How to put your cat on a diet

If your cat's beginning to have trouble getting in and out of the cat flap, perhaps it’s time to put them on a diet!

06 Oct 2016 By Zahra Gaitskell Comments

Our feline friends can be notoriously fussy eaters but putting your cat on a diet doesn't have to be difficult.

The first step to putting your cat on a diet is to assess what they're currently eating and whether they are getting their nutritional needs. Your vet can help with this process, mapping out your cat’s weight and making a plan to get them on the right track. Healthy cats needs a mix of protein, fats, vitamins, minerals and water. Contrary to popular belief (and many store bought pet foods) cats do not need carbohydrates in their diet.

The best nutrition will come from animal proteins with the addition of some vegetables and fruits with no added preservatives. If you have time to make your cat’s food from scratch you can control what goes into your purring pal’s food, if not check the nutritional content and quality of foods you purchase. If you feed your cat dry food, be aware that it doesn’t provide as much water content as wet cat food so you’ll need to ensure your cat gets enough water to prevent dehydration.

The next step is to tailor your cat’s diet to their needs. The more exercise your kitty gets, the more food they will need, plus over the winter months a little more food might be necessary. Gradually decrease portion size to the appropriate level to get your cat used to their new meal size and provide water with each meal. You can still give treats, just keep them small and portion controlled or you risk undoing all your good work.

Some cats have a tendency to wander the neighbourhood, so if you think your cat is getting meals elsewhere make every effort to keep them indoors around mealtime. If you have multiple pets, separate them at feeding time and remove the bowls immediately when they're done. This will prevent one gorging on the other’s food!

While you're at it you can always encourage your cat to get more exercise. Make an effort to play and spend time with your cat in active pursuits. Soon you'll have a happier and healthier kitty!

06 Oct 2016 By Zahra Gaitskell Comments

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