7 Simple and Effective Cat Weight Loss Tips Pin Image for Pinterest

7 Simple and Effective Cat Weight Loss Tips

When deciding to embark on the weight loss journey, it can be intimidating to know where to begin. The journey is made much easier, and less daunting when we have a system in place, and a support system to fall back on. The cat weight loss tips in this article were compiled with these two invaluable tools in mind.

Just like with humans, it can be difficult for a cat to lose weight.

But unlike humans, cats don’t have any choice in the matter. They rely on their guardians to provide them with what they need to live their best, healthiest lives.

The only way your cat is going to able to lose weight is by you making a serious, loving commitment to their health. A good feline weight loss plan incorporates physical exercise, mental stimulation, and proper nutrition.

The Truth About Our “Chonks”

Dark Grey Fat Cat on the Floor Looking Sad
I’ve seen all kinds of cats, from ones that are just a little bit overweight, to ones that are like furry beach balls dragging their tummies around.

“Chonks” (a nickname for fat cats) have been revered on social media as cute, and have been treated similar to a fad. Although my cats would be cute no matter what they weighed or looked like, this is extremely unfair to the felines whose health is being disregarded for a cruel and unusual trend.

Unsurprisingly, obesity has devastating effects, such as depression, osteoarthritis, diabetes, hepatic lipidosis (fatty liver syndrome), shorter life expectancy, and more.

As cat guardians, we all want the best lives for our cats, and want them around for as long as possible.

The easiest and most effective way to help your cat get healthy and lose weight is by making changes in their routine, and staying consistent.

The following 7 cat weight loss tips will provide you with a solid foundation from which to build your cat’s healthy weight loss plan!

Cat weight loss tips image for pinning to pinterest

1) Decrease Quantity of Food

This may seem obvious, but a surprising amount of pet parents overfeed their animals without realizing it. So, don’t feel bad if this is you! That’s why you’re here.

Make sure you’re feeding your cat the appropriate amount of food for their ideal weight. This means that you are not feeding them based off of what they weigh now, but what they should weigh if they were the correct, healthy weight.

You can learn your cat’s ideal weight for their breed, age, gender, and frame size from your veterinarian.

Here is a good basic chart to determine how overweight your cat is:

Obesity Chart from International Cat Care

The chart is from the International Cat Care Website. This and more valuable info regarding obesity in cats can be found in this article: Obesity In Cats

The information found there pairs well with these 7 cat weight loss tips.

2) Use a Slow Feeder and Puzzle Feeder Toys

In the wild, cats would typically be hunting for every meal. This means that they are used to working for their food. Replicating this process for all of your cats meals can help them feel more mentally fulfilled, and may even lead them to eat less in one sitting.

Slow Feeders: Mats or bowls that have designs or crevices to put food in. They can be a great way to slow your cat down when they’re eating meals. Some cats also have a tendency to wolf down their own food, and then rush to the next cat’s bowl to steal their food. This type of feeder will help to minimize this.

Here is a good quality slow feeder that can be used for both wet and dry food:

Bonus: It’s super easy to clean!

Puzzle Feeders: These come in lot of different styles. They are essentially toys that are designed to encourage your cat do something in order to “earn” a treat. Cats are very intelligent animals, and puzzle feeders are wonderful at providing them with vital mental stimulation. You could even put toys in them instead of food, if your cat is motivated by toys.

This is a particularly awesome and unique puzzle feeder:

I personally like this one more than the more basic versions, because it keeps my cats occupied longer, and provides even more mental stimulation.

3) Interactive Play!

Many cat guardians whose pets are overweight think that their cat doesn’t want to play, because all they typically do is eat and sleep.

I know this may seem correct on the surface, but I guarantee you this is just not the case. They are acting this way because they most likely feel icky and lethargic. Carrying extra weight also puts pressure on their joints, and can cause pain when they move around.

All cats love to hunt on a core level, it is literally what they are built for. And playing is a simulation of the hunt! Being extremely lazy and sluggish is not normal behavior.

If your cat is sluggish and unmotivated, this should just reinforce your decision to implement a weight loss plan. (As long as there is not an underlying medical issue.)

