Cat Health Issues – Are We Making Our Cats Fat?

Cat Health Issues – Overweight and obese cats are becoming one of the most important cat health issues.  Dogs fall into this category also.

An overweight condition causes less agility and more difficulty in the movement of the pet.  But even more important, it will cause severe health problems long term. 

This post addresses the problem associated with overweight cats.  It is very important that overweight cats are restricted to a healthy diet.  But exercise plays an important role as well.

It seems to be much easier for us to get our dogs to exercise.  For example, my dog, Romeo, and I walk 2-4 miles every day.  In Romeo’s case, he loves to walk.  He stays very trim and prides himself in a slender physique.

It’s just easier to put a harness on our dog and take the little guy out for a walk.  Just like humans, we must gradually ease into any type of exercise program with dogs.

On the other hand, it is more difficult to engage our cats in an exercise program.  For those that are overweight and lazy, it is even more of a problem.  But any type of physical exercise is beneficial.  As the cat begins to lose weight, it will have more energy and have a greater desire for physical activity.

Probably most owners of overweight cats realize that they, and not their cats, are the problem.  We must absolutely restrict the amount of food the cat is eating.

For those cats that don’t have a weight problem, the owner must make sure that your little furry friend eats no more than the feeding instructions on the package.  Physical activity should be encouraged.

You should be able to feel a thin layer of skin over the cat’s ribs.  If you don’t feel the ribs, you must cut back on the food you are feeding.  All animals are different.  In many cases, feeding your cat according to the instructions on the package is too much.  If so, then cut back.

For cats that are overweight, you have no choice.  You must cut back on the food the cat is eating.  My suggestion is to consult with your veterinarian.  You will receive expert consultation on dealing with your cat’s health issue.

The doctor may prescribe supplements that suppress the cat’s appetite.  In general, I don’t care for any type of chemicals or drugs being added to the body.  But I would follow the advice of your vet in this situation.

I recently read an article on this topic.  It’s entitled, “Growing problem: Number of tubby tabbies, plump pooches increasing.”  The author is Emily Christensen of the Waterloo Courier.  Here is a quote from a portion of the article. 

“The bottom line with our annual surveys is that pets are battling excess weight just as their owners are,” Ward said in a prepared release.

Local veterinarians said they, too, are seeing an increase in the number of overweight and obese animals they treat.

“It’s not any certain breed and we see it equally as much in cats as in dogs, but we are definitely seeing more,” said veterinarian Tammy Stevenson of Advanced Pet Care Clinic in Cedar Falls. “We do see it more in spayed and neutered animals because their metabolism drops after the surgery. and if their owners don’t modify their diet they will start seeing an almost immediate weight gain.”

The extra pounds also can mean additional medical troubles for animals. Diabetes can be a serious problem in cats that have been obese for several years, Broshar said.

“It’s common but completely preventable,” she said.

The entire article can be read here.

Do you have any questions or comments on the topic?  The issue is becoming more and more prevalent.  Thanks for your input.

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