helping cat lose weight

cat mom 2020

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ok so i’m under 18, and the only one in the family who thinks my cat is overweight. i don’t want him to have problems because of this so i want to help him. he eats meow mix dry food and friskey’s wet food. how much should i feed him a day? how to help him lose weight? how much should he weigh?
 

CatladyJan

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ok so i’m under 18, and the only one in the family who thinks my cat is overweight. i don’t want him to have problems because of this so i want to help him. he eats meow mix dry food and friskey’s wet food. how much should i feed him a day? how to help him lose weight? how much should he weigh?
How old is your cat? What does your cat weigh?
 

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It’s not as much about weight because every breed is built a little different. It’s more about muscle and body shape. Here is a link to a general body shape guide. cat-body-shape-guide-390w-410h.png
Exercise is important. Using toys to encourage play can help. Playing with kitty also helps. Kicker toys are popular here. With some of my kitties, catnip gets them running and playing. You don’t mention how old your kitty is and that plays a part in the nutrition required. The best advice may come from your vet. If the vet feels kitty is overweight, they can give you help on portioning food for kitty. If your kitty has and Maine Coon, Bengal or Savannah cat genes( along with some other breeds) it may just be a larger kitty. We do love pictures here so maybe you could post a photo of kitty along with a bit more information. I think it’s great that you care about your kitty!
 

CatladyJan

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It’s not as much about weight because every breed is built a little different. It’s more about muscle and body shape. Here is a link to a general body shape guide. cat-body-shape-guide-390w-410h.png
Exercise is important. Using toys to encourage play can help. Playing with kitty also helps. Kicker toys are popular here. With some of my kitties, catnip gets them running and playing. You don’t mention how old your kitty is and that plays a part in the nutrition required. The best advice may come from your vet. If the vet feels kitty is overweight, they can give you help on portioning food for kitty. If your kitty has and Maine Coon, Bengal or Savannah cat genes( along with some other breeds) it may just be a larger kitty. We do love pictures here so maybe you could post a photo of kitty along with a bit more information. I think it’s great that you care about your kitty!
That is true as well. All of my adult cats have the primordial pouch. Each of my cats has different bone size, activity level....
 
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cat mom 2020

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It’s not as much about weight because every breed is built a little different. It’s more about muscle and body shape. Here is a link to a general body shape guide. cat-body-shape-guide-390w-410h.png
Exercise is important. Using toys to encourage play can help. Playing with kitty also helps. Kicker toys are popular here. With some of my kitties, catnip gets them running and playing. You don’t mention how old your kitty is and that plays a part in the nutrition required. The best advice may come from your vet. If the vet feels kitty is overweight, they can give you help on portioning food for kitty. If your kitty has and Maine Coon, Bengal or Savannah cat genes( along with some other breeds) it may just be a larger kitty. We do love pictures here so maybe you could post a photo of kitty along with a bit more information. I think it’s great that you care about your kitty!
he’s a rescue and we don’t know his breed at all because his mom died before we got him but he is almost 8
 
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cat mom 2020

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That is true as well. All of my adult cats have the primordial pouch. Each of my cats has different bone size, activity level....
he’s really fat and never plays besides pawing at string sometimes (we got a new kitten and he does play sometimes but only like once a day)
 

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yes i’ll try to get a pic. we free feed dry food how much dry should he get a day with his one can of wet?
I would stop with the free feeding and set up meal times with a set amount which is based on his activity level, age, weight.
 

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So agree to not free feed. Dry food has carbs your car does not need and will gain weight so wet only but start with a mixture. Feed 3x a day. Do you have wand toys? Many people will suggest da bird but my cats like to hunt,chase,and capture. Check out this site to give you some ideas. Catfooddb.com. Has your cat ever been combo tested? If you are on a budget fancy feast classics or sheba roasted chicken or Turkey. All cats are different. Maggie is longer and taller than my other cats. Very active 9 pds classic tabby.
 
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cat mom 2020

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So agree to not free feed. Dry food has carbs your car does not need and will gain weight so wet only but start with a mixture. Feed 3x a day. Do you have wand toys? Many people will suggest da bird but my cats like to hunt,chase,and capture. Check out this site to give you some ideas. Catfooddb.com. Has your cat ever been combo tested? If you are on a budget fancy feast classics or sheba roasted chicken or Turkey. All cats are different. Maggie is longer and taller than my other cats. Very active 9 pds classic tabby.
we feed wet twice a day (half a can each time) at morning and at night. would it be ok to do one cup of dry per day? right now he eats like 2-3 cups
 

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Please read my post above, I can't stress enough that you first need to be sure your cat needs to go on a diet. If so, be absolutely sure to go about it very very slowly, or you will be doing more harm than good.
 
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cat mom 2020

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Please read my post above, I can't stress enough that you first need to be sure your cat needs to go on a diet. If so, be absolutely sure to go about it very very slowly, or you will be doing more harm than good.
on the body score thing he is between the 7 and 9
 

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It’s good that you are trying to help your cat. It is very common for our pet cats to become overweight and sadly it does affect their quality of life and most likely their life span.

How to determine weight loss is first try to gauge how overweight is your cat. The attached chart can help. Can you easily feel his ribs or spine? Can you not feel them at all? You can use your kitten as a reference as I would image you can feel the ribs of the kitten pretty readily. When your cat sits “loaf style” are you able to see his haunches or is he just a large blob?

The chart uses body condition score and can be used to estimate percent overweight. For an “average” house cat 17 lbs is quite heavy. I would estimate that he is at least a 7 or 8 body condition score indicating that he is 20-30% overweight. For weight loss, the above suggestions are correct. The process needs to be done VERY slowly. Cats (especially fat cats) are very prone to developing a syndrome called fatty liver if not provided enough food. Fatty liver is life threatening and requires hospitalization so it is imperative to avoid.

How much food?
So assuming he should weigh between 12-13.5 lbs he only needs between 360 and 400 calories a day*. Dry food is very caloric. Original Meow Mix contains 308 calories per cup! A can of Friskies contains approx. 125 calories per can. Thus, if feeding one can of wet food per day he should only be receiving a little over ¾ of a cup of dry food a day. You would need to SLOWLY decrease his food intake to this amount over a period of 6-8 weeks to prevent any negative health effects.

Personally, I would suggest feeding him 2 cans of wet food a day and then make up the difference in calories with dry food. Wet food is much healthier for our kitties and I believe the bulk of their calories should come from wet food.

Your kitty appreciates you taking his health into consideration and worrying about his weight!

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*Calculated by 70*(cat’s ideal weight)^0.75*(0.8)
Also, please be aware that I made quite a few assumption when calculating how much to feed. Additional information regarding body condition score would be helpful or seeing a veterinarian is recommended.
 
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