Maintaining your cat’s weight is essential to keeping her healthy. She should be encouraged to move around often and eat the correct foods so she can have a healthy visit every time she sees the veterinarian.
Feeding cats is usually different from dogs in that owners will pour a bag of cat food into the bowl and consider the cat fed. This form of feeding is known as “free choice” feeding, meaning that the cat can eat whenever it wants to. This is actually an unnatural state of eating for a carnivorous animal, even if it has been domesticated. The best way to manage your cat’s weight is to get rid of the constantly-filled bowl and start offering small portions of appropriate cat food about two to four times throughout the day. Make sure these portions are an ounce at the most or your cat’s diet will be for naught.
Offer More Protein
Cats do not have the same metabolism or food-digesting enzymes as humans and even dogs. Cats cannot handle the amount of carbohydrates, usually in the form of grains, corn, and flour, that make up most dry cat foods. Cats should have a protein-heavy diet with minimal additives and little to no carbohydrates. Don’t settle for foods that market as “complete” and “balanced.” Look at the ingredient list for the maximum amount of protein.
Create Exercise Opportunities
Some pet owners may think it is impossible to make their cat exercise the same way they would their dog. This is a common misconception among pet owners. Cats can easily be led to exercise by having them chase a string, throwing a piece of paper, and giving them something to stalk around the house. Encouraging your cat to do these exercise habits daily will help manage her weight.
Horizon Animal Hospital is dedicated to keeping your pets healthy and happy. We offer all of our patients customized wellness plans in Scottsdale, AZ. Please call us at (480) 800-4559 to learn more.