Fat cats are almost celebrated in today?s society. Contests and advertising campaigns often revolve around who has the fattest cat.
The problem these contests are that they encourage pet owners to over feed their pets in order to win a prize. What some people don?t
realize is that obesity is just as dangerous for cats as it is for the humans.
Identifying a fat cat
Identifying if a cat is overweight is the first step to ensuring a long and happy life for the cat. Fat cats may appear readily
identifiable, but this is far from the case. Natural coats, health issues, and seasonality, all figure into the equation. But there are
a few ways to look past these elements to determine where a cat stands in terms of its overall weight issues. Not a part of the weight
check list but as a matter of course is a trip to the veterinarian. Past this, there is a five point check list that will give an idea
of the cats? status.
Where to look
The general idea to think about, when checking to see if your cat is overweight, is; how much fat is on the cats body and where is it
located. There are several places on the cats? body that will tell the tale, as-it-were. Fat cats may not have the required fat on all
of the recommended ?check points? but common sense should give an overall representation. As a general rule, a normal cats? weight should
be between 9-11 pounds.
The following areas are check points to determine whether a cat may have weight issues. Your determination may be subjective but if you are
honest about the evaluation you will know the answer. Fat should be at the check points, but not so that the bones are overly apparent
(visually or tactilely) or covered excessively by fat.
-Base of tail
-Spine, shoulders, hips
-Look from above-there should be a definite waist behind the ribs. If the waist is bigger than the ribs the cat is obese rather than fat.
-Look from the side-the same applies here as it does from the top.
When making the assessment that your cat looks fat, do not pass it off with an ?it?s not too bad? attitude. Be honest about the assessment and check
with the veterinarian for the best course of action while looking for possible health issues. Fat cats can be a result of illness just as much as
a result of overfeeding or inactivity. If a quick check is desired past the visual inspection try weighing yourself and then yourself with the cat
to find a weight for the cat. A weight that is 20 percent over ideal is fat.
Balanced weight reduction
Having a discussion with the veterinarian is the best way to begin a diet regiment. Fat cats and their care givers, however, may follow a few
guidelines for reducing overall weight. The very first thing that an owner should understand about weight reduction in cats is that it is about
nutrients just as much as it is about reducing fat intake.
Because using a higher concentration of fiber is a method of changing a cats diet nutrients are often reduced. Because of this, the overall
health of the cat may become just as much of an issue. If this path is followed a list of supplements should be recommended by the Veterinarian.
Fat cats need their supplements just as humans do.
Overweight cats may be considered lovable by their owners but they are at just as much risk as their owners if the condition persists. Fat cats
of today can be healthy cats of tomorrow but action needs to be taken as a first step.