How Can I Get My Cat to Gain Some Weight? Best Tips to Deal With A Skinny Cat

Are you worried that your cat looks weak and weighs below the normal weight for her age? While it’s true that a skinny cat is not necessarily weak or undernourished. You can always take a few steps to figure out yourself how to get your cat to gain some weight.

So if you’ve ever wondered: how can I get my cat to gain some weight? You’ve come to the right place to get the right answers.

Before We Begin…

Before we get to the answers, first, it’s important to figure out whether and if your cat is actually too skinny or underweight. You can go about this in two ways.

Take your cat to the vet (this is what I strongly recommend you do) and have the vet evaluate the ‘body condition score’ of your cat. The ‘body condition score’ is just like the ‘body mass index’ evaluation for humans.

Second, you can perform a simple test yourself by using your hands to feel your cat’s body. Most specifically, her ribcage and the area behind her front legs. If you can easily feel your cat’s rib without pressing down on her coat, then it suggests that your cat is skinny and needs to put on some weight.

But this is not always an effective way to determine whether your cat is skinny or overweight. Because if your cat is skinny and it’s a result of some medical condition, the vet will let you know asap how to treat it. 

How Can I Get My Cat to Gain Weight?

Switching a cat’s diet is not as simple. I don’t know about your cats but mine are very squeamish about what food they eat. It takes a few days before my cats start enjoying the new food that I give them.

Once any medical condition is ruled out with regards to why your cat is skinny, you can follow these simple steps to get on top of your cat gaining some healthy weight…

1. Diet

This is the first thing you need “fixing.” Cat food that is supposed to help cats gain weight has more calories. You don’t necessarily have to feed your cat more food in order for her to gain weight. Even a small quantity of food that is calorie-dense is enough for weight gain.

Such specific types of diet cat foods are higher in fat than carbohydrates and proteins. After consulting with a vet, you can adjust the portion size to allow your cat to gain weight in a healthy manner without the risk of becoming overweight.

Studies show that canned cat food, made with meat and extra moisture, is a good alternative to dry food that is usually high in carbs. Canned foods contain more fats. And since they also retain a raw, enticing, and meal odor for your cat – a cat is more likely to gobble up wet food because of the extra water and strong smell than dry food.

If your cat is still not enticed by the smell and sight of canned food, you can heat the food up slightly to make it more palatable. 

2. Feeding Tube

This is a medical procedure that only vets should perform. If your cat is reluctant to eat high-fatty foods on her own, you can resort to a temporary feeding tube that will make sure your cat gets all the food she needs to gain weight.

This type of feeding is very helpful for difficult and stubborn cats. This also reduces stress on both the cat owner and the cat about finishing the food. And if you also need to provide your cat with some important health medications, a feeding tube is the most effective route. Provided that you take your cat to a vet to perform this minor procedure carefully and gently.

3. Try Supplements  

Female Pet Owner Giving Her Cat CBD Oil Drops as Alternative Therapy.

Cat supplements like fish oil increase the calorie intake of your cat on top of their diet. It’s also a good natural supplement for improving your cat’s coat, making it look fuller, shinier, and less prone to shedding.

Fish oil supplements (for cats) are rich in omega fatty acids. Make sure you buy the right product for your cat and consult with a vet for any possible allergens that the supplement may have that will affect your cat.

There are made vet-approved lickable treats and supplements for your cat to get excited about. If your cat is fussy, a lickable treat made from meat is the perfect way to increase your cat’s calorie intake without going through a lot of trouble. Treats are also good for increasing your cat’s appetite if they do not like to eat the prepared cat food.

This brings to another interesting trick to get your cat to gain weight naturally…

4. Incorporate Homemade Treats

Contrary to popular trends, you can offer your cat treats the way one would to a dog! You can feed your cat some shredded chicken and/or boiled egg. Not in large quantities. Just bite-sized treats for your cat to nibble on to increase her calorie intake per day.

You can use treats to reward your cat after she’s done something good. Like finishing her meal, drinking water from a bowl, potty training, etc. Some cat parents also leash train their cats and offer treats. It’s a great way to spend more time with your cat and for them to trust you completely.

Final Thoughts

These steps should not be carried out long term because it may lead to weight gain. It’s best to consult with a vet before you take anything long-term. Calorie-dense cat food can cause weight gain fairly quickly.

In comparison to the natural diet trends of a feline, kitten foods are higher in fats and calories than adult foods. A kitten needs more fats to grow into an adult cat. Once there, you need a protein-rich diet to maintain your cat’s ideal weight.

It’s important to remember that taking matters into your own hands when fattening up a cat can lead to a lot of misinformation. So talk to a vet to figure out the best possible food, product, supplement, treats, etc. to help your cat to gain weight without putting her health at risk.

Lisa Thompson
 

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