and freeze them.
4. Weigh Your Cat Regularly
When your pet’s weight is recorded, it may be a reliable predictor of his or her overall health. Pet owners who track their pet’s weight on a regular basis, rather of simply during yearly check-ups, are more likely to notice tiny variations in weight that could otherwise be overlooked. As a result of their tiny stature, which makes gradual weight loss or increase more difficult to detect in cats, this is especially crucial for them. Consider the following for an average 10-pound cat: If you lose only 6 percent of your body weight, or less than 10 ounces, it might be an indication of a medical concern if it occurs over a short period of time (less than a week).
A few pounds of weight increase may go unnoticed for a short period of time, but over time, those few pounds begin to accumulate.
How to Weigh Your Cat
Being weighed is something that many cats (as well as dogs and people) despise doing. Here are a few pointers on how to determine your cat’s weight at home:
- Being weighed is something that many cats (as well as dogs and people) dislike. To determine your cat’s weight at home, consider the following suggestions:
Many cats (as well as dogs and people) despise the experience of being weighed. Here are a few pointers for determining your cat’s weight at home:
5. Monitor Your Cat’s Treat Intake
Treats may be a source of happiness for cats, just as they can be for dogs. And there are a plethora of options available, making it tough to make the best decision for your cat’s overall health. We recommend that you read our article “Choosing the Best Cat Treats,” which has some helpful advice. Most cat treats, in contrast to commercially produced cat diets, are not nutritionally full and balanced. Due to the fact that the amount of carbohydrate required to manufacture a crispy cat treat is typically too high for cats, this is the case.
Cats that consume an excessive amount of treats not only become overweight and fat, but they can also have a negative influence on their nutritional balance and appetite for their normal meal.
Ensure that the sweets you choose are healthful and that they haven’t been seasoned with salt, preservatives, or artificial coloring.
6. Increase Physical Exercise for Your Cat
Increase the amount of everyday activity your cat receives. For cats, this frequently manifests itself in the form of interactive play with their human companion. As well as letting your cat express their hunting instincts, offering mental and physical stimulation, and strengthening the link between the two of you, this activity burns calories while also enriching their lives. The sessions do not have to be particularly long, but they should be predictable in their duration (for example, daily at about the same time).
- It imitates the motion of a bird in flight.
- This toy fosters natural behaviors and physical activity, which will help to keep your cat healthy and active.
- When cats are playing with toys that look like birds, they can improve their hearing by engaging their sense of hearing.
- Original Feather Wand Toy by Da Bird If your cat enjoys chasing after objects, you may take a bit of their regular kibble and use it to engage in a small game with them.
- This is an excellent method of getting them to move.
- It is important to remember that the usage of laser pointers may result in frustration if the cat is unable to capture the prey (that is, the light from the laser).
- There is a deadline for them to complete the search and catch process.
- This is another excellent source of exercise, provided that it is done in a safe manner.
- Please keep in mind that, just as humans can’t go out and run a marathon without first preparing our body, our pets can’t do the same.
When it comes to obese or geriatric pets, as well as those who have health difficulties, going slowly is very crucial. Consult with your veterinarian to determine the most effective manner to begin and maintain an exercise regimen. The race is won by those who go slowly and steadily.
7. Use Slow-Feeders, Interactive Food Puzzles, or Hide and Seek
Slowing down the rate at which your pet consumes his or her food will encourage him or her to stop when he or she is satisfied, rather than devouring their meal regardless of whether or not they are hungry. This may be accomplished by substituting a puzzle or interactive object for the traditional bowl of food on the table. Another method of slowing down their eating is to add some water to their meal before serving it to them. More information may be found in the article, “The Best Cat Food Bowls and Interactive Feeders to Delight Your Kitty,” which can be found here.
Under the sofa, on the dining room chair, under a cushion — all of these places provide opportunities for your cat to utilize their noses and go searching.
Dry Food Feeders That Cats Can Push, Chase, and Hunt
Make your pet’s eating more leisurely in order to encourage him or her to stop when he or she is satisfied rather than devouring their meal regardless of whether or not they are hungry. This may be accomplished by substituting a puzzle or interactive item for the traditional dish of food. You may also use water to help them eat more slowly by putting it in their meal. More information may be found in the article, “The Best Cat Food Bowls and Interactive Feeders to Delight Your Kitty,” which includes a video demonstration.
The places where your cat may use their noses to search, such as under the sofa, on the dining room chair, or under a cushion, are all great places for them to do so.
Feeders That Also Work with Wet Cat Food
Get ahold of the Interactive Pet Feeder. Catit Digger Cat Food Puzzle Catit Digger Cat Food Puzzle
8. Monitor for Medical Problems that Contribute to Cat Weight Gain
Consult with your veterinarian to determine whether your cat has a medical issue that might be contributing to his or her excessive weight gain (such as a low-functioning thyroid, overactive adrenal gland, a buildup of fluid, or one of any other number of possible underlying conditions). If your cat has been given the all-clear, talk to them about a safe and successful weight-loss strategy that they may follow. In order to be safe and successful, weight reduction in pets should be gradual and continuous.
