What Suggestions Do You Have To Encourage My Cat Get More Exercise
In an ideal world, we would take a jog with our cats, but we certainly do not live in that world. Getting our cats to engage in aerobic activity is not just difficult – it goes against their very nature. Cats were not designed to function as scavengers and cooperative hunters the way humans and dogs evolved. Instead, cats evolved as stalkers who expended very little energy in seeking their prey and seldom strayed far from their territory. When cats come across prey, they burst into an intensely anaerobic and short-duration pursuit. Most wild cats pursue their prey at top speed for less than a minute. Once this activity is complete, they require hours to recover for the next hunt.
Our domestic cats are simply smaller versions of these wild felines. While we may take our dogs out for a brisk walk or jog, few cats are interested in this sort of activity. Cats prefer the hundred-yard dash to the marathon. To complicate matters further, cats have evolved to eat a diet based on meat as opposed to humans and dogs that can get their nutritional needs from a combination of vegetables and meats.
“Since cats are obligate carnivores, the dietary rules for people do not apply.”
Since cats are obligate carnivores , the dietary rules for people do not apply. Many cats will lose weight more effectively on a high protein, low carbohydrate diet for this reason.
You will need to use your ingenuity and creativity to convince your chunky cat to get more exercise. Some simple ideas include:
Merrick Purrfect Bistro Grain
If youre looking for a high-quality wet cat food made with a novel source of protein, try this Merrick Purrfect Bistro Grain-Free Rabbit Pate Canned Food. This recipe features real, protein-rich rabbit as the main ingredient to deliver a powerful punch of protein and flavor. This recipe also contains chicken and chicken liver for supplemental protein as well as a healthy blend of grain-free carbohydrates to ensure digestibility. This recipe is made with dried cranberries and flaxseed to provide plenty of fiber for healthy digestion as well as nutritional support to balance out the vitamin and chelated mineral supplements. It contains a moderate level of fat with high moisture, and it comes in several other flavors if your cat happens to be sensitive to chicken.
- Pros: Real rabbit as first ingredient, wholesome, high-quality ingredients, limited carbohydrate and fat content, chelated minerals, blend of omega fatty acids for healthy skin and coat
- Cons: Contains chicken ingredients , could be higher in protein
Best Overall Cat Food
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How To Tell If The Low Carb Food Is Working
Most cats will reach their goal weight between six to eight months. In the case of feline diabetes, you should monitor blood sugar levels at home or at the vet and keep track of frequency of urination, appetite, weight and water consumption. With diet and insulin, you might be able to lower the insulin dosages for your cat. They may even go into remission, which means they still have diabetes but a controlled version of it.
Why Is My Cat Fat
Put simply, the reason your cat is fat is that its eating more calories than its burning off. This problem is more common among house cats because they tend to be less mobile if not stimulated properly. If your cat is leading a lazy, sedentary lifestyle, it wont lose any weight. Just like us, the best way for cats to overcome obesity is through dieting and exercise.
By controlling how much and what type of your feline eats, this will help stave off your obese cats ever-increasing calorie count. Then, by introducing natural exercise into your cats lifestyle, your overweight cat will start to gradually become more active and burn calories quicker. It may sound like an obvious answer, but this winning combination is the most effective way to reduce your cats weight.
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Is Wet Cat Food More Fattening Than Dry Cat Food
As we mentioned earlier, wet cat food has more water than dry cat food, so it is lower in calories. Wet cat food provides your cat with 0.8 1.5 kcal/g, while dry cat food gives from 3 to 4 kcal/g. Choosing the best wet cat food for weight loss will help your cats health on many levels, not just the healthy weight loss.
Should You Consider Prescription Weight Loss Cat Food
A prescription diet for pets is one formulated to address a specific problem and generally requires a veterinarians prescription to purchase. Youre probably familiar with some of the top brands of prescription cat food like Hills Prescription Diet and Royal Canin Veterinary Diet. Before you spend a small fortune on prescription weight loss cat food, take the time to learn what youre actually buying.
Before you purchase a bag of cat food, you probably check the label to see what ingredients are used in the product. At least, if you dont do this already, you definitely should! When you check the ingredients for Royal Canin and Hills products, youll see a number of problems right away.
For many of these recipes, the first ingredient is an animal by-product or not a source of protein at all. These formulas are very expensive, but they make heavy use of low-quality ingredients and fillers. This leads us to wonder how much the veterinarians who recommend these products actually know about pet nutrition. The problem is that pets tend to love these products. Filled with artificial flavors and other additives to improve taste and palatability, it is no wonder these products are popular with pets but if you took a moment to gauge the products quality for yourself, you would put it back on the shelf.
