Friday, October 10, 2008

Overweight Cats

First, my apologies for this long absence. I was caught up in deadline mania and failed to realize how long it had been since my last posting.

Today, I have good news and bad news. The good news is that Mittens, the Siamese with fungal infection of the sinuses who at one point was so emaciated that she was in danger of fatty liver disease, is most definitely out of the danger zone. The vet is elated with the cat's progress. She has to continue taking her medication for at least several more months, but she's definitely improving. She is so energetic now that she was galloping around the apartment the other day, keeping me from sleeping.

Now for the bad news. Mittens is officially overweight. She weighs 10 1/2 pounds, which is at least a pound and a half more than she should. The healthy weight range for adult cats is 7 to 9 pounds. If your cat is a bigger sized cat -- like a Maine Coon -- then you have more leeway. My neighbor CJ has a cat who's exceptionally long. He weighs 14 pounds but does not look fat.

But Mittens. Alas. She is a small-boned cat so every ounce she gains shows. I was so eager to fatten her up that I'm afraid I went overboard.

Some people think that overweight cats are cute but in fact it's not healthy. Just like with people, overweight is not healthy.

I'm now feeding her cat food for less active cats. Trying to resist feeding her every time she begs for food -- which she does with alarming frequency.

I am also trying to get her to play more, but she is not particularly interested in cat toys. I am going to have to implement strategies to help her lose her excess weight -- and above all, to keep her from gaining more weight.

Do you have cats that are overweight? How are you facing the challenges of slimming down an overweight cat?

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