It can be easy to ignore your cat's weight. Perhaps you just think of your feline friend as extra cuddly, but carrying just a few extra ounces can make a big difference to your cat's long-term health. Here our Rock Hill vets explain how to tell if your cat is overweight.
Long Term Health & Your Cat's Weight
Weight is an important element of your cat's overall health. Much like people, when your feline friend is carrying extra weight their risk of developing some serious and potentially life-threatening conditions increases dramatically. Just a few excess ounces can have a significant effect on your cat's vitality and longevity.
Increased Health Risks Faced by Overweight Cats
If your kitty is carrying extra weight they face an increased risk of developing one or more of the serious conditions listed below:
- Urinary tract infections
- Joint pain
- Chronic inflammation
- Skin problems
How To Tell If Your Cat Is Overweight
- A cat's body is perfectly designed for jumping. If it takes your kitty multiple tries to jump up onto their favorite piece of furniture, or if your cat gives up altogether, their weight could be the issue.
Check for Your Cat's Waistline
- While your cat is standing, look down at them from directly above. Try to spot a slight indent just above your cat's hips where their waist should be (this can be challenging with long-haired cats). If you can't see their waist or if their sides are bulging it means that your kitty is could be carrying excess weight.
Feel Your Cat's Rib Cage
- If your cat is at their correct weight you should be able to feel their ribs by running your hand along their chest. If you can't feel your kitty's ribs, your cat may be overweight.
Use Our Overweight Cat Chart
- Look over the illustrations below to get a better understanding of your cat's weight category, and whether your cat may be carrying an extra pound or two.
How to Get Your Feline Friend's Weight Back On-track
Your cat's breed, age, and lifestyle all make a big difference to their nutritional needs.
If you think that your cat may be overweight make an appointment to see your veterinarian. Your vet will assess your cat's current weight then let you know what your kitty's optimal weight is and how to help your cat reach a healthier weight range.
For cats that are just a little overweight, sticking to their regular food but simply reducing the size of each meal could get your kitty's weight back within healthy parameters.
If your cat needs to lose a significant amount of weight, it may be best to switch your pet over to a specialized food that is formulated to help cats achieve weight loss.
Unexplained Weight Gain
Has your cat has suddenly begun to put on weight without an obvious cause? Then it's time to see your vet! Unexplained weight gain can be a symptom of an underlying health issue that requires urgent care.
Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.