Cat Adoption Team

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Does this collar make me look fat

Okay, so a collar won’t make your cat look fat. However, are you making your cat fat?

Humans are in control of what pets eat and too many of us are making our pets fat by indulging in too much wet food, too many treats, table scraps, and little activity.

When I look around the shelter this January morn, I see some very large cats (Monroe, Dina, Lotus, and Violet to name a few). Now many are truly big boned - the ones who might have Maine Coon in their blood line; however, many are just plain fat.

National Pet Obesity Awareness Day Study found approximately 53 percent of cats and 55 percent of dogs were overweight or obese. Obesity is the number one nutritional disorder among dogs and cats, making them susceptible to many health problems, including:

• Reduced life span
• Impaired heart, liver, breathing functions
• Digestive disturbances
• Increased surgical risk
• Skin problems
• Heat stress
• Increased diabetes risk

Yikes - just looking at that list should spur you to make a change for the betterment of your pet!

Here at the shelter, the staff veterinarians are able to prescribe diets to help many of the cats who are overweight. Some, however, just need to NOT get the wet food and TO get more physical exercise.

There is even a veterinarian association dedicated to raising awareness of obesity in pets. No kidding. The Association for Pet Obesity Prevention has information on how to check if your pet is overweight, the ideal weight for your pet, and the caloric content of pet

They created a video to help you take your pet’s measurements to help figure out if your cat is, well, fat.

So, what does an obese cat look like? 

A kitty who is 19 pounds when ideal weight 10 pounds. This is like a 5’4” female adult weighing 276 pounds (131 pounds over maximum normal weight of 145 pounds) or 5’9” male weighing 321 pounds (152 pounds over maximum normal weight of 169 pounds).

Please ask your veterinarian about your cat’s healthy weight and what steps to take to get him or her to that weight. Why? Just go back up to that list about the risks.

by Kathy Covey

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