Ever-expanding cat

(23 Posts)
Blithereens Sun 20-Apr-14 11:01:33

My cat is fat.

I have two: a girl who is very dainty and has health problems which are managed through medication but mean she is a skinny kit, and a boy who only goes to the vet once a year and is always pronounced to be in the peak of health except that he's entirely spherical.

They both have three legs, so keeping his weight down is important to avoid unnecessary strain on his sole back leg. I just don't know why he keeps putting on weight!

They eat Hill's Science Diet, as recommended by the vet. We measure it out and they rarely eat all of it. He has one Dreamie a day, but they are 2 calories so I don't think it can be that.

He is very sedentary. We try to encourage him to play with us every day, and he will for a few minutes but then wants to sit like a pudding and wait for the toys to come to him tbuhmm He's quite a nervy cat and has to be 'encouraged' to go outside. I would be very surprised if he was a six dinner Sid. He seems to go out and sleep in a bush until we call him in, whereas my girl wants to go out all the time and patrol the entire neighbourhood looking for interlopers.

The vet always says he has a beautiful coat and perfect teeth etc, he just gets fatter every year. When he sits on me it's like a cannonball on my tummy, and he's starting to struggle a bit to scramble up on to furniture sad I don't know what to to do. The vet is dead against switching to diet food but can't really suggest anything else except encouraging him to be more active. But how, more than we already do? Aargh!

cozietoesie Sun 20-Apr-14 11:09:49

I struggle to keep weight on my particular old boy at the moment so it's a different situation - but I appreciate the difficulty of trying to encourage a cat to do something they don't want to do.

What is his actual weight and intake? I can't help feeling that the time has come to reduce his calories by one means or another.

(I'm surprised your vet is so calm about it.)

cozietoesie Sun 20-Apr-14 11:12:35

PS - have a read of this.

HolidayCriminal Sun 20-Apr-14 11:18:19

Ask the neighbours if anyone is feeding him, OP.
Does he catch any of his dinner?
Mine scoffed an entire baby rabbit the other evening (sigh).

Blithereens Sun 20-Apr-14 11:24:11

I'm surprised too! He's a fabulous vet, has been so wonderful with my girl's myriad health problems, and I do trust him, but I see my cat starting to struggle with his mobility sad

The vet says he is very muscular except for his belly, which is good. He is also extremely strong. He weighed nearly 6 kilos at the vet (for comparison, my girl struggles to tip the scale at 3!) and he has 50g of food a day but, as I said, very rarely eats all of it.

Blithereens Sun 20-Apr-14 11:25:49

Holiday, I will ask. I will be amazed though. He's scared of his own shadow!

I suppose he COULD be catching food but I've never seen any evidence of it. My girl murders anything that crosses her path, but in 7 years he's only ever brought one mouse home, and he didn't even kill it.

Blithereens Sun 20-Apr-14 11:28:23

Our other problem is that we have to free feed as my girl needs food available to her at all times. She will only nibble a mouthful here and there so free-feeding means she does get most of what she needs throughout the day. I'd understand it if he was scoffing everything left but he doesn't! It's a mystery.

cozietoesie Sun 20-Apr-14 11:56:53

This will be coming on to the market in a few months although it's pretty darned expensive and I don't know how tight funds are for you.

I can't gauge just how much the 6 kilos is overweight given that we don't know what breed he is, he's muscular (muscle weighs more) but he's a tripod - so missing the weight of that leg. He's not thin though; and maybe at that stage where his size is making it difficult for him to move around much but he can still make his food bowl.

50 g really doesn't sound a huge amount though even for dry food. Are you completely sure he's not a Six Dinner Sid given that he actually goes outside?

How old is he? (Sorry if you've said above but I couldn't see it.)

I suspect another hard talk with the vet is necessary.

Blithereens Sun 20-Apr-14 12:08:26

He's 7. They both are, they are siblings. (As far as we know - the person they were rescued from wasn't exactly a reliable narrator. She said their legs just broke off hmm) They're just moggies - she's a tabby white and he's a tuxedo cat. But they are both small, as they lost their legs before they turned 1 and it inhibited their growth. He really is very round!

50g is actually less than it says for his weight but as I said, he doesn't eat all of it. I wouldn't worry so much if he wasn't a tripod. The thought of the strain on his hip is a source of much fretting.

Thanks for both those links. I shall talk to the neighbours and the vet again. I really appreciate your advice!