This does not mean that you should expect your cat to run around and chase those old mice laying in the corner gathering dust!

Interactive Play is Key!

cat being played with. demonstrating interactive play. Interactive play is one of the best cat weight loss tips

You have to participate in play. It’s your duty to find out what your cat’s favorite toy is, and entice them with it. Experiment! Give them some variety. Find which prey it is that they love, and then lure them off the couch with it.

Here are some ideal interactive toys (Click for more details):

*This toy with a mouse on the end is the #1 favorite in my house. All three of my cats cannot get enough it. Even Nia, who can be very difficult to engage in play, cannot resist this interactive mouse wand.

*These are the staple toys in my house. Over the years, we have tried out many interactive cat toys, and none compare to these four!

This motorized toy can be used in between play sessions with you, to help them stay active:

Honestly, I have all of these toys. Different cats respond differently to each one. It’s important to give them variety, so they don’t get bored.

It may take some time, and patience on your part to get your cat moving. Let yourself be motivated by any sort of engagement from your cat, and stay consistent. This can even be flicking their tail, and watching the toy.

I promise, at some point your cat will begin to play and then they will become addicted! This is when you’ll start to see the results.

If you need more tips on playing with your cat, be sure to check out my post:

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4) Use FitBark

FitBark is a health tracker, like FitBit for pets. It’s a pretty amazing, and versatile little device.

It gives you the ability to monitor your pet’s mobility, sleep patterns, anxiety levels, skin condition, and health conditions. It’s waterproof, heavy duty, and can be linked to your own FitBit or similar human health tracking device.

FitBark can be purchased with or without GPS, which can provide the awesome bonus of keeping track of your cat when their outdoors. Or if your cat is kept strictly indoors, you’ll be able to find them should they ever slip out.

(Keep in mind it’s impossible to fully have control over your cat’s diet if they’re allowed outdoors.)

Click here to check out FitBark.

This pet health monitor is marketed toward dogs, but can still absolutely be used for cats without an issue.

The only downside to using the FitBark to monitor cat health, is that they provide many comparative charts for dog activity levels, but not for cats. You can create basic exercise goals yourself, or work with your veterinarian to come up with the ideal activity plan for your furry one.

FitBark is a great way to stay motivated, and get the support you need. We are all extremely busy in this day and age. FitBark takes the pressure off of you to constantly be monitoring  your cat’s health and activity. 

With FitBark, you can be sure your cat is hitting their daily exercise goals, so they can become healthier in no time!

5) Take Your Cat For Walks

Picture of ginger cat on harness and leash out for a walk. Taking your cat for a walk is a great cat weight loss tip!
My cat Doja out on his harness 🙂

The next one on the list of cat weight loss tips is walking your cat. One of the best ways to get your cat active is by training them to walk on a harness!

I know this seems like a foreign concept to many cat owners. But I can assure you, once your cat gets used to the harness and being outdoors they will absolutely love it!

This is a very favorite activity of all three of my cats, and I really enjoy taking them out. They love to chase all the critters around outside. I live in Florida, so this is primarily lizards. They also love smelling all the great outdoorsy smells, and prowling in the grass.

Taking your cat for walks is a very beneficial way to get their mind off of food, and provide both mental and physical stimulation. It’s also an amazing tool for fostering a strong relationship between cat and guardian!

Walking your cat is another activity that is going to require your patience. It can take some cats a little while to get used to this process that is so new to them. But I promise, it will be well worth the effort.

6) Invest in an Exercise Wheel

I’m sure you’ve seen the YouTube videos of cats running on what looks like a giant hamster wheel.

You’ve probably thought something along the lines of “I could never get my cat to do that!”

I can relate to this, because I used to think the very same thing. That is, until my three cats and I had to move into a smaller space than we had ever been in. They started to go stir crazy, and were desperate for an outlet.

So, one day I decided to bite the bullet and try the OneFastCat Exercise wheel. I was so pleasantly surprised! No regrets!

Seriously, I cannot sing its praises enough. I just genuinely love this product.

