Some of you who follow my blog might remember Freckles from this post. Freckles is our biggest cat weighing in now at just under 25 pounds. We took him to the vet last week because we are concerned about his weight. We thought maybe he had a thyroid problem. According to the doc, cats don’t have thyroid problems that cause obesity. That only leaves two things — too much food and lack of exercise. So, he is starting a new diet and exercise program. It’s interesting in that he is our only overweight cat and three of our other six cats are related to him. Wish us luck cause I haven’t had good luck with my diet and exercise program! 😛
If any of you multi-cat households out there have suggestions on feeding cats with special diets, any ideas are greatly appreciated. I have a diabetic cat that wants to eat out of every bowl. I have one cat on a diet for UT blockage as a kitten and now a third cat on diet food. Ack! I used to feed them wet food (Wellness chicken or BFF tuna/salmon) in the morning and then let them graze all day on dry (Taste of the Wild). Guess that’s not working anymore.
So here is our Freckles. He was laying on the couch and I leaned over the back of the couch and took this pic. Yes, he is as big as he looks! Trust me when I say he can really move fast when he takes a mind to! He’s a cuddler. His way of waking me up in the morning is head-butting my arm and then laying across me. Ouch! 😀
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Something about big fat cats…. I’m crazy about them! Especially ginger cats. This is a great, happy picture! Wouldn’t it make a great birthday card?
I know what you mean, Cynthia. He’s just a bundle of love! What a great idea for a card! Thanks! 😀 ❤
Aww, he looks like a big bundle of love!
Hi, Linda. It’s not a good idea to allow your cats to eat dry food all day long. You need scheduled feedings, which is what I do, and even with that, I have some with weight problems. Dry food all together is not good for cats. There again, I go against that rule and give my cats snackies once per day, dry food by Royal Canine to help control tartar on their teeth. *sighs* Getting cats to eat right especially indoors ones, is not easy. And since your cats are now used to the dry food all day eating regimen, they will really be upset if you eliminate that. So, my suggestion is to slowly decrease the time they eat the dry food. Good luck!!!! Love, Amy
Thanks, Amy. Good advice and exactly what I’m trying to do. I’ve started picking up the dry food after a fair amount of time. I’m leaving the little bowls of canned food that they haven’t finished out for those that don’t care to eat first thing in the morning. Then feed at dinner time. I should have learned because the outdoor wild kitties eat in the morning and again at night and that’s it. Go figure. They don’t turn their noses up when the dishes go down! 😀
Linda, try to get your cats on a regular feeding schedule. Pick up the food after a certain amount of time. Don’t leave it out. I know this is not easy, because I have some who demand to have their own feeding times, and I just am not able to get them to eat with the others. This is not an easy undertaking you are doing, so have patience with yourself and with your cats. Cats are creatures of habit, as um we are. 😀 (((HUGS))) Amy
You’re so right about the hard part, Amy. But I know you’re right and I don’t like the idea of what would happen to him if I don’t put a stop to this. So tonight all food is put away until breakfast. I know that in the long run it’s for the best for all of them. sigh! Thanks for the encouragement. Hugs! 😀 ❤
Really hang in there. Your cats will protest. They will not be happy. Baby steps are a must. Reinforce with praise that they are doing good. Food is a source of security for them. Anything else I can help you with, let me know. xx Amy
Thanks, Amy. One thing I’m trying to do is when I see my little skinny cats looking for food, I’ll give them some. But I’m seriously monitoring Freckles. If he doesn’t eat his allotment in the morning, and wants something during the day, I’ll give him his leftover. Like you say, baby steps and experimenting till I figure out what works. Just getting started. I really appreciate your encouragement.
Good for you for allowing Freckles in on this change too. He can communicate, Linda, and he will. Take his “q” and even when you don’t understand, don’t stop trying. I don’t remember if I told you but I add good filtered water with the canned food I give to my cats to help encourage water intake, which is very important. Cats tend not to drink water enough. I have another thing you can do in mind, but first, let Freckles get used to the moist food change and the schedule change. Gentle on you, gentle on Freckles. This is huge, so easy does it. I’ve traveled this road several times. It’s not easy to say NO when a cat asks for food. Think of other things to help take Freckles’ mind off of food to get to the next feeding. Hang in there!!! (((HUGS))) Amy
It’s an interesting challenge, for sure! I have always fed them really good canned food with a side of really good dry food. But now we’re focusing more on the wet food. Freckles is not so crazy about his reduced fat food! Can’t say I blame him in the least. But he’s a good boy and he eats for “mama”! 😀
I have two cats, Emma and Kaiser. Emma is fat and Kaiser has a healthy weight. They each get the same thing, but Emma finishes Kaiser’s meal off and I shouldn’t let her do that. It isn’t easy putting a cat on a diet because one has to listen to the unending (It seems.) complaining. Good cat food is expensive and sometimes they don’t keep it down. I read on-line that happens because they eat too fast. So, I decided to mix dry food with the wet food in the hope that it would slow down the fast eating. It works! My cats are on a schedule…their own. Every time I walk into the kitchen, they start the meowing. I’ve created two monsters. We ALL need to get on a schedule.
