Feline Weight Loss: Should You Be Concerned?

by Anna P. | December 23rd, 2013 | Cats, Health
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yellow catMany pet owners are most concerned with weight gain and obesity. With risk factors like diabetes and heart disease, it’s no wonder most pet owners are concerned when their pet cats gain weight. ¬†However, pet owners should also take concern should their pet lose a significant amount of weight, especially if the weight loss is unexplained, which is sometimes a sign of a more serious underlying illness. Should you be concerned if your pet cat loses weight? Read on to find out more.

1- Eating Habits

It’s always a good idea to keep an eye on your cat’s eating habits, that way you will know what is normal and what isn’t. Is your cat eating less than usual? It could be caused by stress or an underlying disorder such as intestinal or stomach disease. Is your cat eating the same or more as usual but losing weight? This might be something serious like diabetes or hypothyroidism. Any time you notice weight loss, you will want to consult your vet.

2- Old Age

Older cats tend to lose weight thanks to changes in metabolism. That said, it’s still a good idea to take your pet to the vet just in case, especially since older cats tend to be susceptible to a variety of illnesses including but not limited to cancer, diabetes, or kidney issues. It’s important to discuss any issues you may have regarding your aging pet’s health and perhaps formulate a diet plan to help your cat get back to his normal weight.

3- Are There Other Symptoms?

More often than not, serious health issues come with multiple symptoms. If your cat exhibits weight loss, watch out for other signs such as lethargy, vomiting, diarrhea, bad breath, behavioral changes, increased thirst/appetite, and fur loss. Make a note of these symptoms and talk with your vet.

4- Dental Issues

If your pet’s lost a significant amount of weight, it’s probably a good idea to check her dental health. Gum disease, gingivitis, and periodontal disease sometimes cause pain which makes it harder for your cat to eat and subsequently maintain weight. ¬†It’s a smart idea to check your cat’s mouth for signs of dental disease such as red inflamed gums, halitosis, or lumps.

A responsible pet owner knows that preventive measures are key to better health. Regular checkups are the best way to do this.

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