9. Don’t Free Feed Your Cat
When feeding your cat, remember that even if he or she is a “grazer” (meaning that they do not consume all of their food at once but rather eat slowly throughout the day), you must properly measure out their food to ensure that they receive proper nutrition and the appropriate amount of calories each day. Make sure you aren’t just filling their bowl at random. Pet obesity and overweight are on the rise, and free feeding makes it much more harder to detect early indications of discomfort and other issues.
For additional information on this subject, please see our article “Think Twice Before Allowing Your Dog or Cat to Free Feed.” Additionally, leaving food out is not a good idea.
It is possible for the food to become stale, causing your pet to become unwilling to consume it. Alternatively, if it becomes damp, it can mildew, which can make your cat sick if they consume it.
How to Manage Your Cat’s Calorie Reduction
There are prescription diets that your veterinarian may offer to help your pet feel fuller on less food, reducing the likelihood that they will become agitated and beg. Always remember that you should never abruptly modify your cat’s food. Instead, transition from the old diet to the new diet gradually over a period of 1–2 weeks, sometimes even up to 3 weeks, starting with the old diet and ending with the new diet. More information on how to change your cat’s food may be found here.
How Quickly Should I Cut Back My Cat’s Food?
If your veterinarian suggests a prescription diet to help your pet feel more satisfied on less food, they will be less likely to become irritated and seek for more food. Never, ever modify your cat’s nutrition on a whim or out of nowhere. Don’t do it all at once; rather, transition from one diet to another gradually over a period of 1–2 weeks, occasionally even 3 weeks. More information about changing your cat’s food may be found here.
What Rate of Weight Loss is Ideal for Cats?
Your cat can safely lose 0.5–2 percent of their body weight every week, depending on their age and breed. In the case of a 20-pound cat, it is possible for them to shed 0.2–0.4 pounds (or around 4 ounces) every week. It is OK to drop less than that amount every week; but, your weight reduction strategy will take longer to complete. Depending on how much weight reduction is required, you should anticipate your cat to attain their optimal body weight in 6–8 months, depending on how much weight loss is required.
Your veterinarian can assist you in determining the amount of weight that they can and should shed in a given month.
This process of weight loss and control for your cat is best handled by your veterinarian, who can answer any questions you have and lead you through this process.
Simple Ways to Help Your Cat Lose Weight
If your cat’s physician has informed you that your feline companion is far heavier than they should be, you are not alone in your concerns. According to the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention, around 60 percent of cats in the United States were classed as overweight as recently as 2018. And it isn’t simply a concern for domestic cats in the United States: According to International Cat Care, between 39 and 52 percent of cats in the United Kingdom are overweight. But, how can one go about assisting a cat in losing weight?
Follow these instructions as you embark on your path to assist your cat in losing weight.
Is My Cat Overweight?
If you’re not sure whether or not your cat is overweight, there’s a quick and easy technique to determine their weight at home – and you won’t even need a scale! The Body Condition Score, a three-step approach recommended by the Cornell Feline Health Center, is as follows:
- In the event that you’re unsure whether or not your cat is overweight, there’s a quick and easy approach to determine their weight at home – and you won’t require a scale! A three-step approach, the Body Condition Score, is recommended by the Cornell Feline Health Center.
Your cat is likely overweight if you are unable to feel the ribs or see the waistline of the animal.
Taking your cat to the veterinarian for an overall health check and to rule out any underlying causes of the weight increase is the best way to determine whether or not your cat is overweight and to determine their optimal weight.
How to Help a Cat Lose Weight
You and your cat’s veterinarian must work together to develop a nutrition and activity plan for your feline companion once you’ve determined that your cat is overweight. “Eat better, play more,” is a wonderful slogan to follow when it comes to your cat’s weight loss regimen.
Choosing the Right Food for Weight Loss
You and your cat’s veterinarian must work together to develop a nutrition and activity plan for your feline companion once you’ve determined that your cat has become overweight. “Eat better, play more,” is a fantastic slogan to live by when it comes to losing weight with your cat.
How ExerciseFitness Can Help
Even though cats are normally sedentary creatures, be sure to keep them active during the hours they are awake! The consumption of nutritious food is only one component in weight reduction. Consider yourself to be the personal trainer for your cat. Toss a tiny toy around for them to pursue, or make a cat scratching post out of scrap wood. Even a wadded-up sheet of paper will provide hours of entertainment for your little hunter. Activities should be varied to keep kids interested. Trying to find a way to include exercise into your cat’s eating schedule?
Your cat will have to work to get their food out of these special bowls, which will help them burn off some of those excess calories.
Preventing Your Cat From Packing on Pounds
According to the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention, a 10-pound cat should consume between 180 and 200 calories per day on average. It is crucial to discuss your cat’s specific needs with your veterinarian in order to receive a customised advice. Generally speaking, a healthy pace of weight reduction is one-half to two percent of body weight each week, but your veterinarian will be the most knowledgeable about setting particular objectives. Establishing a consistent feeding regimen for your cat is also essential for helping him maintain his weight loss.
Observe their feeding patterns to establish the optimum meal practices for your cat in order to assist them in reaching their ideal weight loss.