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Macronutrient Profiles Of Weight Control High Protein & Indoor Formulas
We looked at 280 cat foods labeled weight control, high protein, and indoor formula to find out a bit more about how they balance protein, fat, and fiber.
Because foods can fit in more than one of the labels, the final values we took came from 121x Indoor Formula foods , 127x High Protein Formula foods , and 109x Weight Control Formula foods .
Note: Wet food is typically higher in dry matter basis protein than dry food. We were careful to get a fair balance of wet/dry for each formula to get a fair estimation.
To compare protein, fat, and fiber values found on dry food packaging to the ones you see on wet food packaging you need to take moisture out of the equation. What youre left with is a dry matter basis value that can be compared fairly.
Thankfully, all AAFCO approved cat foods are required to show minimum crude protein and crude fat levels, along with the maximum values of crude fiber and moisture. Thats all we need to get a good estimation.
Lets break protein, fat, and fiber content down to see how the three formulas compare.
Comparing Crude Protein
Protein is very important and should make up the bulk of what cats consume, but more isnt always better. Domestic cats diets have slightly deviated from that of feral cats , but their ideal macronutrient ratios still maintain a very similar balance.
Its impossible to put an exact number on the amount of protein your cat requires, but recommendations generally range between 30% and 50% on a dry matter basis.
What Cats Actually Want To Eat
Studies on both indoor, commercially-fed cats, and feral and stray cats show that cats will self-select food sources that result in a macronutrient profile in this range :
- Protein: 52-63%
- Carbohydrate: 2.8-12%
What we believe this shows is that cats have evolved to thrive on a high protein, moderate fat, and low carb diet.
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Chicken Soup Weight And Mature Care Cat Food
Many cats put on weight as they get older and become less active. This canned food formula is designed to help your cat achieve and maintain a healthy body weight in their golden years. If your cat enjoys wet food, this ocean fish and poultry pâté will likely appeal to them.
Chicken Soup Weight and Mature Care Cat Food
Theres lots of flavor and texture in this pâté designed for less active, mature cats.
Tips For Helping A Cat Lose Weight
You should monitor portion sizes and adjust them according to how your cats weight changes. If they continue to gain weight, its best to lower it slowly until their weight becomes more manageable.
Weve listed the recommended portion sizes for the best weight loss results for a few of the cat foods above.
If youre someone whos used to free-feeding your cat then you should look to change that habit.
If you are out of the house a lot, you can make use of an automatic feeder that will dispense food at a certain set time. Having a scheduler should prevent overfeeding while ensuring they get fed at an appropriate time of day.
Consider utilizing an interactive feeder to make mealtimes more of a challenge. While it may seem like an annoyance, cats need both mental and physical stimulation, so making them work for their food can provide them with both.
It should also slow them down a bit, leading them to feel satisfied from a meal rather than scoffing it all down in a matter of seconds. And it encourages them to exercise, burning off calories.
Play with your cat. There are plenty of exciting and engaging toys out there that you can enjoy with your cat and keep them active and moving in the process. You should aim to get them moving and chasing for between 20 to 30 minutes each day.
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How Much Should You Feed Your Cat For Weight Loss
There are two ways to determine how much to feed a cat for weight loss. The first way is to switch your cat to a reduced calorie food and continue feeding him roughly the same volume of food you were feeding him before. By reducing the calorie content of your cats food instead of the volume, hell still feel satisfied, but his total daily calorie intake will be lower.
The second way to decide how much to feed a cat for weight loss is to look at the feeding recommendations on your current cat food and see how much the package recommends for your cats goal weight then feed that amount. If your cat needs to lose more than 3% of his body weight, however, you may want to start scaling back his daily portion slowly.
What To Look For In Cat Food For Weight Loss
The first thing to realize is that cats can lose weight on any food. Weight loss is a result of cats expending more calories than they consume, explains veterinarian Georgina Ushi-Phillips. While all foods will require an overall caloric deficit, cat weight loss foods can make this process easier for both cats and cat parents. When looking at calories, be sure to compare wet food to wet food, and dry food to dry food. Thats because the moisture content affects the weight and calories are calculated on a per weight basis.
Carefully read labels and look for important certifications when deciding which brand is right for your cat. A good starting point is to look for higher fiber diets,” adds Dr. Ushi-Phillips. “Increased fiber will help cats feel more full and because of the way fiber is digested, pet parents can typically give more food as well. That means everyone will be happier.
