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Help Controlling Overweight Cat Appetite

MikeAW2010

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Apr 25, 2018
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I have two cats that are about 4 - 5 lbs overweight. I need to try to reduce their weight but when I ration their food they become super anxious and try to eat other cats food. I have seperated them during feeding sessions and make sure they dont steal food. That isn't the only problem however. One of them gets super anxious and basically will not let me sleep unless I put him in the kennel.

Is there anything I can feed him to make him 'feel' full that won't increase his weight? I've been told that pumpkin puree would allow for this?
 

LTS3

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What are you currently feeding the cats? Dry food or canned / wet food? Canned food is best to help keep tummies happy and help a cat lose weight.

The general rule of thumb is to feed the appropriate amount of calories daily, which is roughly 20 to 25 calories per ideal body weight. A 10 lb cat may need around 200 calories or so. Adjust for each individual cat and their needs.

Cats who don't get enough calories daily will steal food any way they can because they are starving. Rationing food doesn't work for cats and may lead to fatty liver disease.

Feline Obesity: An Epidemic of Fat Cats
 

mrsgreenjeens

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Yes, cats who are hungry will do pretty much anything to eat, includng waking you up at all hours of the night. And, yes, pumpkin puree can help, at least that's what our Vet advised us when we were feeding ours the very lowest caloric intake possible and he still wasn't losing, but we couldn't cut down any further. She advised we add some canned pumpkin puree to his food. Unfortunately he didn't like it, so we just plugged along and increased his activity by tossing all his treats to him (remember when counting their calories that you must count treats as well!)

Feeding wet food was the only way we ever got our pudge to lose weight. Scheduled meals plus switching to an all wet diet and religiously counting calories. Exercising certainly helps, and if you have couch potato cats, you can even start with walking around with their food dish in hand and have them follow you around, letting them take a bite every now and again. of course, a healthy dose of play gets them exercise, but often overweight cats aren't really into play and really moving, jumping, etc. But it will come once the weight starts to come off.

BTW, I STILL feed mine in separate rooms because my (former) pudge still walks over to his brothers bowl and if he thinks he might like what's in there, might try to help himself. It's been years since he lost the weight he needed to lose, but the desire to overeat must stay with them their entire lifetime :frown:. I have to watch him like a hawk :wink:
 
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MikeAW2010

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I should have noted, between kittenhood to about 6 years of age he was on mostly dry food with wet here and there, that was before I knew about how bad dry food was for cats. They're now 8 years of age and for the last 2 years they've been eating only wet food, that plus I've only been feeding home-made raw food for about a year now -- (occasionally mixed with friskies if I dont have enough). They almost never get dry food anymore unless there's absolutely no choice.
 

mrsgreenjeens

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OK, that's good information. I actually feed my (former) pudge raw, and that's how I got him to lose weight. But raw should really help them feel full. You said you are giving them homemade raw. Are you following an established recipe? Perhaps you should try to switch up the protein to something less caloric? Lamb is pretty fatty, whereas rabbit is pretty lean, if you get my meaning. Same with chicken thighs vs chicken breasts. That's the only thing I can think of :headscratch: And since they aren't losing weight, how did you figure out the amount to give them. It's been so long since I needed to figure out HOW to determine the amount I can't quite remember the formula, but there is one, that I know. AND, our Vet really did recommend adding the pumpkin puree to his raw food since we were already feeding him the bare minimum percentage wise of what he should eat. You know, since you are feeding raw (yes, occasionally mixed with wet), perhaps you should pose your question in the Raw Forum, which is located here: Raw & Home-Cooked Cat Food
 
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MikeAW2010

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OK, that's good information. I actually feed my (former) pudge raw, and that's how I got him to lose weight. But raw should really help them feel full. You said you are giving them homemade raw. Are you following an established recipe? Perhaps you should try to switch up the protein to something less caloric? Lamb is pretty fatty, whereas rabbit is pretty lean, if you get my meaning. Same with chicken thighs vs chicken breasts. That's the only thing I can think of :headscratch: And since they aren't losing weight, how did you figure out the amount to give them. It's been so long since I needed to figure out HOW to determine the amount I can't quite remember the formula, but there is one, that I know. AND, our Vet really did recommend adding the pumpkin puree to his raw food since we were already feeding him the bare minimum percentage wise of what he should eat. You know, since you are feeding raw (yes, occasionally mixed with wet), perhaps you should pose your question in the Raw Forum, which is located here: Raw & Home-Cooked Cat Food
Noted and thanks.

Just wondering, does pumpkin puree help them lose weight or does it just help them feel full while not adding to their weight? How much pumpkin puree should I feed them?
 

MissClouseau

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I think this also depends on the cat. Mine for example never feels full with wet food only. Not with the wet foods I have tried at least. She also panics if she doesn't see any (dry) food on the plate at all times but she usually doesn't even eat it.

Maybe try dental care kibbles. They are harder in texture and doesn't seem very pleasant to eat for them. I have heard from some people how they make oral care kibbles only like quarter or less of the cat's diet. If you give only oral care kibble they might eat a few and then give up but still have access to food. (I'm thinking this might be an option to try for nights so you can sleep.)