Belalug0si Sun 20-Apr-14 12:19:25

My cat kept putting on weight, switched to diet food, still no change. Vet wouldn't believe us that we were sticking to the amounts.
Complete mystery why he wasn't losing weight, until my friend spotted our cat in gardens across the road, eating bread that mad pigeon lover woman in the flats was putting out for the birds. Mystery solved!
Cat also would steal our food, e.g. ripped open a packet and licked all the tops off bakewell tart flapjacks. Another time dashed in from the kitchen with tomato on his face looking confused. He'd stuck his head into the leftover chilli that I'd just dished up.

Even if you think the neighbours aren't likely to be feeding him, please look out for other sources of food. Cats can be quite enterprising and resourceful creatures.

MillyMoo1113 Sun 20-Apr-14 12:26:15

My big ginger tom was almost 6kilos and the vet gave us weight control food called satiety. He was on 50g a day for four weeks then had to drop to 40g and he lost nearly half a a kilo is first couple of months and that's with him occasionally stealing our other cats food. So maybe 50g a day, whilst it doesn't sound much, is too much?

We bought a laser pen for him to chase from eBay, only a couple of pounds. He chases it for about thirty second then gives up!!

I agree its worth a chat with the bet again tho.

cozietoesie Sun 20-Apr-14 12:37:26

Ah well - if he's a standard breed and a tripod he's too heavy - and the vet is wrong in my view - on the face of it. I think you need to find out why the vet is so dead against it because it would be a shame to impair good relations with a good vet.

(Their legs 'just broke off' ? Sheezz.)

NearTheWindymill Sun 20-Apr-14 12:39:33

Well my BSH boys are both 7.5 kilo, aged 7, and eat Hill Science Light. The little tabby, who looks far more oriental, is 5 kilo and eats as much but is much more active and by far the best hunter. ime they hunt most up until about age 4 when I think they slow down a bit.

Blithereens Sun 20-Apr-14 12:42:32

He wouldn't go out at all if we didn't make him so I really don't think he's finding food outside. But I'm going to ask anyway. In our first house I remember him scarpering home from a building site with half a bacon roll in his mouth.

We have a laser pen but it stresses him out and he wails when he can't catch the dot. He does like to play, and we encourage him, but he mostly just wants to be cuddled all day long. Which I am very happy to indulge grin but this needs sorting out. We live in a townhouse and we put his litter tray two flights of stairs away from the living room/bedroom which at least forces him to go up and down a couple of times a day!

We've started putting any food he doesn't eat back in the bag, then re-measuring out his dinner porti

Blithereens Sun 20-Apr-14 12:42:37

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Blithereens Sun 20-Apr-14 12:42:37

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Blithereens Sun 20-Apr-14 12:43:05

Ffs!! Dinner portion. At least this way there's not extra in how bowl he doesn't really want at dinner time.

Blithereens Sun 20-Apr-14 12:45:48

cozie I know sad they had basically half a leg cut off when they were rescued and the cat's protection league amputated the other half as they were at terrible risk of infection etc. When we adopted them we hadn't even met the girl as she was still in recovery! It was a horrible start for them but I like to think they landed on their three feet with us smile

cozietoesie Sun 20-Apr-14 12:47:32

I'm reading (I can hardly believe I've looked this up) that there's some anecdotal evidence that a leg might weigh some 10-15% of body weight depending on where it was amputated. That would clearly be very rough but it might give you an indication of a truer weight for him.

I'd speak to the vet. Diet is indicated, I think, but these things are usually better under veterinary supervision.

cozietoesie Sun 20-Apr-14 12:48:42

Poor pair. What a dreadful woman.

Best of luck with them both. (I'm assuming the girl's condition is relatively stable at the moment.)

Blithereens Sun 20-Apr-14 12:50:53

Yes, she's doing much better. Her weight and water intake are stabilising and her blood results are miles better. She's herself again - there was a horse outside our house being harnessed for the Easter parade and she was quite keen to go out and chase it off. Changed her mind when she got near it though tbugrin

Lonecatwithkitten Sun 20-Apr-14 15:24:55

Make him eat all his kibble from one of these the extra energy he will expend 'hunting' his food should quickly make a difference. This is my favourite weight loss aid for cats.

cozietoesie Sun 20-Apr-14 16:28:43

It's certainly worth a try - even if he's so lazy that he just eats the girl's food, kibble toys are excellent to have around on general principle.

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