I know what you mean. I guess I wasn’t paying too much attention before. Ever since we went to the vet, I began checking out who was crunching on the dry food during the day. Yep, mostly my big guy. So, here’s to tough love! 😀
OM!A stunning Sunday selfie! He’s really huge dear Linda! He reminds me of Tolkien’s poem … The giant lion with iron claw in paw …
Loved him Linda,he sits like an emperor on the couch;he leads an easy life,has everything he wants,hope he easily comes to term and change his eating habits ~ Enjoy your Sunday my friend 🙂 hugs & kisses for Frecles & you 🙂 ❤
Oh, Doda, I had to go read Tolkien’s poem after you wrote that. I LOVE IT! HAHA! How true is that. Freckles and I definitely have our work cut out for us! 😆 Happy Sunday! ❤ ❤
WOW, I hope you do posts on his, errrr….. progress. In particular, I would love to see what you come up with for his exercise program! 😉
Oh, dear, to post his progress (if any) would reflect on me! HA. The pressure is on! I just bought one of those laser toys yesterday. So far, his attention has lasted about 15 seconds. In fact, I haven’t gotten any of them to spend any time chasing it. I either have the laziest bunch of cats or the dumbest! 😛 😆
We once had a cat who was a Maine Coon cat…long hair, large bodied boy. He was quite agile and a very happy soul. We joked that he was Dom Deloise reborn as our cat. He even walked in the same manner. Diets were not his fav and he would try anything to get more food. Could Freckles be a big cat personality? Or perhaps have Maine Coon in his lineage? Good luck to both of you with this diet!
One of our cats is a Maine Coon (Nicky) — he’s the diabetic one that loves to eat but keeps his svelte figure! He’s definitely one cool cat! Even though they’re both rescues, I’m pretty sure they’re not related! 😀
What a hunk! Mes thinks is is big though (me weighs in at a whooping 5.2lbs and eats like a horse)
Whoa, 5.2 pounds? Why you must still be just a baby! 😀
Its very nice to meet you Freckles and I must say you are a big boy! Mom loves big cats, like me, and she’s got me on a diet. She also had a cat, Herb, that weighed up to 23lbs. In her experience the key to kitty weight loss is high protein and limited dry kibble. I came to live with her just over 4 months ago weighing 18lbs. I just weighed in at the vet at 16.6 lbs. She is feeding me limited Fat Cat Natural Balance and 1 small can of Hills Ideal Balance slim and healthy, for maybe a month or more. Herb dropped down to 17lbs after no longer eating low calorie kibble and as much wet food as he liked (and he was VERY lazy). Good luck! Purrs, Rhette
Wow, so you can relate at 23 lbs. The doc put Freckles on Hill’s r/d and said to go easy on the dry kibble. Tonight will be the first full night without food left out for any of them. Your weight loss story is encouraging. Thanks for sharing. 🙂
Now if this isn’t a photo that needs to go into tummy rub tuesday blog roll 😉
This definitely would have been perfect. I’ll have to go through my pics and find something. We have a lot of tummy rub picture ops around here! 😆
Looking forward to some of them. 😀
There is something so cute about a fat cat!
A cat’s natural instinct is to hunt, catch, kill and eat. While a laser can be fun, it doesn’t give them anything to catch and kill. Through fostering and volunteering at a shelter, we’ve found one of the best toys to be Da Bird. The way the feathers are shaped, it causes it to fly through the air more like a real bird. At first, they may only watch. That is ok! Don’t give up! It is still part of the hunting process. Eventually, they will move in for the kill. It is important to let them catch/kill it. Once they’ve had their playtime, then feed them. Establish a meal time, don’t leave food out all day. You may need to feed them in separate rooms to keep their diets separate. (a pain I know). Luckily, my vet prescribed some food that works for both my cat with UT problems and my overweight cat.
Thanks, Jenny. You’re right about fat cats being adorable. At the vet’s people kept calling him Garfield. sigh! Poor baby. Hey, I looked up that Da Bird toy on Amazon. It will be my next purchase. You’re right about the laser. My cats seem to get bored with it super quickly. We’re getting down to feeding morning and night and I’ll probably figure out some kind of healthy mid-day snack or else put out their uneaten food again for a short time. I have had to resort to the separate rooms and, yes, it is a pain. But it seems to be slowly working. Mind if I ask what food you’re feeding your cats?
