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Feline obesity treatments for cats can range from medication and lifestyle changes. Learn how to keep your cat's weight down at home.
All cats love treats, but as their size and age increase, their tolerance for treats decreases. Obesity is the number one health problem in cats and is often overlooked. In fact, 15 percent of cats older than 10 are overweight.
Not surprisingly, obesity has serious health implications, causing a whole host of conditions, including diabetes, heart disease, arthritis, blindness and kidney disease. Research is beginning to reveal the root cause of this widespread health problem — the belly.
While we can't do anything about what a cat eats, it is important that the food you feed your cat is healthy and nutritious. In addition, the litter box and food bowl should be clean and uncluttered, which will make it easier to get to and pick up food. Finally, when you give your cat his medication, make sure you give it in small quantities so that your cat isn't able to play with the tablets and chew them up. You can also give him treats in small doses to serve as a reward for good behavior.
Obesity is most often caused by a combination of inactivity and eating more calories than a cat can burn in a day. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), one of the primary contributors to excessive weight gain in cats is lack of physical activity. Although we can't control a cat's exercise, we can play with them or walk them, and we can encourage them to go outside and play or be more active. Caring for a large cat that is overweight can be a very rewarding and enjoyable experience.
Pet obesity becomes a major health problem as cats get older. According to the AVMA, obesity and overweight have reached epidemic proportions in cats. The organization reports that about 12 percent of older cats are obese and a similar percentage of younger cats are overweight. The AVMA attributes this trend to cats eating more and living longer. In fact, the human population is also experiencing a rise in overweight and obese people, which may have contributed to the rise in feline obesity.
The number of overweight cats will continue to rise as the feline population increases. The AVMA estimates that, by 2030, about 60 percent of American households with a cat will have a large cat.
If you've got a large, or "fat" cat, we know that feeding them treats is a very rewarding experience for them, as well as for you. We've even got a guide on our website that can help you figure out the most efficient and nutritious way to feed your large cat.
Ways to Prevent Cat Obesity
As we age, our joints and skin deteriorate, which means our bodies don't move as easily. This makes it difficult for our cats to get around and stay fit. When a large cat spends lots of time sleeping and resting, it has less time to burn calories. To help a cat become more active and less sedentary, make sure that your cat has access to a variety of toys to play with. This can help them get moving and keep them interested in play.
If your cat is overweight, you'll want to keep his weight in check by encouraging him to get plenty of exercise. Because cats have a much higher metabolic rate than dogs, they need to burn more calories to maintain their weight.
Providing a balanced diet and giving them enough to eat every day will help to keep their weight in check. As a general rule of thumb, cats should eat at least 30 percent of their body weight in dry food each day. This will help to keep them in a healthy weight range.
Cats should have a certain amount of fat in their diet to keep their joints healthy. According to the AVMA, as a cat's age increases, so does the risk of developing arthritis. Arthritis in older cats can be controlled by adding a small amount of cooked chicken or turkey fat to the diet to help your cat's joints stay healthy. Remember that a cat's diet should be tailored to its specific needs.
Obesity in Cats: Health Issues
As your cat ages, his body might be more vulnerable to certain health issues, such as diabetes. Cats naturally develop diabetes at a younger age than humans. Unlike in people, feline diabetes is rarely due to being overweight. This means that, even though overweight cats have a higher risk of developing diabetes, this disease occurs because your cat isn't moving enough or has poor diet and is not metabolically obese.
Because diabetes in cats is most often a result of a lack of activity and a poor diet, you'll want to keep your cat as fit and healthy as possible.If you're concerned about your cat's weight, we've got great resources to help you with that as well. Read on to learn how to help your cat stay healthy and fit.
Diabetes in older cats has a much higher risk of developing complications, including blindness and kidney disease. Older cats also have a higher incidence of heart disease and arthritis. If your cat develops any of these diseases, they will likely have a shorter lifespan.
Your cat will also have a higher risk of obesity-related conditions if she is diagnosed with diabetes. Because diabetes is associated with a large number of chronic conditions, most older cats with diabetes are already overweight. This makes it more difficult to lose weight and get down to a healthy weight.
If your cat has diabetes, it's important that she doesn't develop any other serious medical conditions. In addition to diabetes, cats can develop cancer, kidney disease, cardiovascular disease and end-stage renal disease.
Feline Obesity &, Cats
Despite popular belief, cats don't naturally overeat. Like dogs, their metabolism slows with age, and many cats can be finicky eaters. In order to reduce weight, cats often eat less. Because cats have a high metabolic rate, they can burn hundreds of calories an hour. As a general rule of thumb, most cats need to eat around 30 percent of their weight in dry food a day to stay in a healthy weight range.
If your cat is overweight, you'll want to help him lose some weight. As mentioned