After a little consistent training, two of my three cats use it every day.

My youngest cat (Doja) loves to jump up on it and take off like a bat out of hell. If someone is standing next to the wheel while he’s running on it, he’ll run for like 30 seconds, then get off and rub against their legs while crying, waiting for pets and praise.

Once he gets his praise he’ll get back on the wheel, and repeat this process multiple times. Not to be dramatic, but it’s basically the cutest thing on the planet.

The cat who doesn’t use it on her own (Ellie) isn’t as energetic as the other two, and never has been. Even so, I’m sure with some more training she’ll eventually use it on her own.

If your cat is overweight, I absolutely recommend giving this miraculous product a try. Along with losing weight, it can have a positive impact on your cat’s mental health. It can also increase their confidence, which is what I’ve seen happen with my more timid cat, Nia.

You just have to be willing to take 15 minutes or so each day to train them, until they start to use it on their own.

Check out OneFastCat Exercise Wheel here:

You can watch this video to see how easy it is to train your cat to use the wheel:

7) Consider the Quality of Your Cat’s Food

I want you to think about something for a moment.

When a human wants to lose weight, they could go one of two ways:

  1. Keep eating fast food and junk food, just eat less
  2. Implement a healthy diet

You could say that both of these tactics would work, technically. But when we think of losing weight, we usually want to feel better, not just look better.

Sure, you could feed your cat a highly processed food. One that contains an unnaturally high amount of carbohydrates. A food that’s laden with additives, such as artificial flavorings and colorants.

This kind of food is the junk food of the cat world. It contains ingredients like corn, meat by-products, BHT, and red 40. You can just cut down on the amount you feed, and they will still lose weight.

But if you decide to keep feeding a low quality food, it is unlikely that your cat is going to feel as great as you would like them to feel.

They will still be at risk for diabetes, chronic urinary tract infections, a shortened life span, and more.

Here is a good article to get your toes wet on the topic of healthy vs. unhealthy cat food:

7 Worst Cat Foods 2020 – How to Choose a Quality Food

Cats are Obligate Carnivores

This means that a cat in the wild consumes only meat. The only carbohydrates it typically gets are from the stomachs of prey, and the grass they occasionally chew. Their bodies are not built to break down large amounts of carbs, yet that is what many pet foods are peddling. This is because corn, rice, wheat, etc, are cheap fillers. Meaning, they lower production cost in order to increase profit margins.

In the wild, the vast majority of a cat’s water intake comes from the prey they consume. They do not have a natural drive to seek out many other forms of water. They retain this tendency, even when they are eating dry food. Therefore, cats who eat dry kibble alone become chronically dehydrated.

Feeding your cat the appropriate amount of a high protein, high moisture diet will not only help them lose weight. It will give them more energy, keep them properly hydrated, and improve many aspects of their health. Along with preventing many health problems in the future. It can even increase their lifespan!

I am a major advocate of minimally processed cat food, with little to no fillers or additives.
Personally, I feed my cats a raw, high protein, high moisture, homemade diet. You can read more about this in my post:



The same principles that apply to food, apply to treats. Minimally processed, minimal junk. My cats absolutely LOVE both of these treats:

I have come to really love this brand of treats, and I believe anything from PureBites to be of superior quality. I have to hide the bags, or else they get chewed through and devoured. Nia has even pulled them out of a drawer before.

*The best part is they’re healthy! The only ingredients are whatever protein source you choose, no added junk.

**Just be sure to factor in treats when you come up with a meal plan, so you don’t overfeed!

In Conclusion, When it Comes to Cat Weight Loss Tips, Health and Weight Go Hand-In-Hand

The truth is, we all want the ones we love to be healthy, including our pets.

Unlike our human loved ones, we have direct control over the health of our furry loved ones.

Our pets surround us with so much love every day. We owe it to them to do our best to keep them feeling as healthy and happy as possible. To enable them to live their best kitty lives!

Implementing all, or even some, of these cat weight loss tips will ensure that your cat is well on their way to a better life!

Thanks for reading!

Please comment, I would love to hear from you!

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