After all, maintaining a healthy weight helps kids to be more active and play more, resulting in an overall higher quality of life for them.
How To Help Your Obese Cat Lose Weight – IAMS®
This post is part of a series on how to recognize the indications of a healthy cat in your home or yard. More information on the important signs may be found here. An fat cat is not a pleasant sight to behold. They are clunky and cumbersome, and as a result, their athletic skills and attractiveness suffer significantly. Because of their reduced flexibility, they are unable to properly groom themselves, which might result in skin issues. Obese cats are also at higher risk for diabetes, and they make poor surgical and anesthetic candidates because of their increased body mass.
Obesity occurs when an animal consumes more calories than they require on a constant basis. Overfeeding, inactivity, reproductive status, environment, body type, age, and heredity are all factors that might contribute to this condition.
Is Your Cat Obese?
The assessment of your cat’s body condition is vital in the overall evaluation of his nutritional well-being and can assist in evaluating whether or not your cat is obese. Simply follow the simple instructions in theCat Body Condition Chart to determine the overall health of your cat’s body. First and foremost, if you feel your cat is fat, you should contact with your veterinarian.
How to Help Your Cat Lose Weight
It is likely that your veterinarian may ask you a few questions about your cat, such as how much food they consume and how much physical exercise they receive. Answering these questions truthfully will assist your veterinarian in recommending some easy modifications that will aid in the reduction of your cat’s overall weight. In addition, your veterinarian may undertake tests to uncover medical disorders that may contribute to obesity in cats; you should rule out any such diseases before putting your cat on any type of weight-management regimen.
2. Reduce the Amount You Feed Your Cat
Your veterinarian may initially recommend that you reduce the amount of food you give your cat. If this is the case, start by lowering the daily serving size by 25%. Continue to reduce consumption by 10 percent increments every two to three weeks until your cat loses 1 percent of their starting weight, at which point you should stop. For example, if your cat weighs 15 pounds, a one-percent weight decrease would equal 212 ounces in weight. Try dividing the daily allotment into multiple little meals (at least two meals each day) and picking up what your cat doesn’t eat 30 minutes after each meal if you give one large meal a day or have food available at all times.
3. Start Your Cat on a Weight-management Diet
A reduction in the amount of food you give your cat may be recommended by your veterinarian. If this is the case, start by lowering the daily portion by 25%. Consumption should be reduced in 10-percent increments every two to three weeks until your cat loses one-tenth of their initial weight. For example, if your cat weighs 15 pounds, a one-percent weight reduction would be 212 ounces in weight loss. You should try to divide the daily ration into multiple little meals (at least two meals per day) and pick up any leftovers 30 minutes after each meal if you feed one major meal per day or have food available at all times.
4. Change Your Cat’s Diet Gradually
Changing diets may be unpleasant for pets, so if your veterinarian suggests that you change your pet’s food, take it easy and be patient. Start with a daily amount that contains 25 percent of the new food and 75 percent of the old meal to get you used to it. After that, raise the amount of fresh food by 50% while decreasing the amount of old food by 50% on the next day. During the following few days, gradually increase the proportions of new food while reducing the proportions of old food until the food is totally composed of the new diet is reached.
5. Encourage Your Cat to Play
Increasing your cat’s activity level is another approach to assist them in losing weight. Provide your cat with climbing structures, or train him or her to play fetch or walk on a leash. Purchase or make your own toys that stimulate physical activity. One creative cat owner throws her cat’s dry food ration across the room, piece by piece. You may also make advantage of your cat’s natural hunting urge to aid in their weight loss efforts. Keep a few tiny parts of their daily food allotment hidden in various locations about the house.
Make use of your creativity, but proceed with caution.
Consider the fact that an elderly cat may not be able to engage in strenuous physical activity.
If you can’t stand the sight of a rotund cat begging for food at the dinner table, confine them to another room at mealtime.
The winner of the food competition sweepstakes in a multi-cat home is frequently fat, especially if the family has many cats. If this is the case, try to keep the cats apart during mealtimes if at all feasible.
6. Practice Patience
The prevention of obesity outweighs the treatment, but it is never too late to reverse it — but it will take time and dedication over the long term to achieve this goal. Getting cats to lose weight is a long and drawn-out procedure. If the amount of food they consume is substantially reduced, the cat is at danger of developing additional health problems. Increased physical activity, behavior modification (for both you and your cat), and calorie restriction are the most effective methods of assisting an obese cat to shed pounds.
For an obese cat to drop 15 percent of their initial weight, it will take at least four months of dedicated effort.
Tips for Starting a Weight-management Program for Your Cat
- The prevention of obesity outweighs the treatment, but it is never too late to reverse it — but it will take time and dedication over the long term to do it successfully. It takes time to assist cats in losing weight. Other health concerns in the cat might result from substantially restricting their food intake. Increased physical activity, behavior modification (for both you and your cat), and calorie restriction are the most effective methods of assisting an obese cat to lose weight on their own. It is necessary to anticipate a few setbacks and plateaus along the way, though. For an obese cat to drop 15 percent of their initial weight, it will take at least four months of effort. Consider taking another look at your cat’s overall health and proceeding from there.