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Skinny cats.....question.

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
My cat Lucy has always been small, but lately she just seems smaller than ever. Her bones are pretty pronounced, I can feel her ribs with ease, same with her back bone and shoulder blades.

Nothing else seems wrong though. She is about 7 years old, she eats and drinks normally. She is not an active cat though.

We plan on taking her to the vet, but is there a better food we could be giving her?

Are some cats just normally thin?
post #2 of 16
Some cats have a leaner, longer build (i.e compare a Persian to a Siamese for two totally different body types), but while it's normal to feel just a covering over the ribs, you should not see the shoulders or hips protruding, or see the outline of the ribs and/or vertebrae..that would be too thin.

An exam sounds like a good thing to do to be on the safe side. What food are you currently feeding her? Is she an indoor kitty only or are parasites a possibility?
post #3 of 16
A trip to the vet is a good idea and bloodwork would be a great idea too. some cats can be on the thin side, but bones should not be prominant, so I suspect something is going on there. What are you feeding her?
post #4 of 16
Thread Starter 
I was just reading another thread here about cat weight and I just weighed Lucy and she weighs 8 pounds. So maybe im overreacting. None of her bones are visible...but I can feel them.

She is a strictly indoor cat. We feed her meow mix, we have TRIED feeding her better food and she refuses. But we started feeding her the meow mix pouches of wet food and the ingredients are pretty pure protein. She acts like im giving her lunch meat when she eats that.

Anyway....if you guys have any more advice on better foods I could try...that would be great. Im willing to try anything.
post #5 of 16
I have had good luck with Nutro pet foods.
post #6 of 16
Switching your cat over to a high-quality canned food takes time (and patience!). They can get really addicted to the low quality stuff, especially the dry food.

Keep trying! Add a very small amount (maybe just a 1/4 teaspoon) of the food you want her to eat to the food she likes. Very gradually increase the amount of new food as you decrease the old.

It may seem like it takes forever to make the switch, but be determined - better food will keep her healthier. Try several high-quality brands, you may luck out and she'll eat it immediately!!!
post #7 of 16
Some cats are smaller than others, T-Roy is the smallest cat I own, even among the Orientals, he is very small and probably doesn't even weigh 8 lbs. That is just him though, he eats like a cow (loves people food, and I mean LOVES, he needs to be locked up at meal time), but he is just a very small, refined, petite boy. For a petite girl 8 lbs is a very good weight. I would still check with the vet, since it did raise your concern.

As far as diet goes, meow mix isn't a good food. Try mixing a little bit of good quality food into her meow mix, slowly increase the amount until it is all good food. Meow mix is candy as far as cats go, it tastes good but its not a healthy diet. Brands like Science Diet, Purina One, Iams, Royal Canin, and Nutro are good. I think Royal Canin is probably the best tasting, my cats go crazy for it. My cats don't like Iams. Buy a small bag, you might be able to get a trial size bag for Science Diet from your vet. Find something she likes. As far as canned food goes, try the higher quality brands, I don't like Iams or Science Diet canned foods (rather my cats don't seem to like them) but Iams does have a new pouch food which is jucier and the cats may like more.
post #8 of 16
Thread Starter 
I always thought it wasn't that bad of a food since it was at least a Purina brand.

Ill start to switch over for sure.

Is there any specific brand you suggest for 2 indoor kitties. 1 is 2 years old, and Lucy is 7.
post #9 of 16
Thread Starter 
Also, ive tried some of the higher end meaty pouch foods and they don't like them, but they go crazy for the meow mix hook line and sinker flavor.

Should I switch this just because its a meow mix product?

The ingredients actually looked better than some of the higher brands.

Here are the top ingredients in this pouch....in order.

Tuna, fish broth, sardine, tuna liver, red snapper, ocean fish, and so on.....

What do you guys think?
post #10 of 16
Bonny - High quality brands I'm using now with my 3 indoor kitties (ages 4, 10, 16)are Petguard, Wellness (which some members avoid since it contains a trace amount of garlic), and California Natural. All of these brands make both dry and canned food.
I use the canned for meals, and the dry (California Natural) in very small amounts only as an occasional treat.

Brands that are available at supermarkets are inferior quality. Unfortunately, I wouldn't recommend either the dry or canned Science Diet. It's a lower quality food at a high quality price. You don't want any food that contains by-products, corn, wheat, artificial preservatives or colors. Science Diet and Iams contain several of these ingredients.

For really good brands you'll have to go to a large pet supply store, like Petsmart, a health food store (Whole Food Market carries Wellness and Petguard), or order online. Whatever food you try, make sure to read the label to avoid inferior ingredients.
post #11 of 16
You've had some great responses...I'll just add that the following are the kinds of ingredients/formulas to avoid.

Any food where the first ingredients are by-products, animal digest, grains such as ground corn, brewers rice...you want to see meat/fish/poultry as the first ingredients, and preferably NO animal digest or by-products, no use of BHA/BHT for preservatives, no sugars/corn syrup etc., no colorings, no formulas of wheat flour, soy, corn gluten meal as the protein source.

Great brands - nutro natural choice, petguard, felidae, chicken soup for the cat lovers soul, innova, california natural, natural balance has a neat venison and green pea dry that looks wonderful re ingredients list.

hth,
post #12 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by KTLynn
Switching your cat over to a high-quality canned food takes time (and patience!). They can get really addicted to the low quality stuff, especially the dry food.

Keep trying! Add a very small amount (maybe just a 1/4 teaspoon) of the food you want her to eat to the food she likes. Very gradually increase the amount of new food as you decrease the old.

It may seem like it takes forever to make the switch, but be determined - better food will keep her healthier. Try several high-quality brands, you may luck out and she'll eat it immediately!!!
I ditto this big time took three weeks to change over my "sister"
post #13 of 16
Some cats, just like us humans, are naturally tiny. There's tiny cats, bony cats, fat cats, scrawny cats, short cats, long cats.

As cats age, they lose muscle mass, and their bones are more pronounced. I can feel Snickers ribs & especially his spine underneath all his long fur; he's lost a lot of muscle mass over the years.

I have two girlcats who are naturally tiny. Dusty & K.C. both are only 6 pounds, but they are healthy. And then I have the behemoth Zorro who is so large, everything about him is large.

Boniness in a 7 yr old cat sounds odd, I'd get her to the Vet for tests. You never know when an illness might pop up!
post #14 of 16
Thread Starter 
Thanks everyone for the great advice.

Here is a photo of my two kitties taken the other day. Lucy is in the front, and Pixie is my porky black kittie.

post #15 of 16
My vet was actually surprised when I asked about getting my big kitties on diets, because most owners would have thought them to be the normal weight. (13, 16, and 18 pounds.) Anything less than 12 pounds and people are concerned about their cats being too thin, when they're actually at their ideal weight.

However, the fact that you mention she's just recently lost the weight even though nothing has changed in her activity level or food, makes me a little concerned. If it were me, I'd call and get her in to the vet, just to make sure it isn't something serious. Cats usually only give small signs as to when their ill or just not feeling well.
post #16 of 16
Thread Starter 
She actually hasn't lost any weight, but she just FEELS so bony. We are taking her in tomorrow though. I have a good feeling everything will be ok.
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