Have you ever been told that your pet is overweight?
Dont be discouraged....here is a success story that will hopefully inspire you in your weight loss goal for your own pet.
This is a tale of a cat who was overweight and his owner (who is a staff member here at the clinic by the way) recognized that Zeus had become less active, his ability to jump up was dwindling, and his overall health was in jeopardy. She made the decision to get the excess weight off and he was put on our "Slim Fit Program". He was brought in for blood work prior to starting the program, to ensure there was no underlying health concerns, and with the blood work indicating there were no other problems - Zeus' life was about to change.
His starting weight was 14.78 lb on May 28/2011 with a Body Condition Score of 4.5/5.
He was put on a good quality low calorie diet which is high in protein and psyllium fibre to ensure Zeus was always well fed and satiated. His portions are carefully measured every day to esure he is never overfed, and his treats were restricted to very low calorie healthy snacks given in moderation as incentive to exercise.
Several weeks went by and his weight went down to 14.6, and then 14.4 lbs a few weeks after that. At that point Zeus' weight plateaued and he stayed at 14.4 lbs for the next 4 weeks with no change. Plateauing is something that happens to almost every animal on a weight loss program, and so do not dispair. Eventually the weight started to come off again, and by the end of July he was down to 13.8 lbs.
As of Today he is 13.0 lbs with a Body Condition Score of 3.5/5. He still has a little more weight to lose, but having already lost 1.78 lbs - his activity level has increased and he now runs around playing with balls and other toys and such. The increase in activity will increase his metabolism and he will continue to drop the weight at a nice slow and steady pace.
His suggested goal is to get to 12 lbs - but we will continue to assess him and see where he really needs to be. Its not just about the pounds as it is about how he 'wears' that number.
Weight loss in cats has to be a slow process - they should not lose weight too quickly as it can drastically affect their health. So...if you have an overweight cat....be patient and persistent. Weight loss for your cat can happen with proper nutrition, portion control, increased exercise and limited treats. Ask your veterinary staff how they can help you get the extra pounds off your pet.