Question: Any suggestions on diet for a 12 year old cat who is dreadfully overweight? The vet and I have been struggling with this problem for years. He just continues to add on the pounds no matter what he is fed, which is both dry and canned.

Answer: Thanks for writing in. Here are a few tips:

1) Figure out your cat’s ideal body weight. Most domestic shorthair cats should weigh between 8 and 10 pounds.

2) Work with your vet to calculate how many calories (called his resting energy requirement) he needs at this ideal body weight.

3) Most cats must eat only 75 to 80% of this calculated value in order to get the weight loss started in earnest.

Here is my article on Weight Loss Tips for more information: The “Fat Cat” Dilemma.

Good luck and hope this helps.
Dr. Donna Spector

Answers provided to pet owners by Dr. Donna Spector should be considered information and not specific advice. Answers are to be used for general information purposes only and not as a substitute for in-person evaluation or specific professional advice from your veterinarian. Communications on this site are very limited and should never be used in possible cases of emergency. Halo, Purely for Pets will not be liable for any loss or damage caused by your reliance on any information or content contained in a blog or article post. If you have consulted your veterinarian and if you are still concerned about your pet’s condition or if your pet has chronic, complicated or undiagnosed problems, Dr. Spector can offer consultations for you and your veterinarian via

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