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The domestic cat is one of the most popular pets.
Many cat owners shower them with love and feed them too often with treats.
This often leads to the cat suffering from obesity.
But the other way around can also happen: If a cat is too neglected or fed irregularly, it loses weight.
Even after illness or surgery, a cat often suffers from loss of appetite.
Neither of the methods above are healthy for the cats. In the article below we will try to address a cats’ weight problems and how best to handle each situation.
What Is the Ideal Weight for Domestic Cats?
On average, one in three domestic cats is too fat.
Obesity not only restricts the cat’s activity, but also affects its entire well-being, which can sometimes lead to health problems.
But what is the ideal weight for a cat? On average, a domestic cat weighs between 3.5 and 5.5 kg.
However, there are race-specific differences, for example a Maine Coon can weigh between 5 and 10 kg, but an Abyssinian weigh only 2.5 to 4 kg.
How Do Cats Become Overweight?
The reason for obesity in cats is usually due to too much or too high-calorie food.
In addition, if the cat is physically underutilized, then obesity is pre-programmed just as in humans.
In some cases, the excess weight of the cat may also be due to a metabolic disorder and medications administered.
Even castration or sterilization can reduce the cat’s energy requirements. She must then be fed less food in her daily meals.
Obesity in a cat is a very serious disease that can have health consequences for the animal.
In many cases, the cat can no longer move normally. Problems with the fur and skin can therefore occur.
Obesity not only limits the animal’s quality of life, but also shortens life expectancy.
Cat owners are often responsible for the obesity:
- Food is used as a consolation when the animal must stay alone.
- Game prompts by the owner are rewarded with food.
- Begging behavior is rewarded with treats and food.
- Feeding recommendations of the veterinarians are ignored.
- Lack of exercise for the cat.
What Can Be Done About Obesity? Are There Any Dietary Supplements That Help with This?
If cat owners find that their animal suffers from obesity, there are different ways to deal with it.
The cat owner can reduce the daily feed quantity to the recommended amount.
However, care should be taken to ensure that the animal is adequately supplied with all important nutrients, vitamins, and minerals.
With such a reduction diet, the cat does not have to get used to a new food, which is often fraught with problems.
Dietary supplements are only partly a way to reduce obesity.
It is not because the cat is overweight from its daily feed, but because of the additional treats and a certain laziness in terms of exercise.
As for treats, all family members must cooperate and not secretly give the cat treats because it is asking for it (at times begging).
Just as important as in humans is sufficient exercise for the cat.
Since the cat cannot accompany its owner to the gym, the cat owner must provide other means of physical activities.
My Cat is Too Lean – How to Buff it Up?
It is not uncommon for cats to lose more and more weight despite sufficient food.
In this case, the cat should be brought to a veterinarian, to find out the root cause of the continuous weight loss.
The veterinarian can also provide advise on how to increase the cat’s weight in a healthy manner.
Possible causes of weight loss:
- Parasites such as worms. An effective anthelmintic must be administered by the veterinarian.
- Cat has one or more tumors. These rob energy and lead to weight loss.
- Cat suffers from a metabolic disorder or a hormonal disorder, such as thyroid dysfunction.
- Cat suffers from disorders in the digestive tract with persistent diarrhea.
- Cat is subjected to constant stress.
Depending on the diagnosis, the cat’s food can be changed on the advice of the veterinarian.
However, only a high-quality cat food should be administered.
Vitamin pastes, medications, or supplements also helpful to restore the ideal weight.
Cat Needs Medication – What Is the Best Way to Administer Them?
Administering medication to a cat does not necessarily entails causing them to have elevated stress levels.
Cats are reluctant to take things that they do not like or are administered under duress.
But there are some tricks on how to give the cat their medication.
Behavior of the Cat Owner When Giving Medication
Cats have a very good sense of the mood of their owner.
In the truest sense of the word, they can smell their fear or the tension.
As an owner, one should therefore approach with calmness. The following methods allow the cat’s medications to be administered almost stress-free:
- Hiding method: Here, the drugs are hidden in strong-smelled foods (liver sausage, string cheese and the like).
- Submixing method: Suitable for not-too-strong drugs. You can finely crumble the medication with a mortar or the back of a spoon and mix it with their wet food. However, care must be taken to ensure that some medications (thyroid tablets) must not be crushed.
- Direct input method: This only works with a completely relaxed cat and if you are relaxed as well. The owner can pet the cat here and give her the medication directly in her mouth. Ideally, the owner bends the cat’s head in the neck, opens its mouth and drops the tablet into the throat. After that, the mouth should be gently held. This encourages the cat to swallow.
There are also some helpful tools to buy to aid in medicine administration.
- For the direct input method, you can get a tablet encoder.
- A tablet mortar is suitable for crushing.
- Tablet dividers are useful when tablets need to be halved or quartered.
- For the hiding method there are special treats. Liver sausage or vitamin paste is also suitable.
However, if you regularly take care of your beloved cat and pay attention to its diet, there is no need to be worried of overweight or underweight.
The cat will thank you and show her affection, in surprising forms.