For cat lovers, seeing a fat cat and likes to be lazy, might seem very funny. Unfortunately, just like humans, obesity in cats can be dangerous for health.
Be Aware, Here Is Statement from Experts
Association for Pet Obesity Prevention states, 60 percent of cats in the United States are overweight. including diabetes, bone disorders, and reduced life expectancy. Therefore, for cat owners who are obese, it is an obligation to encourage their cats to diet to be healthier. However, reducing cat weight is not an easy matter. Cats are known to be lazy and difficult to work out with. Not to mention, cat owners also know how fussy their beloved cat is if it hasn’t been fed.
In a study conducted by the University of Illinois, the United States, losing weight in cats turned out to have to reduce food portions gradually, not all at once.
This method has been successfully carried out in research by researchers. The eight cats who were declared obese finally reached their normal weight after a diet for 18 weeks with a gradual reduction in food over the course of eight weeks.
“The purpose of this diet is for cats to lose fat and lose weight,” said study author Kelly Swanson, lecturer. zoology and nutrition at the University of Illinois, in a press release published by his university: “If cats lose weight too quickly, they can develop liver disease. We are aiming for a 1.5 percent weight loss every month. This is different from American recommendation. Hospital Association (recommended 0.5 to 2 percent per week). ”
Body Condition Score of Fat Cat
Calculating Body Condition Score (BCS) The eight cats participating in the study, all-male and neutered, live together in a large room. They enter the cage only at mealtime.
Their health is closely monitored. The researchers also monitored their weight, physical activity, bacteria in the stomach, blood conditions, and body condition (BCS). Overweight cats will have a BCS of between 8 or 9. Meanwhile, a low BCS indicates a malnourished cat. In this study, the average study cat had a BCS of 7.5 and was targeted to drop by a score of 5.
These cats ate a high-fiber diet for four weeks, then a balanced protein diet. In the first week, their food was reduced by 20 percent. Then reduce it continuously for eight weeks and from week 10 the food portions are maintained to maintain body weight. According to Swanson, a gradual reduction in food portions can help achieve ideal body weight each week.
“Just like humans, if animals diet, they lose weight in the first week, but after that, there is no continuation,” said Swanson.
How to Reduce Its Weight?
However, convincing animal owners to reduce food for their animals can be difficult. Because animal owners usually cut back on large amounts of cat food, after eighteen weeks, the average cat’s BCS score had decreased from 7.5 to e6. In addition, the percentage of body fat was reduced from 41 percent to 31 percent, and the concentration of triglyceride fats, the fat that causes stroke and heart disease, was also reduced. For their activity levels, there was no change in cat activity, aka they remained lazy as usual despite their weight already down.
A fat cat seems adorable indeed. But just like humans, obese cats can harm their health. Your cat is too fat too? Check out the tips for managing it as reported by She Knows below.
Cats are meat-eaters. This means that this one animal cannot be fed with only corn or rice. Try reading cat food labels and make sure it has meat in it. Usually, good quality cat food contains less unhealthy additives.
Dry vs Wet
Some cat owners prefer to feed their pets dry food. While others choose wet. Actually the choice is yours. Importantly, cat food must be nutritious, contain water, and be liked by cats.
Do not leave food anywhere the cat can reach. Limit the portions properly. Because cats will ‘snack’ at will if the food can be reached, even though they are not actually hungry.
How do cats exercise? You have to play with them! Force the cat to want to chase toy mice, lasers, balls, or other toys. Just play with the cat for 20 minutes every day. Not only thin, but cats will also avoid stress.
Never share food with a cat. Because in addition to being harmful, the ingredients contained in human food can also lead to being overweight in cats. Get in the habit of getting your cat to only enjoy its own food and not take what you have.