It’s sometimes tempting to overfeed our cats, and because we see them daily, it’s tough to notice changes in their weight.
However, every cat owner wants to know the clear answer to the question, “How heavy should my cat be?” Or what their cat’s ideal weight should be?
It varies by breed, but for the majority of domestic cats, 10 pounds (4-4.5 kg) is an optimal weight. Certain bigger breeds can weigh up to 25 pounds (11 kilograms) and smaller types as low as 5 pounds (2.2 kg).
Obesity can significantly raise your cat’s chances of developing diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, and other health concerns. Similarly to underweight cats, malnutrition may occur. Therefore, keep your cat’s weight in check.
Why Is Weight Important?
When your cat is loitering around the treat canister, it’s simple to toss a few additional treats their way. However, eating too many calories might gradually add up to excess pounds, putting the body under extra stress. Overweight kitties are more likely to develop diabetes, pancreatitis, rheumatoid arthritis, and skin and joint issues. On the other hand, a balanced diet combined with a variety of cat-friendly activities may help your beloved companion enjoy the long and pleasant life they deserve!
How Much Weight Should My Cat Have?
Weight growth in cats can develop gradually over time, so it’s a good idea to monitor your cat’s weight on a regular basis. Several visual and tactile indicators that you might employ when spending time with your pets include the following:
- Optimal Weight: The ribs are not visible but are easily felt. The waist is evident but not too so, and the abdomen curves inward from the chest nicely.
- Underweight: Underweight cats’ ribs, vertebrae, and pelvis are visible. The abdomen is concave, and the entire body has a bony feel about it.
- Obese: Obese cats have a rounded belly with flank folds. You may be able to feel the ribs behind a layer of fat, or you may feel nothing at all.
How to Deal with an Obese Cat?
Unfortunately, assisting your cat in losing weight is not easy, and it is far preferable to prevent your kitty from being obese in the first place. Cats can get fatty liver disease quickly if you attempt to force them to shed weight too soon. Fatty liver disease impairs your cat’s capacity to process blood and has the potential to be fatal.
Four indicators that your cat is overweight:
- Ribs: Run your hands along the side of your cat. If you can feel their ribs and see a thin layer of fat covering them, your cat is a healthy weight. If you can’t readily feel your cat’s ribs, this indicates obesity.
- Abdomen: Take a side view of your cat. If you detect a coating of low-hanging fat on your cat, this might be an indication of obesity.
- Spine: Run your hands across the back of your cat. If you cannot readily feel bones behind a layer of fat on your cat, it is overweight.
- Waist: Take a bird’s eye view of your cat. If you cannot see your cat’s waist or the gap between their ribs and hips protrude, this indicates obesity.
How can I reduce an obese or overweight cat’s weight to that of a healthy cat?
Reduce the number of goodies you give them and avoid giving them human food entirely. Ascertain that your cat is eating the appropriate nutrition for their life stage. If necessary, a neutered or senior cat diet will allow for more precise calorie monitoring. If your cat is fat, discuss weight reduction diets with your veterinarian or certified veterinary nurse; these meals include the necessary proteins, vitamins, and minerals while lowering calories. Remember, when introducing a new meal into your cat’s diet, do so gradually over the period of roughly a week.
Additionally, exercise and enrichment are critical. Furthermore, puzzle feeders can be really beneficial. Making your kitty work for their food rather than just delivering it to them is more symbolic of the life cats would lead in the wild, and it will also keep their brains active while also helping them burn calories.
How to Deal with an Underweight Cat?
If your cat is underweight, begin by examining the food’s quality. Animal protein should be the primary component. Opt for meat or unprocessed protein over meals or highly processed protein. Additionally, it should have a modest quantity of good fats and relatively few carbohydrates. You might then consider providing them with some additional food. Cats are voracious eaters, and if your cat is very skinny despite adequate feeding, this might indicate that your kitty has a health problem that requires veterinary treatment. Dental disorders, intestinal parasites, diabetes, hyperthyroidism, and even poor nutrition can all contribute to your cat’s sudden weight loss.
We hope you enjoyed understanding this post and gained valuable information about whether or not your cat is within a healthy weight range. Most modern home cats are obese, and we need to address this critical problem. The best approach to keep your cat’s weight under control is through nutritious food and plenty of playing.