We’ve all seen memes with those adorably large kitties. We might chuckle at what we call a ‘fluffy’ or ‘big-boned’ kitty, but excess weight can be damaging to kitty’s health. We as humans experience health consequences from too much food, and felines are not so different. Sometimes it’s necessary to put kitty on a bit of a diet. But where to start? If your cat needs to slim down for his health, it can be hard on you as a human. Here are some handy tips to help your cat lose weight.
Schedule a Vet Checkup
The first thing you may want to do is schedule a checkup with your veterinarian. This is especially true if your cat has suddenly put on quite a bit of weight. There are many potential causes of weight gain with cats, so it doesn’t hurt to visit the vet.
In addition, cats are unlike humans in that they can’t go very long without eating. If your cat doesn’t eat for two days, he could develop a serious medical condition commonly known as fatty liver syndrome.
Finally, your visit with the vet will help guide you as you come up with a weight loss plan for your cat. It will also give you a little peace of mind to ensure you’re helping your cat lose weight in a healthy way.
Cutting Calories Can Help Cats Lose Weight
Somewhat similar to us humans, calorie intake for cats should be counted. This is a specific question you will want to ask your vet about. In fact, many vets will be able to recommend a special cat food that contains the calorie count on the label. Working with your vet to figure out how many calories your cat needs to lose weight will be a good starting point.
Help Kitty Gradually Try New Food
If you find a food made for weight loss, don’t just abruptly switch out kitty’s current kibble. You’ll need to mix the two types of food over the course of a couple of weeks. Doing this will help prevent your cat’s stomach from getting upset with the introduction of a new food.
Plan Meal Times
Rather than letting your cat access food all day long, plan his meal times. Setting specific times of day for your cat to eat could help him lose weight. First, it removes the temptation to wander over to his food bowl when he isn’t that hungry. (Sounds a bit like us humans and our refrigerators!) Second, feeding your cat at specific times of the day will also help you keep an eye on how much he is eating. This will be helpful as you cut back on his calories.
Playtime Can Help Your Cat Lose Weight
Exercise is beneficial to your cat’s health in general. If he’s on a diet to lose some weight, exercise will be a useful tool. Dedicate some additional minutes to playing with your cat while he’s losing weight. It’s a great way to show him that you care about him too.