Cat obesity is on the rise due to a variety of reasons. Here at Ultracat we introduced our Metabolic range to aid your cat in losing weight.
Obesity increases the risk for :
- Diabetes Mellitus
- Heart disease
- Certain types of cancer
- FLUTDS ( Feline lower urinary tract disease)
Your road to a healthy normal weight cat starts now. Find below helpful tips and tricks to use:
How to introduce my cat to the new food?
Cats are fussy eaters and it may take quite a while to introduce them to the new food.
Doing the following steps will help to ease them into eating the new food.
- Offer small amounts of the new diet in a separate bowl. If your cat is a finicky eater it may take 2-3 weeks for your cat to decide to eat it.
- Once your cat is eating the new diet, start by mixing ¼ of the new diet with ¾ of the old diet for two to four days.
- Increase to half-and-half for another two to four days
- Then give ¾ of the new diet mixed with ¼ of the old diet for a final three to five days
- Switch to the new diet
How to let cats get more exercise?
In an ideal world, we would take a jog with our cats, but we certainly do not live in that world. Getting our cats to engage in aerobic activity is not just difficult – it goes against their very nature. Cats were not designed to function as scavengers and cooperative hunters the way humans and dogs evolved. Instead, cats evolved as stalkers who expended very little energy in seeking their prey and seldom strayed far from their territory. When cats come across prey, they burst into an intensely anaerobic and short-duration pursuit. Most wild cats pursue their prey at top speed for less than a minute. Once this activity is complete, they require hours to recover for the next hunt.
The challenge is huge, and owners will require a lot of creativity:
- Moving the food bowl to different locations in the house, such as upstairs or downstairs and rotate it so that the cat always has to walk to get to its food bowl. Cats are smart and if the food bowl moves upstairs, they will move upstairs to find it.
- Moving the food bowl as far away from your cat’s favorite haunts as possible. Again, many overweight cats will sleep and lounge around near the food bowl, so they do not have to go far to get a snack.
- Better yet – do not use a cat bowl for any dry food! Invest in special ‘feeding balls’ that require your cat to roll them around in order to get pieces of food as a ‘reward’. With these interactive objects, you fill them with a specific amount of dry food, and it is up to the cat to work at getting the food out! You can also throw their food to them to make them chase it at mealtimes.
- Set aside play times for your cat. Use feather toys, laser pointers, paper or foil balls, or anything else that your cat finds interesting to chase. There is a few interesting Apps to try on the Apple store and Android store that cats would like to increase their activity. Try to play with your cat for ten minutes twice a day. You can do this while you eat, watch television, or even read. Some of the numerous toys that move, and squeak may be entertaining to your cat. For many cats, variety is important, since what is exciting today may be boring tomorrow. Make sure to follow up any laser pointer play with a small treat as some cats get frustrated not catching anything.
How often should my cat come in for a recheck or weigh-in?
Visits to the vet is quite stressful for most cats. Investing in a scale to track the weight loss yourself will be better. Cats need to lose weight slowly. Weight loss that occurs faster than this can result in severe liver disease (hepatic lipidosis or fatty liver syndrome)..
When my cat is hungry, she pesters me until I feed her. Do you have any suggestions?
It is often easier to give in to the cat that wakes you at four in the morning to be fed or the cat that meows incessantly or head butts you until you feed them. These cats have trained us well and know exactly which buttons to press when it comes to getting their way. Here are some tips for handling the pesky Persian or the insatiable Siamese:
- Do not use a self-feeder. While this seems obvious, auto-feeders are nothing more than unlimited candy machines to an overweight cat.
- If you do use an automatic feeder, use one that opens with a timer. This way you can measure out the proper amount and divide it into daily meals.
- Pet your cat or play with her when she begs for food. Many cats substitute food for affection so flip the equation and you may find that playtime displaces mealtime.
- Feed small meals frequently – especially give a last feeding for those cats that like to wake you up in the wee hours begging for more goodies – divide the total volume or calories into four to six smaller meals. Whatever you do, do not feed extra food.
- Offer fresh water instead of food. If your cat is eyeing the empty food bowl, a drink of cold, fresh water may satisfy that craving.
I have more than one cat, but only one is overweight. How can I feed them different foods?
While you may come up with more creative solutions to this problem, here are a few suggestions to start:
- Feed the cats separately – this is the ideal solution for multi-cat households. Feed the overweight cat her diet in one room while feeding the other cat her food elsewhere. After allowing them to eat for a specific time, generally fifteen to thirty minutes, remove any uneaten food until the next feeding.
- Feed the normal weight cat up high where the overweight cat cannot go.
- Depending on the size discrepancy between your cats, you can devise different ways to allow the smaller cat access to food where the larger cat cannot fit. You can use a safety chain or hook and eye closure on a door, so the door opens just enough for the thin cat to get in. Alternatively, you can use a large box and cut two small doors in it to allow the smaller cat in to eat.
- There are now commercial feeding stations that only open when it recognizes your cat’s microchip!
- Never leave food out while you are away. You cannot control who eats what when you are not around.
How long will my cat need to be on a diet?
Most cats will achieve their ideal weight within six to eight months. If the process is taking longer than this, something needs to be changed.
For most cats, the secret to weight loss is a dedicated, committed, and concerned family. Cats do not understand that their excess weight is causing them harm. It is up to us as good stewards to protect them from harm and not inadvertently contribute to their premature death or development of debilitating diseases. Together, you and your veterinary healthcare team can help your cat achieve a healthy body weight and condition safely and successful