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Hi,
I have an 8 month old gray tabby named Rupert. He is approx. 10 lbs and I cannot feel his ribs when he's standing unless I push really hard. He eats slightly less than half a cup of blue buffalo dry food and 1.5 oz of canned Trader Joes...so he doesn't eat too much but his belly looks pretty round...Any ideas? I don't want to be feeding him less since he's still a kitten. Thanks!
 

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It is hard to tell whether a cat is "fat" or not, because it really depends on his build. I think there is a chart floating around showing appropriate sizing for cats. Hopefully someone comes around to help you soon.
 

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Thanks for the chart, well it seems to me that he is "ideal," I guess he just weighs a lot...
 

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Haha, if it makes you feel any better, my cat is 6.5 months and fully 10 and a half pounds. o_O However, in my opinion, bigger cats make for more optimal snuggling! :D
 

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Ansen was obese at one point, then overweight after a while. He didn't eat that much. He was just a big buddy. Like people I guess, some people are a little on the heavy side no matter how hard they try.

Once I took him to a new vet. She mentioned that he needed to lose some weight. I tried to convince her that he wasn't fat, just well-loved. She was not amused and absolutely tore into me. Oh well. He was happy, that's all that matters.
 

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Yeah it's hard to judge by weight alone. Apollo is 10.3 lbs and only 8 months old. Last time I had him to the vet she said he was bordering on the edge of chubby, but not at the point where she was concerned yet, as long as he didn't gain any more weight. He's since lost a little with a more regulated diet and less free-feeding. But the indication of his slight chubbiness was his waist, rather than his weight. He's a very muscular cat, and was heavy to lift and very large even before he started getting chubby. He's the size of a full-grown cat and I'm not even sure he's done growing yet (his paws are massive).

So charts like the one above are the best judge, as ideal weight will differ drastically between breeds and even individual cats within a breed.
 

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My experience has been that the chart is very good, but accompanied by the palpation test. If you cannot feel his ribs without pressing slightly, he is overweight. Sometimes as pet owners, we are a little bit more forgiving about our pet's weight than a Vet would be. Well meaning owners tend to make excuses as to why the pet is fat...they hardly eat a thing is the most common.

Dry food usually puts on weight so maybe putting your cat on canned will regulate his weight a bit more, and of course, activity level. Some cats need to eat more and some don't need too much food at all depending on how much they actually move during the day. Sometimes, it's genetic. Some put on weight faster and easier than other cats, if this is the case, you will need to watch your pet's diet more closely for the rest of its life.

My Azalia is like this. She eats 3 oz of canned and 3-4 oz of raw a day and she is well over 10 lbs. She is a big girl. She is now maintaining this weight from being almost 13 lbs a few months ago.
 

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This chart is difficult to use on my medium-hair girls. I suspect that Sabrina might be on the slightly bigger side of ideal. Everything looks "ideal" on her, but she has this kind of "pooch" that sort of hangs from her lower abdomen. Is this kind of like the fatty pad that Ragdolls have? Sidonie doesn't have it, she's just a slim, svelte girl. When Sabrina wakes up I'll have to try the ribs test on her.
 

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Found this article:

How Do I Determine if My Cat is Overweight?

Veterinarians often use a 9 point scoring system to evaluate the body condition of pets. A point value of 1 means the cat is extremely thin to the point of emaciation. A score of 9 means the pet is grossly overweight. And like Goldilocks and the three bears, a score of 5 is 'just right.' To determine body score, there are several specific areas of the cat we look at. Remember, these are guidelines.

NOTE: We have included some illustrations at the end of this article which depict the contours of various body scores.

To perform the rating, we first feel the cat's ribs. We should be able to quite easily feel the ribs. There should be a slight amount of fat over them, but each rib should be distinct. If you can see the ribs, the pet is too thin. If you can not feel them at all, the pet is very overweight.

Second, check the area near the base of the tail. There should be a slight fat covering over this area and it should feel smooth. If the bones protrude, the pet is too thin; if you can not feel any bones at all, the pet is very overweight.

Third, feel other bony prominences on the pet's body such as the spine, shoulders, and hips. Again, you should be able to feel a small amount of fat over these areas. If these bones are easily felt or visible, the cat is too thin. If you can not feel the bones beneath the layer of fat, the animal is obviously overweight.

Fourth, look at your cat from above. The animal should have a definite waist behind the ribs. If the waist is extreme, or again, bony prominences are visible, the animal is too thin. If there is no waist, or worse yet, the area between the ribs and hips is wider than the hips or ribs, the cat is grossly overweight.

Fifth, look at the cat from the side. Cats should have an abdominal tuck, i.e., the area behind the ribs should be smaller in diameter than the chest. An animal who is too thin will have a very severe abdominal tuck. Overweight animals will have no abdominal tuck.

If you feel your cat is overweight, consult your veterinarian to determine if there are any other medical problems before starting the animal on a weight reduction program. Your veterinarian can also suggest various diets, how fast your pet should lose weight, etc. (Overweight cats can become severely ill if their diet is too restricted.)
 
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Leivie isnt a big cat but he weighs 13lbs, prolly close to overweight.... I think hes a boredom eater. Anyway, I have made the laser a night time routine and when Freckles starts panting like a cheetah I put it away.... Needless to say Leivie actually jumps at the light now.
 

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If you cannot feel his ribs easily I'd say he's overweight. At 8 months he's a kitten but not rapidly growing like he was before. I hink it is safe to cut back a little. You could even just replace some of the dry food with wet food. I know one of my cats could never be his perfect weight with any dry food at all. Even the small amount he now steals from the dog pushes his weight up.
 

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Here's something I was wondering...what exactly causes the baggy belly when they're not actually fat? Is that just loose skin from previous weight?

Both my cats used to be a little chubby but have since slimmed down now that I'm giving them set mealtimes of canned. From the top, they both match the "ideal" image, but from the side, they match the "overweight" image.
 

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Here's something I was wondering...what exactly causes the baggy belly when they're not actually fat? Is that just loose skin from previous weight?

Both my cats used to be a little chubby but have since slimmed down now that I'm giving them set mealtimes of canned. From the top, they both match the "ideal" image, but from the side, they match the "overweight" image.
Ditto this question. Sidonie seems as if she's always been slim, but Sabrina, who has the "ideal" dips at the shoulders and hips from above, has this loose skin on her abdomen. Adding in her fluffy fur, she looks like the "overweight" cat on the charts.
 

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Ditto this question.
Me three. Mow has a dip before his hips and is, imo, a little too lean(but then I like a bit of upholstery on my men).

But he has this flap of fat on his lower belly. He's got one big man boob (that he loves sqooshed) that hangs down. I sqoosh it periodically to make sure there's no lump or solid mass in it but it just feels like fat....but he's not fat (I swear).
 

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There's a special name for that flap of skin they get- you see it a lot on big cats, too. Internet indicates that it's called the Greater Omentum (although if you search for "greater omentum cat" you just get a lot of results of dissections :/ ) I swear there was another name, too, but I can't remember it.
Anyway, it seems to be pretty normal and not really an indicator of whether kitty is too tubby. There doesn't seem to be a consensus on what it means, as far as my exhaustive research (read: a five minute search on Google) showed.
 
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