weight loss

by Vicki Salter
(Mount Pleasant, Ontario, Canada)

I have a 16 year old male cat with arthrithis (sp?) in his hind quarters and is dropping some weight. He still has a good appetite but no weight gain. Is there something I could make at home that would be tasty to him and put some meat back on his bones. Thanks for your help with my concern. Vicki Salter

RESPONSE:

Vicki,

Arthritis, although painful, typically doesn’t cause weight loss unless a cat’s appetite is severely impacted. You say that your cat has a good appetite but no weight gain. You may need to have your vet check to see if there is a physical issue that is causing this. Feline hyperthyroidism has several symptoms but one is that a cat loses weight although it eats and drinks well.

Another fairly common reason is
cat internal parasites. Yet another is diabetes in cats. Trying different foods won’t improve your cat’s weight if it has any of these issues because it will also need medications.

However, once you have established that there is no physical malady that is causing your cat not to gain some weight you can try some different foods. The problem with preparing home cooked foods is that cats require taurine which is added to both dry and wet foods by the manufacturers. But there is nothing wrong with supplementing your cat’s diet with something that it enjoys. If your cat enjoys fish, a spoonful of tuna with some of the juice, added to his food bowl will encourage eating. A little olive oil drizzled over their food will entice many cats. Plus, food that is warmed a little has more aroma to stimulate interest. Or, you can pour a little chicken or beef broth over the food for added flavor and moisture. You can also prepare some home-cooked chicken as long as it’s supplementing other dry or wet food so your cat is still getting the right mix of protein and carbohydrates etc. See the info on the Cat Nutrition page.

However, once you have established that there is no physical malady that is causing your cat not to gain some weight you can try some different foods. The problem with preparing home cooked foods is that cats require taurine which is added to both dry and wet foods by the manufacturers. But there is nothing wrong with supplementing your cat’s diet with something that it enjoys. If your cat enjoys fish, a spoonful of tuna with some of the juice, added to his food bowl will encourage eating. A little olive oil drizzled over their food will entice many cats. Plus, food that is warmed a little has more aroma to stimulate interest. Or, you can pour a little chicken or beef broth over the food for added flavor and moisture. You can also prepare some home-cooked chicken as long as it’s supplementing other dry or wet food so your cat is still getting the right mix of protein and carbohydrates etc.

The pages on finicky cats and senior cat diets have some information that you may find of interest. Tomlyn and Nutri-cal, Royal Canin and Iams have special high calorie diet products that may be of benefit to you. You can also try baby food but be sure to read the ingredients and make sure there is no onion powder in it because this is harmful to cats.

Your cat may also find food more pleasurable without the discomfort or pain of arthritis so check out some of the products available for arthritis relief at your local pet store, your veterinarian, or you can click on any of our affiliate links on the right hand side of each page of this site.

I hope you can entice your cat to eat a little more to put some weight on. I can see that you are concerned enough to pursue the best choices for your cat. Good luck with your older kitty.

Comments for weight loss

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Jul 11, 2012
Thanks
by: Vicki

Thanks So much for your comments and professional opinion. I have taken Ed to vet and he has a minor heart murmur but taking no medication for it. I have and will continue to feed him Royal Canin dry and lots of different wet cat food as well some chicken broth, tuna, etc.

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