Don't know what to do about fat cat! - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 01-31-2011, 04:40 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Garden Grove, CA
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Don't know what to do about fat cat!

I have a 6 year old indoor/outdoor cat named Zero. His previous owners WAY overfed him and he's a fat cat. He eats way too fast, is always begging for food, and tries to scoop food into his mouth because he was used to eating out of giant bowls filled with food. He has been around 17-18lbs but suddenly skyrocketed to 21lbs over the last 3-4 months. I was puzzled because I have always fed him diet food since I got him as well as recently putting him on high-protein low carb food and lowering his servings.

Tonight, he came in, ate, then barfed. In his barf was the dry food I feed him and what looked and smelled like wet tuna. This has convinced me he's eating food elsewhere outside, most likely at the neighbor's house, I think he puts food out for some strays or his own cat. This would explain his weight gain. What's compounding the problem is he still begged for food even though he had just eaten outside the home. There is no way for me to know what or how much he has eaten outside the home to adjust his indoor rations accordingly, he begs for food 24-7 whether he's hungry or not.

He's always been an indoor/outdoor cat since he was a kitten and if he can't get outside at night he becomes very stressed and claws/tears at the door so I can't really keep him inside indefinitely. Not sure what I can do other than try to talk to the neighbor but it just seems a bit rude to ask him to stop putting food out because my own fat cat can't stop going over there to eat it.
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 01-31-2011, 08:45 AM
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Location: Cobourg, Ontario, Canada
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I don't think you can do much if you can't or won't keep him inside, as you have no control, nor do you even know what food he is eating. Try to reduce the quantity of your cat's food very gradually. Obesity in cats can lead to health problems and will cost you $$$ if you can't get his weight under control. The only thing you can do is not to free-feed him at home. Don't have any food out, and only feed him meals at specific times, say morning and evening. You could talk to your neighbor and explain about your Mr. Piggy and find out what times he puts food out, and then only let your cat out at odd times when neighbor's food is likely to be eaten up.
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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 01-31-2011, 10:55 AM
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Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: California
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Really the only way you can control what he's eating is to not let him have access to outside food sources. Is there any way you can just make his outdoor time supervised outdoor time? Like harness training him, building an outdoor cat run, or just letting him play in the yard while you watch him?

It's tough if he's been used to going outside since kittenhood, but honestly it's probably in his best interests if you can get him used to staying indoors. Otherwise there's no way you'll really have control over his diet, and letting him remain overweight risks him developing diabetes or other issues.

Not to mention, southern California isn't super outdoor-cat-friendly, considering our level of traffic and wild predators (owls and coyotes). It'd definitely be safer for his health overall if you can get him used to not going out all the time/not going out alone.
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