Facts About Fat Cats
There's no shortage of fat cats, but being obese puts just as much strain on their bodies as it does in humans. Overweight cats are prone to heart disease, arthritis, diabetes and more. Learn key facts about feline obesity. They're real eye openers.
A Downward Spiral
Once obesity sets in, a cat becomes less active. Less activity leads to further weight gain and even less mobility. It's a downward spiral that can lead to serious health problems.
Injuries Equal More Vet Time
Overweight cats are prone to injuries. Just like athletes, pets carrying excessive weight are more likely to experience joint problems and bouts of lameness brought on by physical movements that cats at an ideal weight take in stride.
Environment is a Factor
Although it's safer for a pet cat to live indoors, exercise is still important. Cats that live in apartments and smaller homes are often less active and prone to weight gain. Combat this by providing your cat with a cat tree for climbing and sessions of vigorous play with a cat wand or laser mouse.
Side-Effect of Altering
Neutering and spaying are beneficial for many reasons, but with less drive to find mates, many of these cats become sedentary and begin to put on more weight. This doesn't mean you shouldn't have your cat altered; you just need to make sure your cat is encouraged to exercise.
Higher Rate of Skin Problems
Being excessively fat makes it more difficult for cats to groom themselves. This can lead to a variety of skin problems and eventual hair loss.
Calories and Feeding Habits
Different types of cat food have different caloric values. Grocery store brands are typically less digestible, so you feed more to get adequate nutrition. Premium brands, especially prescription diets for health problems (excluding obesity), contain more calories. If you upgrade your cat's food but you don't cut back on the amount you feed, your cat will quickly gain weight.
Shortened Life Span
Obesity can significantly shorten a cat's life - sometimes by as much as half when obesity sets in early in life. So, it's important to pay attention to your cat's weight throughout his entire life and make efforts to head off obesity and preserve his health.
If you found this slideshow informative, visit Signs of a Sick Cat for more feline health facts.