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cats need diet

Discussion in 'Cat Health and Nutrition' started by adele88, Jun 2, 2010.

  1. adele88

    adele88 PetForums Newbie

    Jun 2, 2010
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    Just recently back from the vet with my 9month old kitten after being neutered. The vet suggested that he goes on a diet as he is a little over weight for his age. The now I feed him james wellbeloved kitten food I was feeding him 2 handfuls one in the morning and one at dinner time I have cut him down to half a handful in the morning and half a handful at night.

    Do anyone know if this food is ok for him? Also which is lower in fat dry food or food in jelly or gravy.
    thanks adele x
  2. Tje

    Tje Banned

    Jan 16, 2010
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    I don’t think you can put him on half of what he’s used to… that sounds quite drastic to me.

    Look on the packaging for the recommended daily amount for the weight your cat is.

    Sometimes the packaging will tell you how much to feed for underweight cats, how much for normal weight cats and how much for overweight cats. If it only gives one amount as recommended daily amount, that is for a cat that’s the proper weight, so

    Say the packaging says 80grams for a cat weighing 5 kilos, that’s obviously intended for a cat weighing the proper amount, so you would want to cut that amount down slightly… but only by about 10 or 15%.

    So it the recommended daily amount was 80grams, I would be looking to feed him about 70grams, maybe even slightly more (75grams).

    there’s no one rule that says dry is less fattening than wet or vice versa… each dry food is unique, as is each wet food. You have to follow the recommended daily amount for the weight of you cat, and as the vet has said he is a bit overweight, give him maybe 10% less than recommended, and weigh him regularly.

    generally all kitten foods (dry and wet) are more fattening than the adult versions.

    I prefer high quality wet foods over dry… but if I was feeding dry it would be one of the high protein low carb foods like Orijen, ZiwiPeak, Applaws, Acana etc.

    carbs make cats fat, whataver you choose, look for a high protein/low carb food.

    Weight loss in cats has to be a gradual thing, so do look at this as something that will takes months (I think a 100grams per month is the normal weight for a cat to loose that has about a kilo to lose, so you’d be looking at the best part of a year to achieve that weight loss safely).

    if he is an indoor cat exercise would be great for him too… chasing a ball or a mouse or a laser pointer for 5 minutes a few times a day,. It really does work, even when you don’t reduce their food intake.

    you really need to start weighing his food portions… working with handfuls is quite useless with cats I’m afraid… one handful can be 40grams and the next handful can be 60grams. If it helps, just weight the desired amount once and get something like the lid off of a hairspray can and mark a line with a marker pen at the 35 gram mark (or whatever half of his daily amount should be). That’s still not as accurate as weighing… but better than just guessing with hand measures.

    Please don’t reduce his current feeding schedule by anymore than 10% without first consulting with your vet, it could do him a LOT of damage.
  3. The Twins

    The Twins PetForums Senior

    Oct 11, 2009
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    Good post TJE - agree. I would def recommend not cutting back as drastically as you're aiming too and start to weigh your food... how much does your kitty weigh and what breed is he?

    I would also recommend wet food over dry - for weight loss in particular. Dry is full of carbs which will make kitty pile on the pounds. I'd personally recommend raw feeding for an overweight kitty too... but wet food NOT dry if you cant/wont/dont want to go down this route.

    Did you vet give you any tips or recommendations?
  4. hobbs2004

    hobbs2004 PetForums VIP

    Mar 12, 2010
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    Couldn't agree more with Tje and The Twins. The first step before you cut down any of your cat's food is to measure how much you usually give him and how much he actually should have.

    According to the James Wellbeloved website a kitten aged 30 weeks weighing 3 kg should get 80g a day. A kitten aged 50 weeks weighing 4 kg should also get 80g a day. Now, 80g is not a lot. That is probably about a handful.

    So, if you have a pair of kitchen scales, then do a little experiment. Measure out your three handfuls you would normally feed and then see how much 80g of that really is. Then gradually decrease the amount you are feeding him until you get to the amount that you should be feeding him (80g or whatever it will be as he grows). I have a hunch that your cat will inadvertently slim down if you feed him the daily recommended portion because i have a big hunch that you are accidentally feeding too much. One needs deceptively little dry food.

    I like Tje's idea of using a container as a handy shortcut, so you don't need to use scales all the time.

    I also agree with Tje re her recommendations about other dry foods - if you want to continue feeding dry. James wellbeloved kitten - the lamb and rice variety is full of carbs (fillers): White rice (min 26%), Lamb meat meal (min 26%), lamb fat, maize gluten, potato protein (min 7%), lamb gravy, tomato pomace, omega-3 oil supplement, chicory extract, carrot, cranberry extract (min 0.05%), DL methionine, lysine hydrochloride, taurine, threonine, zinc methionate, yucca extract, rosemary oil.

    So it contains a heck of a lot of rice. The orijen, applaws, acana and ziwi peak that have been mentioned don't contain any grains - just 75% or so meat and the rest some veg, fruit and herbs.

    They may seem to be more expensive than the james wellbeloved but you don't need to feed a lot of that food - so a bag goes a long way.

    As Tje suggested, exercise is a great way to get a cat in shape - even 10 min a day of rigorous play can do wonders over time

    But the thing here is time - it is dangerous to starve a cat. It should be done gradually and slowly over time.

    And as the Twins suggested, you might want to consider feeding wet or even raw food. Both contain a lot more moisture (which cats need as they are not good drinkers) and most good quality cat food doesn't contain any fillers, which help pile on the pounds.

    If that is something that you would like to consider but would like more guidance on what to feed, then holler and we can give you a list of some good quality, complete wet food! :thumbup:
    #4 hobbs2004, Jun 2, 2010
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2010
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