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Old 11-06-2012, 01:21 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Need Advice About My Fat Cat

I have a female cat that is 8 years old and she was 18lbs last time she was at the vet. The vet said she seemed healthy then other then the fact she is overweight. She has always been overweight but it is really starting to worry me lately because I believe it is starting to affect her breathing (she has started snoring). She is eating Blue Buffalo Wilderness dry food and only gets 2 tablespoons twice a day. I have tried wet food but she won't touch it. I have tried getting her to exercise with toys and laser pointers but she won't chase or play with toys and will only chase the laser for a minute then doesn't want to play anymore. I plan on taking her to the vet to see if there is any medical reasons for her weight but if there isn't I know the vet will want to put her on a prescription diet and I do not like the prescription diets. Does anyone have any ideas on how to get her to lose weight assuming there is no medical reason for her weight. Thanks for any help.
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Old 11-06-2012, 07:47 AM   #2 (permalink)
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You are right to be concerned. A fat cat is not a healthy cat.

Keep trying with the canned food. There are so many to choose from. You want foods that are low in carbohydrates. Dr Lisa Pierson has made a list of canned foods and their carb percentage.

http://catinfo.org/docs/Food%20Chart...%209-22-12.pdf

Her site also offers a lot of advice on how to transition a kibble addict to a wet diet.

http://catinfo.org/docs/Tips%20for%2...%201-14-11.pdf

I recommend you get a baby scale for weekly weighing. It is very important to do this slowly, no more than 4 ounces a week.

Don't give up on the playing. She doens't play because she doesn't have any energy, because she is heavy, and because she eats dry food. She will feel so much better and be more active once she is transitioned to a wet diet, but in the mean time:

Play at scheduled times. Cats thrive on routine. Even if she will only play for 30 seconds at each session, keep at it. Keep trying different games. Try Catch the Bump Under the Rug type games for her.

Get a wand or string toy and drag it slowly under something, a rug or newspaper. Some cats like to pounce while they can still see it peeking out. Other cats prefer it to be completely hidden and just wiggling under the rug or paper.
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Old 11-06-2012, 07:53 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Oscar is also overweight and is on a diet right now. He never lost weight until I switched him over to the wet food. Oscar is very food motivated and also doesn't like to play much, so we "go hunting". At meal times we lead him with his food bowl and get him to follow us through the house, with several laps around the dining room table and out into the living room with a final running dash back to the kitchen to eat.
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Old 11-06-2012, 11:31 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I agree--keep trying to get her on the canned food. You must be VERY careful w/ a fat cat--fasting could easily throw her into hepatic lipidosis. Try offering multiple small meals a day of canned, and also try mixing a VERY small amount of canned into the dry and then very slowly increasing the canned while decreasing the dry. It's so important for her health--her weight, but also for urinary tract/kidney health--for her to be on canned, so it's well worth the effort.

You might also try raw--some cats who hate canned love raw and it's the very best for them. Prey model or whole prey is best but pre-made patties are better than dry food by a BIG stretch.

Just don't give up!
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Old 11-06-2012, 11:40 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OSCARSMOM View Post
Oscar is also overweight and is on a diet right now. He never lost weight until I switched him over to the wet food. Oscar is very food motivated and also doesn't like to play much, so we "go hunting". At meal times we lead him with his food bowl and get him to follow us through the house, with several laps around the dining room table and out into the living room with a final running dash back to the kitchen to eat.
What a great idea for increasing a cat's exercise!
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Old 11-06-2012, 01:53 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Lottie is overweight (when we had her she was obese but has slimmed down from that). She is actually quite energetic (not at this moment as she is sleeping flat out on top of the radiator), often tearing up and down the stairs. Oddly enough she is probably the smallest eater of my crew and certainly the slowest and most methodical one. Although I would like her to lose a bit more weight, her diet is healthy and not excessive and she gets exercise so I do feel that I may have to accept that she is never going to be as slim as the others.
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Old 11-06-2012, 03:54 PM   #7 (permalink)
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yup, keep on doing whatever you can to get her to exercise. i believe as well that as soon as she really does start to get the hang of it, she'll start to enjoy the play and exercise and her energy level will increase. it's the opposite of a vicious cycle then. our kitty doesn't like to be picked up, so i would make like i would do it and follow her around the house nice and slow and she would be forced to keep on walking just to get away from me. (i wasn't scaring her really! she was probably just a little annoyed. when she DID finally get sick of it, she knew she could just lie down on her blanket because i would never invade her space there and try to pick her up) if you have stairs where you live, that could be another good way to get a different kind of exercise. just bring her downstairs so that she has to go UP every once in a while to get to her food. good luck!

btw, this is just an fyi, but we have an 11 yr old who is 9 lbs and she gets @100 cals/day. our 14 yr old who is 15.5 lbs gets @150 cals/day. both mostly wet. the only dry food is the treats like greenies or pet greens. neither is REALLY active, but they do like to play when they can. they're certainly not couch potatoes and i think they're both very happy. maybe this will help you figure out how many cals to feed your baby.
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Old 11-09-2012, 10:53 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Thanks for the input everyone. If I am going to switch from a dry food to wet food, I'd rather do raw. I also think they would take to the raw better then the wet food. I am trying to decide between making my own or buying a premade raw diet like Primal or Bravo. Does anyone have any thoughts on that?
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Old 11-09-2012, 11:54 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I havent personally tried the Bravo or Primal but I heard they have a lot of veggies in them. Someone recommended to me Felines Pride or Rad Cat... Much more natural with 0 veggies. One of the resellers of Felines Pride is kind of close to me. I just have yet to get there and get some to try.

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Old 11-10-2012, 08:59 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sage8662 View Post
Thanks for the input everyone. If I am going to switch from a dry food to wet food, I'd rather do raw. I also think they would take to the raw better then the wet food. I am trying to decide between making my own or buying a premade raw diet like Primal or Bravo. Does anyone have any thoughts on that?
Many (including myself) start with premade (I use Rad Cat) and then gradually start adding in Prey Model or a home made grind. I feed a combo of Rad Cat and Prey Model and canned.
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