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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
My cat Oscar is overweight. He is 14 years old. He weighs a little over 19 pounds. My vet and I worked out a diet plan for him that is working. He lost 8 ounces in the last 5 weeks - a nice slow pace of weight loss. But, in order for him to lose weight, he can only eat 150 calories per day. Anything more than that, he either gains weight or just stays at the same weight. (I weigh him once or twice a week on a digital baby scale.) He must have the metabolism of a garden slug.

Should I be concerned that he is eating so few calories per day? I read somewhere that the minimum calories per day should be 15 calories per pound of "ideal weight". Oscar is a big boy and will probably stablilize at 14 or 15 pounds - that come out to 210 to 225 calories per day!

He is on an all wetfood diet, with about 90 calories of Wellness Chicken or Turkey and 60 calories of Weruva Paw Licking Chicken. I would also appreciate wet food suggestions that would help me bump up his protein intake so he doesn't lose muscle mass.

Thanks for your help.
 

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You don't need to be concerned about the exact number of calories he's taking in as long as he is losing weight gradually and safely, and as long as his meals are nutritionally balanced.

Laurie
 

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Honestly, it's really quite unlikely that he will be at a good weight at 14-15 pounds. There is really not that much variation in body type in cats (as there is in dogs), and most cats are best at 9-11 pounds. There are a few outliers, but not anywhere NEAR the number whose owners THINK they are outliers. ;)

I would be giving him about 1/2 of a large 13 oz can a day. Don't worry about calories. If he's losing slowly but constantly, you're doing good. But let him get to be a SLIM cat, not a chunky cat. Cats are supposed to be slab-sided--if he has bulges to the side at ALL he's still too fat. You should be able to feel his spine and hip bones without pressing really hard and searching for them. Slim is healthier for everyone! :)
 

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Discussion Starter #4
You don't need to be concerned about the exact number of calories he's taking in as long as he is losing weight gradually and safely, and as long as his meals are nutritionally balanced.

Laurie
Thanks Laurie, I was hoping you would "weigh in" :cool: on my post! When I was searching the forum for weight loss tips, I kept finding your method of using the scale and adjusting the amount of food to keep a steady weight loss. I was just worried about hepatic lipidosis from a low calorie diet.

Hoofmaiden - you sound like my vet! Thank you for the reminder! When I asked her what Oscar's target weight might be, she said we would have to go by body condition, not weight! But she reminded me that he is a big boned cat, like his brother, who was perfect at 14 pounds.

And, unfortunately, I do have to go by calories - I spent 3 months trying to work out a diet with just ounces of food. He was gaining weight on 4.5 ounces of Wellness per day! If I gave him half of a 13 ounce can every day he would soon weigh 25 pounds!:fust

Any ideas for a grain free wet food that has more protein calories than the 30% in the Wellness? The Weruva has about 53% calories from protein, but I want to try to get some sort of food rotation going for him.
 

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And, unfortunately, I do have to go by calories - I spent 3 months trying to work out a diet with just ounces of food. He was gaining weight on 4.5 ounces of Wellness per day! If I gave him half of a 13 ounce can every day he would soon weigh 25 pounds!:fust

Any ideas for a grain free wet food that has more protein calories than the 30% in the Wellness? The Weruva has about 53% calories from protein, but I want to try to get some sort of food rotation going for him.
Be sure to calculate via dry matter analysis--going by the "as fed" isn't really that helpful.

Some cats, like some people, are just easy keepers! So feed him less. But again, I'm not sure it helps to focus on calories. Give him 1/4 of a large can at each meal and see how he does on that. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks again, Hoofmaiden! I am using the Binky's charts and some newer nutritional charts from the Diabetes Message board to calculate protein/fat/carb percentages but I'll go back and make sure I am using all dry matter basis. That whole as fed vs dry matter vs guaranteed analysis gives me a headache!

I read an article by Dr. Mark Peterson about how important it is to increase the protein in an older cat's diet to offset the loss of muscle mass from aging, I even have a little spreadsheet going to work out the Wellness/Weruva combo percentages.

I went to using calories because there is such a huge difference in calories for each food. Wellness is 120 calories per 3 ounces. Weruva is 60 calories per 3 ounces. I am trying to work towards a rotation of food so it might be easier for me to figure out how much of each food he can have per day without driving myself crazy (it might already be too late!)
 

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I read an article by Dr. Mark Peterson about how important it is to increase the protein in an older cat's diet to offset the loss of muscle mass from aging, I even have a little spreadsheet going to work out the Wellness/Weruva combo percentages.
Yes but . . . keep in mind that most cats (those fed kibble and poor quality canned) get much less protein. You have already increased the protein incrementally just by going to Wellness or Evo. So I suspect you're just fine and don't need to worry overmuch about that.
 
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