Overweight cats tend to live shorter and are more vulnerable to health issues than their slimmer counterparts, making weight loss essential to improving both their quality of life and lifespan. Helping overweight cats shed a few pounds can dramatically improve both health and lifespan.
Your veterinarian can assist in designing an appropriate weight loss program for your pet. Be careful not to drastically cut back their food, as this could cause hepatic lipidosis.
Reduce the Calorie Intake
Your cat must eat less than they burn to shed pounds, and one effective way to achieve this goal is by decreasing their daily food consumption while simultaneously increasing activity levels. Your vet can assist in helping determine how much less of their usual diet you need to provide them; generally speaking, high-protein, low-carbohydrate diets work well because they help preserve muscle mass while restricting energy sources that cause fat loss.
Make smaller meals available to your cat to reduce its calorie consumption, helping make their stomachs feel full and reduce intake. When giving smaller meals to your feline companion, use a measuring cup or kitchen scale so you can be more precise in measuring out portions. Also weigh your feline regularly as weight loss programs sometimes reach plateaus; consult with your veterinarian regarding further reduction of their caloric intake if that would improve results.
Limit or eliminate table scraps and treats that contain extra calories that could prevent your cat from reaching weight loss. Also encourage more physical exercise with your cat by playing together on a daily basis; not only will this help them burn calories more efficiently but it’ll strengthen both bonds between both of you. Ensure to vary up the games played so your feline friend doesn’t become bored with one-sided activities!
How to Make Cat Lose Weight Increasing Activity
If you suspect your cat may be overweight, make an appointment to visit their veterinarian and have them weigh them. They can give an accurate reading on what weight should be normal while helping devise an action plan to get him or her back into shape.
One thing that you can do to assess your cat is run your hands along their ribcage and feel for signs of fat or boniness. Additionally, check their profile and see if there is anything squished in their middle or has an abdominal bulge protrusion that protrudes outward from their body.
Another way of telling is by regularly weighing them and comparing this weight against what was their initial adult cat weight; this serves as the baseline of their health. If they seem to be getting heavier, you can begin making changes that encourage movement by providing your kitty with more opportunities to move around more frequently.
Indoor cats don’t get as many opportunities for physical exercise as their outdoor counterparts do, but there are still ways you can boost their activity levels. Cats are designed to prowl around, so providing climbing surfaces and vertical spaces in your home will encourage prowling behavior. Offering toys they can chase after and bat around also help. Ruth uses a food puzzle feeder with treats hidden throughout to keep her Bengal-cross male cats active and engaged.
There may be medical conditions which prevent cats from exercising regularly, but a veterinarian can help you identify whether and how much activity will benefit your cat. They will work with you to develop a plan to gradually increase their activity level over time and prescribe diets high in meat proteins which will keep your kitty feeling satisfied for longer.
Exercise Your Cat
If your cat is overweight, exercise will help them burn calories and speed up their metabolism. Play with them daily or give them toys that require movement for maximum calorie burn. Make mealtime an exercise session by hiding food behind obstacles around the house and using puzzle feeders which require motion for dispensing food – this will not only get them moving but will also slow treat intake by forcing them to work for it!
Be mindful that if your cat is used to being sedentary or is new to exercise, the level of activity must gradually increase over time in order to prevent their becoming discouraged and abandoning the program. Doing this will prevent a future drop-out.
Reducing weight and improving body condition for cats takes time and dedication, but is achievable. Speak with your veterinarian about making a plan to maintain an ideal weight or help them shed excess pounds. They’ll be able to assist in avoiding rapid weight loss triggers (hepatic lipidosis), while providing guidance that ensures their diet meets all their nutritional needs so they feel satisfied while eating less food.
Care should be taken not to drastically change your cat’s diet or amount of exercise as sudden shifts could trigger hepatic lipidosis. Instead, gradually transition your current diet to its replacement over a few weeks so your cat has time to adapt. Furthermore, check with your veterinarian about L-Carnitine supplements which could assist cats as they lose weight as it helps convert fat cells into energy sources.
Reduce the Treat Intake
Reduce their caloric intake: the best way to help a cat lose weight is to cut back on how many calories they ingest, such as cutting back on treats (avoid feeding table scraps as these contain extra calories) and replacing them with physical activity like playing and using toys that stimulate movement – such as puzzle feeders that make cats work for their food!
Limiting meals can help aid weight loss in cats. But remember not to abruptly restrict how much they’re fed; gradually lower portion sizes until your cat reaches their ideal weight and then continue. Your veterinarian can assist in helping determine their ideal body condition and the daily caloric requirements needed to reach that point safely.
Your vet can also offer guidance in choosing an ideal diet for your pet. They typically suggest canned food as it has lower calories than dry, more filler to satisfy cats’ hunger pangs and contains moderate fat levels that satiate. They may even suggest premium quality brand canned food designed to assist weight management to speed up weight loss. Over-the-counter diets that claim weight management often don’t contain enough filler and may leave your cat always wanting more food!
Make sure your cat does not share its food with other pets; doing so could cause them to overeat as they compete for resources that should only belong to one cat. Separating them at feeding time and then releasing them afterward for play or cuddling can help make sure their health.
Change the Diet
If you and your vet have made a plan to help your cat lose weight, make sure you stick to it. Each cat is individual and may require different strategies; therefore adjusting food or routine too frequently could prove counterproductive. If your kitty has not made significant progress within one week, consult with your veterinarian about additional ways to increase weight loss.
Ensure your cat doesn’t experience a nutritional deficit by gradually increasing their daily food intake. Canned food typically provides less calories per ounce and will help your kitty feel full more quickly than dry food does, or introduce toys such as puzzle feeders to stimulate play while providing additional exercise opportunities. In the wild, cats spend much of their day searching and hunting for sustenance; eating several small servings of canned food throughout the day mimics this behavior and makes your feline happy and contented!
If the cost of adding more canned food to your pet’s diet or providing multiple canned feedings daily is a worry, there may be alternatives available such as prescription weight management diets that provide more protein while being lower in calories. When switching diets it is important to gradually introduce the new food by switching out some portion of their current food for seven days until transition is complete.