Freckles does not look too keen to get on the treadmill!
He’s a lot like me in that regard! HA! 😆
Hah too funny Linda!
I sympathize with your problem- but I have to say, that is one big beautiful boy! I’m have trouble getting my skinny youngster and CRF oldster to eat, so I don’t have any suggestions about foods. But my cats do love the Go Cat teaser wand toy with the little mouse on the end. They can’t resist running after it.
I have ordered a Kong cat teaser toy wand from Chewy and plan on ordering Da Bird from Amazon. Gosh, I could probably take a vacation if I didn’t have all these animals! HA! But I wouldn’t have things any other way. I’m hopeful he’ll like the wand toy better because he really wasn’t much impressed with the laser toy! 😀 I hope your shelter babies find homes soon. They’re beautiful! ❤
When I worked at an animal shelter, I used to have a hefty kitty called Lily. Man, I loved that cat! Freckles’ pose in your photo really reminds me of Lily, as well as your description of his loving personality (purr-sonality?!). In any case, all good wishes to Freckles with his dieting!
Thanks, Leigh! They’re truly jolly old souls! It’s tough/rewarding working at an animal shelter. I did a three-month stint at the Human Society clinic here quite a few years ago, helping the vets in surgery and exams.
He looks gorgeous and very cuddly. My HRH became a little tubby around the waist recently and I found out that the kitty food that I’d been giving him was full of fats. Anyway, I changed his food and I don’t leave nibbles around for him, but I do give him another kitty formula 3 x per day. He has slimmed down a little now. Don’t know if that helps at all 😊
Thanks, Michelle. All suggestions are greatly appreciated. I’ll try anything! My other cats are having a bit of a time trying to figure out what’s going on. But we’ll get it all worked out. I think having a schedule will be better for them all anyway. 😀
Looks like a furry relaxed cat 🙂
I´m the only cat in my household and have no weight problem so I can´t give you any advise´s 😦
That’s okay, Charlie, just knowing you care…! Gosh, being the only cat…I’m sure you’re not spoiled! HA! 😆
My he looks like one of the throw pillows…and I still cannot believe he fitted in the bowl! But he is very beautiful and good luck with diet and exercise!!
Thanks, Johanna. heehee, he does look like a pillow doesn’t he. Poor baby! We’ve got quite a road ahead of us! 🙂
Linda, you can try a Bach Remedy too. It’s worth to check it out. We like Freckles, he looks like Garfield 😀 Pawkisses 🙂 ❤
Hmm, I never would have thought of that for a cat. I’ll look into it. Thanks! He does look a lot like Garfield! 😀 ❤
Oh, what a cuddly cat! Freckles is adorable. I hope his weight isn’t affecting his health. Good luck with the diet. 🙂
He is a cuddle-bug! I’m ferociously working on his weight now because I’m so afraid if he keeps on with this weight gain, he will end up with serious health issues — or worse. Can’t bear the thought of that. Thanks, Sylvia! 🙂
Linda, I adore when my cats (all have departed this earth) used to be in that position. I always think that it means they feel safe. Good luck on the diet and exercise plan.
I’m sorry your kitties have moved on, Sally. I know what that is. So true about that belly-up position. To me, for an animal to bare its belly, means that it trusts you completely. It’s a good feeling. Thanks for the luck wishes. I’m afraid I’m going to need it! 😀
I certainly sympathize … in our multicat household, Tabasco, acts like he is starving and moves from one bowl to the next to the next … I too thought of thyroid — glad to know part of the answer.
It’s actually been good for me to hear from other people in multi-cat households and how they have to deal with pretty much the same thing. I don’t feel so alone in all of this! 😀 I was really surprised about the thyroid thing.
Oh I love him!! what a wonderful portrait. It’s like he’s saying “who me? I’m pleasingly plump not obese!!”
HA! If only it was plump! Even the vet was amazed! I wish it was just plump. This separating cats and trying to get everyone to eat at the same time is a mess. 😀
you need a cat walker, a pretty pink lead and if you were near to Glasgow I’d do it for you 🙂
LOL! I’ve thought about that and I wonder if he would even walk with me! I should be getting one of those “birdies” on a rod so I can see if he’ll at least chase that! On another note, I would love to be near to Glasgow! A dream of mine to visit Scotland! 😀
Oh my…… and am I looking in a mirror? ☺
Nah, we can just say it must be one of those fun carnival mirrors. We all know how those distort! HAHA! 😆
So cute Linda, I love every inch of Freckles, now for some practical exercise, tie a fish on a long piece of string and than tie it to the clothes line, let Freckles smell it and than spin the line slowly at first than faster and faster , works every time, you will indeed have a very thin fish Lol
Blessings – Anne.
Ha! Great idea, Anne! Happy Sunday! 😀