Is My Cat Overweight? How to Tell and What to Do

Even a few extra pounds can make a big difference in your cat's health and longevity. We have Austell veterinarians on staff who can help you figure out if your cat is overweight today.

Your Cat's Weight & Health

When your cat is healthy, its weight is important even if you don't think about it. When your cat is overweight, just like people, its chances of getting serious and even life-threatening illnesses go up a lot. Even a few extra ounces can make a big difference in your cat's health and well-being.

Health Risks Faced by Overweight Cats

If your feline friend is carrying the excess weight they face an increased risk of developing these serious conditions: 

  • Diabetes
  • Arthritis
  • Urinary tract infections
  • Joint pain
  • Chronic inflammation
  • Skin problems

How To Tell If Your Cat Is Overweight

To determine whether your kitty is overweight try the tips below.

Look for Your Cat's Waistline

  • Take a look down at your cat from right above while he or she is standing up. In the area above your cat's hips, look for a small depression where their waist should be (this can be a bit tricky with long-haired cats). If you can't see their waist or their sides are swollen, your cat is likely fat.

Feel for Your Cat's Ribs

  • When your cat is at a healthy weight you should be able to slightly feel their ribs by gently running your hand along their chest. If you can't feel your cat's ribs, your cat may be overweight. 

Struggling to Jump

  • Cats are born with the ability to run and jump quickly. If your cat takes several tries to jump up onto their favorite piece of furniture, or if they give up entirely, their weight could be the issue.

Use Our Overweight Cat Chart

  • Look over the illustration below to get a better understanding of your cat's weight category, and whether your cat may be carrying an extra pound or two.

Overweight cat chart, Thomasville Vet

Getting Your Cat's Weight Back On-track

Your cat's breed, age, and lifestyle all make a significant difference to their nutritional needs.

If you think your cat is fat, make an appointment with your veterinarian. Your veterinarian will figure out how much your cat weighs now, as well as what their ideal weight is and how to help them reach their weight loss goals.

If your cat is just a little overweight, you may be able to continue feeding them their regular food but at reduced portion sizes. 

If, on the other hand, your cat needs to lose a significant amount of weight, it may be best to switch your kitty over to a specialized food that is formulated to help cats lose weight.

Unexplained Weight Gain

If your cat has suddenly begun to put on weight without cause, it's time to see your vet. Unexplained weight gain can be a symptom of an underlying health issue.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

Is your cat a little fat? Please contact us as soon as possible to set up an appointment for your cat to be checked out. Our veterinarians can figure out your cat's nutritional needs and help you get back in control of your cat's weight.