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Jake is overweight...any tips on how to get him to his normal weight??

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
I weighed him yesterday and he weighs about 19 pounds now!! He is going to be 1 year old in November...He doesn't look that bad, he is big boned but still he has a belly and when he lies on his stomach you can see the fat on his sides...
When he is standing up walking around he looks pretty normal...
I don't know what to do. I am feeding him exactly according to guidelines from now on, i was sort of free feeding kibble which was a huge mistake. I got him batteries for the laser toy and we played a lot today hopefully he burned some fat off...
Any suggestions???
post #2 of 6
Instead of following the guidelines of how much to feed that is on the food bag/can do it by how many calories Jake needs.

I am sure someone else can tell you how to figure out how many calories Jake needs. Then you figure out how much food he needs based on the calories in the food.

Canned food is best for wieght loss also.
post #3 of 6
DID a VET state that JAKE is Overwt if no then I suggest checking with the vet ... some cats are over 20lbs and not fat
post #4 of 6
Thread Starter 
No a vet hasn't said he's overweight but I'm looking at this chart

And Jake is around 6/7. A vet hasn't said anything because he was last at the vet when he was 4 months old to get neutered so a vet hasn't really seen him...he is due again in late november for an annual exam.
post #5 of 6
There are several things you can do to help your cat get back down to a healthy weight.

The first thing you want to do is get Jake a check up. Your vet can tell you how much he needs to lose, and how long it should take for him to reach his healthy weight. It is very dangerous for an overweight cat to lose weight too fast.

There are special prescription foods that are very high in protein, 50% I think, that your vet may want to prescribe. These high protein foods should only be fed under your vet's supervision, and are not meant for long term use. Not all cats need these.

If no special food is required, he should be on as high a quality of food as you can afford. Avoid foods with a lot of grains and by-products listed under the ingredients. A meat protein should be the first listed ingredient, and a meat meal the second.

Once you have a diet plan to follow, it is also important for him to get plenty of exercise. Sometimes a cat that is not used to a lot of vigorous play will be slow to get motivated. Don't give up though, because as he loses, he'll feel more energetic and want to move more.

The more a cat plays, the more he'll want to play. Interactive games are very important. Pay close attention, he will show you what he likes best.

I advise getting down on the floor with him every night at about the same time. He may not seem interested at first, but after a week or two he'll come to realize that this is a very special time for him and you, and he'll look forward to Game Time with you.

Offer a variety of games, don't become discouraged if he isn't lively right away. For instance, try to play Chase the Crumpled Paper for two or thee days in a row. If he's still not interested, the next night try a wand toy Game. (aka String On A Stick). A few days later bring out the Crumpled Paper again. And so on.

Cardboard Box Forts and Paper Bag Forts and Newspaper Tents can help stimulate his imagination, too. (interactive games stimulate mentally as well as physically)

feeding up next...
post #6 of 6
Feeding: Scheduled meals are best. If you are feeding kibble, measure out the entire amount he is supposed to have in one day and keep in a separate container.. Feed from that only, during the day.

You can feed meal portions three times or five or six, whatever works best for your schedule. Say he's getting a half cup of kibble a day. Give him two 1 tablespoons servings in the morning half an hour apart. (there are about 5 tablespoons of kibble in one half cup)

Give another when his snack time is, but make a game out of it. Play Chase the Kibble Game. Toss a kibble for him and let him chase it down. Repeat. Do this with one of the one tablespoon servings. Maybe do that when you're busy in the kitchen. Keeps him occupied and not begging.

When you sit down to your meal, give him a meal, and save the last serving for after Games (before bed).

You can also sneak more exercise in by feeding him on something that involves a jump or two, to get to the dish, and a jump or two to get back down.

You can add a little water to some of his servings. This will not only slow him down (slower eating I mean), but also make him feel more filled up. Start with only a little, maybe a teaspoon of warmish water. If he tolerates that you might try a little more.

Don't leave any uneaten kibble with water added to sit, as bacteria will form after a while, and it won't stay good.

*if you are feeding canned food too, portions sizes will be adjusted to take that into consideration. half cup serving of kibble was used as an example only, your vet can tell you what to feed, and how much. Canned food is often recommended for cats who need to lose weight. Easier to add water to it, too.
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