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Is your cat harder to pick up than she used to be? Is Fluffy getting, well, rather round? If so, your furry friend may be overweight or even obese! Here, an Ashburn, VA vet discusses feline obesity.
In some cases, it can be pretty obvious when a kitty is pudgy. However, with some cats, especially fluffy ones, it can be hard to tell. Ask your vet about your cat’s weight. However, in the meantime, here’s a quick test you can do at home. Try to feel Fluffy’s ribs. If you can’t feel them at all, you may have a furry little butterball on your hands. If you can barely feel them, your kitty may be at or near her idea weight. If your cat’s ribs stick out, she may be underweight.
Obese cats face some very serious health issues, such as heart disease, diabetes, respiratory problems, skin trouble, and liver and kidney issues. Kitties that are overweight also have elevated risks of developing painful bone/joint issues, such as arthritis or hip dysplasia.
Some of our feline patients have their owners firmly wrapped around their paws when it comes to food. Is Fluffy getting chubby, but constantly meowing for more food? You may be doing more harm than good by indulging her! Ask your vet for specific advice, including serving sizes and suitable treats. Let professional advice, not your furball’s cute pleas, determine the menu.
Fluffy’s activity levels also play a role in her overall weight. Keep your kitty active by offering her lots of fun toys to bat around, and spending a few minutes each day playing with her. Your feline pal will also benefit from having some pet furniture that encourages her to jump and climb, such as a cat tower or activity center.
Has your furball turned into a butterball? Be sure to consult your vet before making any changes to your cat’s diet. Just like people, kitties must lose weight slowly and steadily to drop pounds without compromising their health. Never put Fluffy on a crash diet: this is very bad for kitty metabolism, and could make your cat very sick!
Do you have questions or concerns about your pet’s health or care? Contact us, your local Ashburn, VA pet hospital, today!