Feline obesity is a real problem. Even though it might seem like an easy one to identify, some cat owners are still unsure, and even less so when it comes to solving the problem. Here are some ways to tell if you cat is obese and to remedy the problem once you’ve identified it.
How To Determine If My Cat Is Overweight
Pet Education informs us that veterinarians use a scale from 1 to 9 when determining the condition of an animal’s body. Extreme skinniness is represented as a 1 and extreme obesity as a 9, with a healthy weight represented as a 5. The best way to identify if your cat is overweight is to use your senses and carefully consider your cat’s body. Look at some of the key structural points on your cat’s body (e.g., ribs, spin, shoulders, hips and base of tail, etc.) and feel around them. You should be able to feel the boney sections distinctly, with only a slight covering of fat over them. If you cannot feel the individual ribs, for example, then your cat is probably at least somewhat overweight.
What Are The Signs Of Cat Obesity?
Beyond the touch test, you should also give your cat a careful look over. Particularly, have a look at your cat from a bird’s eye view as well as at a profile. You’re looking for two important indicators: your cat’s waist (from above) and your cat’s abdominal tuck (from the side). Both of these areas should have a slight, but not severe, definition. This is a very good indication of your cat’s overall body condition. If your cat’s waist is wider than it’s ribs and hips (again, from above) or if you cat’s abdominal tuck is not present from a side view (i.e., your cat has a visible gut protruding equal to or beyond its ribs toward the ground), then you’re cat is overweight. You can better visualize this with the aid of the drawings provided by Pet Education.
My Cat Is Overweight, Now What?
Once you’ve determined that your cat is, indeed, overweight, you’ll want to consult your veterinarian. Feline obesity can be either a symptom or a cause of other health issues that you’ll want your vet to investigate. Then, with guidance from your vet, you may consider an appropriate weight loss regiment to return your cat to a health weight. It’s advised to be careful about drastic diet change, as it can aggravate health issues rather than improve your cat’s health. So, don’t panic if you find that your cat is overweight, but simply visit your local veterinarian and have them take a look.