If you were to visit CATS Cradle Shelter these days, you may be greeted at the door by Alexia, a genteel aristo-cat who was initially kept in a colony room. Due to weight gain during her time there, she was promoted to office cat, which allows her more space and freedom to exercise.
Alexia may be prim and reserved, but she’s also friendly and curious. She’s always following volunteers around to see where they’re going and what they’re doing. When it comes to other cats, she’s easy to get along with, and will willingly give up toys or sleeping spots if another cat wants them.
An ideal home for Alexia would have plenty of space for her to exercise and maintain a healthy weight. She thrives on individual attention, so she’d prefer to be an only cat; either that or a housemate to a quiet, low-key companion.
Obesity in cats often leads to diabetes, arthritis, heart and lung disease, a compromised immune system, and may even make them vulnerable to certain types of cancer. When it comes to feeding time, some owners allow their cats to “free-feed,” meaning they keep the bowl full all day for any time their cat gets hungry. A better option would be to feed them a little at a time throughout the day, as many types of dry cat food tend to be high-calorie.
If your cat needs to lose weight, visit your veterinarian and get their estimate on the cat’s ideal body weight, how much they need to lose, and how many calories they should be fed a day. Find out whether the weight gain is due to overfeeding or to an undiagnosed illness. Also ask your vet about the right types of cat food.
And of course, playtime is essential for any cat owner. Keep them active with toys such as laser lights, cat tunnels, and track toys. Puzzle feeder toys can also be helpful, as they dispense food when the cat bats it around or scratches it up, making them work for it.
– Särah Nour