New Year’s Kitty Resolutions: Best Cat Weight Loss Tips
If your vet has determined that your kitty is overweight or obese, it’s time to put him on a diet so he can slim down to a healthier weight and reduce the risk of a variety of diseases. But this is often easier said than done, especially if your cat loves to eat, is used to getting a lot of treats throughout the day, or even eats out of boredom.
To make the process easier on both you and your feline friend, check out the best cat weight loss tips below to help your kitty shed some pounds.
Don’t Overfeed Your Cat
Sometimes cats will ask for food not because they’re truly hungry, but because they’re bored or craving attention. So if your kitty is always begging for treats but your vet has told you that you need to cut back on the amount of food and treats that you provide your pet with daily, try giving him attention in the form of playtime or a relaxing petting session instead.
Also, if you do give your cat treats, stick with low-calorie options and reduce the other food you provide accordingly, while making sure treats make up 10% or less of your kitty’s caloric intake every day.
Related: What To Do With Your Overweight Cat
Stick to a Schedule for Feeding Times
Another way to prevent yourself from overfeeding your pet is by coming up with a feeding schedule. Your vet will be able to help you come up with an appropriate schedule for meals that will give your kitty the nutrition he needs without the weight gain.
For example, if you’re currently feeding your cat multiple cans of wet food every day, your vet may recommend cutting back on the number of cans and/or making portion sizes smaller. Or if you’re feeding one or two large meals every day, your vet may recommend feeding several smaller meals throughout the day instead.
Regardless of what schedule your vet suggests, however, the key to helping your cat shed those pounds lies in you actually sticking to it.
Make Sure Water Is Always Available
Your kitty should have access to fresh water at all times because he may find that he isn’t as hungry after having something to drink. Place the water bowl, along with the food bowl, in an area that’s away from your cat’s usual napping spot so he has to walk a decent distance to the bowls and get some exercise in the process.
Ensure Your Cat Stays Active
As your kitty gets older, you may find that he also becomes less active, but try to schedule in some interactive playtime, and provide your cat with toys in order to keep him active while maintaining a healthy weight.
You can, for example, schedule two 10-minute play sessions every day, and you can use a variety of toys, from stuffed mice and feather toys, to catnip toys and cardboard boxes, to keep things interesting.
Work with Your Vet
When it comes to helping your pet reach and maintain the ideal weight, working with your vet can be really helpful. Together, you can determine what the best food for your kitty would be, how often your cat should be fed, and how large the portion sizes should be. Your vet might also recommend low-calorie or low-carb cat foods or those that can help increase your pet’s metabolism.
On top of working with your vet and following the tips above, be sure to keep an eye on your cat’s body condition along the way, in addition to tracking the number on the scale. Before long, you should find that your kitty is at a healthier weight, yet just as happy and satisfied.
Lisa Selvaggio is a freelance writer and editor, and our resident cats-pert, with certifications in pet nutrition and pet first aid. She enjoys producing content that helps people understand animals better so they can give their pets a safe and happy home.
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