How to Put a Cat on a Diet

Kaitlyn’s 4-year-old daughter named their cat “Mr. Pig.” The kid found it hilarious that the feline would eat whenever he wants and as a result has grown so big. Kaitlyn doesn’t think Mr. Pig’s weight is healthy any longer. A cat shouldn’t really weigh as much as a small dog, should it? She thinks a change is in order.

But how to put a cat on a diet?

how to put a cat on a diet

Kaitlyn’s pet isn’t unlike many household pets in the country. Many of them pretty much eat whenever and rarely see the inside of a vet’s clinic. That’s unfortunate because even if a cat is just a pound over his ideal weight, he can already be in big trouble. This is because overweight cats are more at risk of developing diseases like osteoarthritis, type 2 diabetes, respiratory problems and non-allergic skin conditions.

But how can you tell if your cat is indeed fat and not just built that way?

Well, an average cat weighs anywhere between 8 and 10 pounds. If you can’t put him on a weighing scale, though, you can try the following to determine if he’s packing on the excess pounds.

1) Squeeze the sides of your cat’s rib cage. Needless to say, you have to be gentle about it. If you can easily feel the ribs, congratulations, your cat isn’t overweight. But if you had to press to get at the ribs, then he might be heavier than he ought to be.

2) Check your cat’s waistline. Ideally, his body should be more slender going from belly to hindquarters.

3) Look between the cat’s hind legs. If you see a swinging pouch, then yes, kitty is overweight.

Or really, just listen when he jumps off any furniture. If there’s a thud whenever he lands, then it might be time to figure out how to put your cat on a diet.

How to get your kitty to slim down?

The simple answer is to limit the calories that your cat is getting. A 10-pound indoor cat only needs around 200 calories every day according to the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention.

Here’s how you can get this done:

•Measure out the food. What you want to do is divide the targeted caloric intake into 4 – 6 small meals.
•Keep the water bowl full.
•Leave out cat food only for a limited time.
•Avoid giving treats. If you must, however, give dry food as substitute.
•Do not share food with your cat. Not only is human food fattening, it may give your cat diarrhea.
•Do not let your cat eat dog food.

It would also be beneficial to check with a vet so you can set a clear and healthy weight goal for your pet cat.

The new diet must be implemented slowly. You don’t want your cat to suddenly stop eating because the food is different. To ensure you’re not overdoing it, keep in mind that your cat can only lose a pound a month if you want him to stay healthy.

slim kitty cat

A slimmer cat isn’t only a happier cat. He’s also a longer-lived one. So do your cat a favor and check if he’s overweight. Then take steps to rectify the situation.

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Jul 2014

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