Obesity is on the rise in America, and it is not just affecting humans anymore. According to Hill’s Science Diet, “Over 50% of cats seen by veterinarians are judged to be either overweight or obese.” Obesity in cats is easily treatable with proper diet and exercise.

If your pet is having problems battling the bulge, the first thing to consider is their cat food. The first step in a healthy lifestyle is having complete and well balanced diet. You should select a food that is nutrient rich and designed for your cat’s life stage. While kittens may need the calorie rich diet to support their growth, an older cat should have a food that is nutrient rich without the abundance of calories.

You also have to be careful not to over feed your cat. Read the label on the cat food for the recommended daily serving. “Cats fed two to three smaller, measured meals daily tend to maintain their weight better than those fed free choice.” Consult your veterinarian to understand your cat’s body condition and their specific dietary needs.

Exercise is another component of a healthy lifestyle. Similar to humans, outdoor or active cats need a higher calorie diet than their couch potato counterparts. While your “couch potato” may not be running circles around the house, it is still important for them to exercise. The best way to encourage this is by playing with them.

With proper diet and exercise, you can have your fat cat back to shape in no time!