Obesity in Cats: Everything You Need to Know

Obesity and obesity are a major problem for cats in the Western world. It is estimated that up to half of the cats are overweight.

Just as in humans, obesity can give rise to welfare diseases and shorten the life of the animal. Obesity in cats carries an increased risk of diabetes, joint problems, skin conditions, weakening of the immune system and puts an increased strain on both internal organs and bones. Unfortunately, obesity is also part of a vicious circle, as it leads to a reduced tendency to exercise and thus a reduced need for energy, which in turn contributes to increasing obesity.

There are diseases that reduce metabolism, but this is rarely the cause of obesity. As a rule, the reason is simply too much food and too little exercise. Neutered animals have about 20% lower energy needs. Things that affect the activity level of the animal, such as old age or joint pain, also increase the risk of being overweight.

If your cat is overweight, it should be examined by a veterinarian to determine if there may be an underlying cause of the obesity. The veterinarian can also tell you how much the cat should lose weight, how this should be done and how long it should take.

Remember that light food is not intended for dieting but to maintain the weight of cats that are easy to put on the hole. To make your animal lose weight, you need to give special diet foods and be very careful with the portion size. Veterinary staff can help recommend suitable feed and calculate portion size. Many clinics also offer weight loss programs, with regular weighing.

You should cut down on all pieces of candy and snacks. Diet food has a high fiber content, which gives a feeling of satiety while keeping blood sugar at a steady level throughout the day. Due to the increased amount of fiber, some people experience that the cat receives a larger amount of faeces.

Many people think that it can be difficult to resist their pet’s pleading gaze, but you should keep in mind that it is not just hunger that makes the cat beg for food. Some animals are very fond of food or eat out of old habit. When the cat is begging, go for an extra walk or play with it, and you may find that this is at least as good a reward for them as a treat or extra meal.

Dogs are usually easier to exercise than cats, but there are tricks to use to help the cat with the metabolism. Playing with a ball, toy on a string, laser pointer, etc. can speed up the cat. It can also help to give it climbing opportunities, or set the food bowl high, so that the cat has to jump or climb to get the calories.

Feel free to consult with your veterinarian or veterinary nurse for advice. It can be patient to lose weight with your pet, especially a cat. But you have everything to gain in the form of positive effects for health and a higher quality of life as the animal gets in shape.

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