It’s always a good idea to consult with yourveterinarian for the key attributes to look for to support your individual cats weight issues. Be prepared to try more than one to find just the right fit for your overweight feline.
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Hills Science Diet Adult Perfect Weight Food
This wonderful savory chicken-based diet cat food from Hills Science Diet has been a huge hit with owners of overweight cats. Despite being marketed as perfect for cats of all weights, its effectiveness as a weight loss food is what were interested in. A dry-matter protein content of almost 40.0% is very good indeed for a kibble based cat food, meaning you can expect your cat to lean up while retaining muscle.
At a mere 300 kcal/cup, its clearly a food formulated from the ground up with weight loss in mind. Your cat will feel satisfied despite having consumed far fewer calories than they would from a regular formula. At the time of writing, 98% of reviewers on Chewy would recommend this food which speaks volumes about its effectiveness.
Benefits Of Feeding A Low Carbohydrate And High Protein Diet
There are several benefits that come with feeding your cat this type of diet. If you’re searching for reasons to make the switch, we invite you to take a look at our list below.
- Energy Boost –Protein can give your cat a much-needed energy boost that can help to keep them active, even as they age. This can help to keep them lean and at a healthy weight throughout their lives.
- Fewer Digestive Issues – Your cat’s body can’t digest higher levels of carbohydrates, and it can lead to things like diarrhea, throwing up, gas, and general discomfort. Feeding them a diet that their body is designed to absorb and use is one way to alleviate these issues.
- Good Development – Your cat’s body needs several key things to develop all of their systems and keep them healthy. Protein ensures healthy muscle growth, fats ensure that your cat’s skin and coat and healthy, and fewer carbohydrates ensure that your cat’s digestive system will extract as many nutrients as possible.
- Reduced Blood Sugar Levels – Foods that are carbohydrate-rich can cause your cat’s blood sugar levels to spike and stay high. Your cat’s body may not be able to handle these spikes, and it can lead to diabetes.
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Mackerel Recipe For Senior Cats
Fish is an excellent source of fatty yet nutritional oils for cats. When we think of their love for fish, tuna might be the first swimmer to pop into our heads, but mackerel is a much healthier option. This recipe would be a great treat for a senior cat once or twice a week to ensure they get their fill of the healthy fats mackerel provides! Sardines are another great alternative if you are looking to swap mackerel occasionally.
Whats The Best Kind Of Food For Diabetic Cats
The best food for diabetic cats honors your carnivorous cats dietary requirements.
As obligate carnivores, cats thrive on nutrients derived from animals. They cant survive without the amino acids, fatty acids, and micronutrients naturally found in their prey.
What your cats natural diet doesnt have is large concentrations of carbohydrates. A wild feline diet may have as little as zero carbohydrate matter. What little carbohydrate or fiber their diet might contain would come from nibbles of grass and digested plant matter found in the digestive tracts of their prey.
Compared to dogs and other omnivores, cats have a much more limited ability to digest plant matter. But it goes further than that a cats physiology isnt designed to digest heavy carbohydrate loads.
For example, cats lack salivary amylase . Further down the digestive tract, cats have levels of the digestive enzymes necessary to break down carbohydrates in the small intestine.
To put those details together, cats have a limited ability to metabolize large glucose loads. Even healthy, non-diabetic cats exhibit mild insulin resistance.
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And While The Wrong Diet Puts Your Cat At Risk For Diabetes Choosing The Right Food Is Your Only Hope Of Curing It
Most diabetic cats who leave behind a biologically inappropriate diet see significant reductions in their insulin requirements. Many actually go into remission and no longer need insulin injections.
The best time to clean up your cats diet is before he shows symptoms of diabetes. As diabetes progresses, the pancreas may become exhausted and stop secreting insulin. In this case, theres no hope of remission and insulin therapy becomes a life-long commitment. As the saying goes, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
Fortunately, for anyone trying to wean their diabetic cat off the wrong food, rest assured that diabetic cats usually have a ravenous appetite. Hunger is often enough to force a picky diabetic cat to try something new.
Is Iams Cat Food Being Discontinued
Recently, IAMS made the decision to discontinue it’s brand of wet cat food called IAMS Purrfect Delights. This included all flavors and styles, including flaked and pate. Not only do the reviews show that many cats are not interested in Purrfect Portions, but many people are having issues with the actual container.
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