Archive for July, 2012

Feline Obesity – Part 4 – Choosing a Feline Diet for Weight Loss and Maintenance

The good thing about choosing a weight loss food for cats is that the food will be used for maintenance as well. The following is a short list of requirements for choosing a commercial cat food. If the commercial food in question, meets the following criteria, then look for the quality of ingredients and question the company as to the source of those ingredients. (Percentages are on a dry matter basis – DMB*).

  • Protein – from meat and over 45%
  • Fat – from meat and over 25%
  • Carbohydrates – 0% but not over 10%
  • Water – at least 60% (not DMB) this excludes all dry and semi-moist foods!
  • Grain-free and soy-free

Basically, the best cat food is a wet food that contains lots of meat and fat. It is as simple as that. Cat food should never contain any grain, soy, vegetables, fruits or ingredients from plant sources such as flaxseed oil. These ingredients are poorly, if at all, used by the cat. I also recommend canned cat food that contains some organ meat such as liver or kidney (heart is considered muscle meat); many varieties contain none. Continue reading

Feline Obesity – Part 3 – Guaranteed Weight Loss for the Obligate Carnivore (Cat)

One of the biggest problems with getting cats to lose weight is realizing why they are gaining it. It is wrong to assume that it is only because they are eating too much food, particularly if fed free choice. Limiting carbohydrates is the number one weight loss and weight control tactic.

Many cats fed animal protein and animal fat with limited to no carbohydrates, may actually be fed free choice. Since their protein and fat requirements are reached, these cats will typically stop eating when sated.

Water is essential for feline health and regulation of body functions. Flushing the kidneys and bladder are also important to reduce or negate urinary crystal formation. Continue reading

Feline Obesity – Part 2 – Diet Does Not Mean Starve

So, we know that the typical 4 Step Program doesn’t work. However, steps 1 (reducing quantity) and 4 (exercise) aren’t exactly necessary if you change steps 2 (changing food) and 3 (feeding mealtime), particularly step 2. It really all comes down to the type of food you feed your cat.

While reducing the quantity of food and feeding mealtime only can be helpful, it won’t be unless you change the type of food that is being fed. By feeding the wrong type of food while reducing the quantity, you will essentially be starving your cat. The cat requires high levels of protein in its diet and will begin utilizing its own organs and muscle (digesting them) if given a reduced protein diet or a reduced quantity of food thereby reducing the protein load. The majority of overweight cats are eating a free-choice dry diet. The problem is threefold: too many carbohydrates, not enough animal protein and not enough animal fat. Cats are obligate carnivores, meaning they require certain nutrients that they cannot synthesize which are only found in meat and are able to metabolize only a small amount of carbohydrates. Continue reading