Obesity is one of the most common health issues we see in our feline patients. In fact, over half of America’s cats are, well, a bit chubby. That’s a lot of pudgy pets! Read on as a Fort Collins, CO vet discusses kitty obesity.
Fluffy will still be adorable if she’s overweight, but she’ll be much healthier staying at or near her ideal weight. Obesity increases your kitty’s chances of developing some very dangerous health problems, including heart disease, diabetes, respiratory issues, and even certain cancers!
Cats are absolutely adorable, and they know it. Fluffy isn’t above using her cute faces and charming meows to cajole you into handing out treats and snacks. In fact, many pets have their humans trained to feed them on demand! That’s one reason it’s so important to pay attention to portion sizes. Even giving your furball just ten calories too much a day can lead to a weight gain of about a pound a year. That’s a lot for a kitty! Ask your vet for specific recommendations.
If you put Fluffy on a treadmill, she’ll probably curl up and take a nap on it. You may need to trick or tempt your furball into staying active. Get Fluffy some pieces of cat furniture that will entice her to jump and climb. (Tip: cat towers are great for this.) You can also get your kitty moving by playing with her every day. Use toys that you can control, like a laser pointer or feather toy. This will make playtime more challenging for your cat, and will also help keep her moving.
With some kitties, it’s quite obvious that they are overweight. However, it isn’t always that easy to tell if a cat is obese or not, especially with longhaired furballs. While you’ll want to get an official opinion from your vet, there is a simple test you can do. Try to feel your kitty’s ribs. If you can’t feel them at all, Fluffy probably isn’t just fluffy. If you can easily feel them beneath a layer of fat and skin, your pet may be near her ideal weight. If they’re protruding, your pet may actually be underweight.
Do you know or suspect that your cat is obese? Is Fluffy overdue for a veterinary exam? Contact us, your Fort Collins, CO vet clinic, today!