If they just like eating, more meals with smaller portions and a lower calorie food could help. I personally know Purina's different foods like TWO 80 grams wet food of one line = FOUR 80 grams of wet food of another line calorie-wise.
 

darg

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I don't know how feasible it would be with more than one cat in the home but have you tried smaller meals fed more frequently with one of them being a late night meal?
 

di and bob

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How about deli sliced or shaved turkey/chicken breast. That woudl be lean and not have many calories. They could have some as a treat before bedtime. If they insist on dry food, or it helps them to feel satisfied, I get Science Diet weight control. My cats have been very happy with it.
 

Azazel

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Noted and thanks.

Just wondering, does pumpkin puree help them lose weight or does it just help them feel full while not adding to their weight? How much pumpkin puree should I feed them?
Pumpkin is just empty carbs. I only use a very small amount sometimes to help with diarrhea/constipation. I don’t think it has any benefits for weight loss. If anything it would probably do the opposite.

What recipe are you using for your homemade food? Maybe you can decrease the fat amount if you’re using fatty cuts of meat or skin?
 
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MikeAW2010

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Pumpkin is just empty carbs. I only use a very small amount sometimes to help with diarrhea/constipation. I don’t think it has any benefits for weight loss. If anything it would probably do the opposite.

What recipe are you using for your homemade food? Maybe you can decrease the fat amount if you’re using fatty cuts of meat or skin?
Recipe is varies from time to time. This recipe is being used to feed 6 cats ...lately it has been

8 - 10lbs Boneless Chicken Breasts & Thighs
Carton of Chicken Liver
Package of Chicken Heart and Gizzards
Chicken Bones that I grind in a blender
Two Table Spoons of Sea Salt
Vitamin B / E and aprox 4000 mg of Fish Oil

In the past I used to get leg quarters and while it was cheaper, it became too time consuming to seperate the meat from the bone and the skin from chicken so I resorted to stuff I can start grinding almost immediately.

Their current diet rarely consists of chicken skin or fat, or to a minimal level
 

Azazel

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Since you’re using lean and skinless cuts of meat I agree that this recipe shouldn’t lead to lots of weight gain unless overfed. I think you might just have to put up with the cries for food and not give in for a while. They may get used to it. Sorry I can’t think of any better options.
 

Azazel

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By the way, you might want to consider using Lite Salt instead of Sea Salt. I worry about too much sodium intake on sea salt and potential problems with hyperthyroidism.
 

mrsgreenjeens

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Noted and thanks.

Just wondering, does pumpkin puree help them lose weight or does it just help them feel full while not adding to their weight? How much pumpkin puree should I feed them?
Our Vet suggested it might help our raw eating cat feel more full by adding perhaps just one teaspoon per meal (3 meals per day). I figured it might be because of the extra fiber. I don't really think of pumpkin as an unnecessary carb because it is a really good source of fiber. I tablespoon (combined daily total) does add about 18 calories though.

I think feeding them one meal right before bedtime sound like a good plan. I'm sorry I didn't suggest that. It's something I have always done. Mine get fed when we wake up in the morning, around 2 in the afternoon, and again at bedtime. Works for our schedule, but not everyone is retired :wink:
 

Azazel

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Our Vet suggested it might help our raw eating cat feel more full by adding perhaps just one teaspoon per meal (3 meals per day). I figured it might be because of the extra fiber. I don't really think of pumpkin as an unnecessary carb because it is a really good source of fiber. I tablespoon (combined daily total) does add about 18 calories though.

I think feeding them one meal right before bedtime sound like a good plan. I'm sorry I didn't suggest that. It's something I have always done. Mine get fed when we wake up in the morning, around 2 in the afternoon, and again at bedtime. Works for our schedule, but not everyone is retired :wink:
Well, I say unnecessary carbs because most cats really don’t need the added fiber in their diet. I’m really not sure if the feeling of fullness that it might bring is a good trade off for the amount of calories from carbs that it adds.

Why not do an additional treat of a chicken gizzard a day or every other day? Full of good nutrients and good for the teeth.
 

mrsgreenjeens

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Well, I say unnecessary carbs because most cats really don’t need the added fiber in their diet. I’m really not sure if the feeling of fullness that it might bring is a good trade off for the amount of calories from carbs that it adds.

Why not do an additional treat of a chicken gizzard a day or every other day? Full of good nutrients and good for the teeth.
Ours may just have been a special case. Our guy was getting the very least amount of calories our Vet thought was safe and he was barely maintaining his new svelte body weight and seemed hungry as well. She thought adding a small amount of pumpkin might help. (He hates gizzards BTW. And chicken and/or duck hearts :rolleyes2:. OMG, you should see him...he goes screaming from the room if I DARE serve up those:running::eek:) I wish he would eat gizzards because he's going to have to have a dental in 10 days. If he would chew on those things he probably wouldn't need that cleaning :sigh:
 

Azazel

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Ours may just have been a special case. Our guy was getting the very least amount of calories our Vet thought was safe and he was barely maintaining his new svelte body weight and seemed hungry as well. She thought adding a small amount of pumpkin might help. (He hates gizzards BTW. And chicken and/or duck hearts :rolleyes2:. OMG, you should see him...he goes screaming from the room if I DARE serve up those:running::eek:) I wish he would eat gizzards because he's going to have to have a dental in 10 days. If he would chew on those things he probably wouldn't need that cleaning :sigh:
Sounds like it makes sense for your situation then. Haha, cats are so finicky. Mine are obsessed with gizzards and hearts. :dunno:

Some cats are also just prone to dental issues. My girl has horrible teeth despite the raw and gizzard chewing.
 
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