The Cat’s Meow on Pet Weight Loss by Amy Hanchiruk

Cat weight loss: one of the biggest challenges we face at veterinary clinics and even as cat owners ourselves. Obesity is a rising concern for people and animals. Humans and dogs are a bit easier to gain success in weight loss, as we like to do things like go for walks around the neighborhood or stroll through a park.

Can you say you regularly see cats out doing this with their owners? So how do we help out our feline friends? First I think we have to understand cats a bit better. We see our cats as animals that sleep 23 out of 24 hours of the day but, in fact they are naturally very active creatures.

Take a look at the stray/feral/barn cats, do you see them lazing around sleeping? No and they are up and moving with the occasional “cat nap”. They spend most of their day hunting for their food where as your common house cat has it served to it daily in the same place and generally at the same time. I would recommend that you change things up for them. Stimulate that natural hunting behaviour and make them work for their food.

If you think of the cats outside hunting mice they are generally catching and eating mice 12 times a day. It has been researched and noted that 1 mouse is roughly equal to 20 kcal. When you calculate a cats metabolic energy requirement (MER) it usually equals 250 kcal/day therefore the outdoor cats are hunting and intaking their ideal amount of food.

Cats are also known for not taking in enough water so it is recommended that you add some canned food into your cats diet.  This may help to give them that full feeling.  There are many different suggestions for exercise that we can give you to help your feline friend to stay a happy and healthy weight. Please contact us at Park Road Veterinary Clinic if you would like to arrange to discuss in more detail. We are always open to helping you with your beloved pet and remember: “Let food be thy medicine”.