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As cats age and slow down, they become predisposed to obesity. While gaining weight in middle and old age can be a normal side effect of a sedentary lifestyle, it’s also important to rule out any medical issues such as thyroid disorder or diabetes with your vet. Feline obesity can increase your... pet’s risk of heart disease, diabetes, arthritis and many other conditions, so it’s important to pay attention to your cat’s size and to notice any sudden or recent changes.
Once you and your vet have decided to work towards a lower weight for your cat, a reduced calorie diet is key to helping him get there. This, along with increased movement (a great toy that encourages exercise is a good place to start) can help a cat safely shed those excess pounds. We’ve rounded up our favorite choices for weight control cat foods based on your cat’s specific needs — but before you change your pet’s food, be sure to check with your vet about what is best for your individual cat.
Blue Buffalo started as a food created by a man and his two sons to help cure their dog’s health issues, and has grown into one of the most widely-used and recommended pet foods on the market. The Blue Buffalo Adult Healthy Living Weight Control cat food is our choice for the best overall dry weight management cat food. With 30% protein and only 9% fat, Blue Buffalo’s weight control food balances your cat’s calories so that she gets the nutrition she needs, without the added fat.
Blue Buffalo... also guarantees that no chicken by-products are used in their food. Adding animal by-products to pet food is how many companies keep protein high and costs low, but they can be detrimental to your pet’s wellbeing. Many reviewers agreed that Blue Buffalo helped their cat lose weight or stay at an optimal weight. Some owners mix the weight control food with a standard calorie food to make it more enticing to picky eaters.
Wellness Complete is a well-recognized premium pet food brand that also uses only high-quality ingredients and no by-products. Similar to the Blue Buffalo dry food, Wellness Complete is made up of 30% protein and 9% crude fat. It also contains Glucosamine and Chondroitin, two substances known to help slow joint destruction and relieve arthritis pain, which is a great preventative for your aging cat.
Wellness Complete has more fiber than typical cat food, while helps cats feel full faster and... reduces overeating. Owners say Wellness not only helped cut down on excess weight in their cat, but some report that it helped with allergies as well. Since it doesn't contain fillers, it’s a great choice for cats with sensitive stomachs.
Picking a grain-free cat food is a great choice for many reasons. Grains like corn, wheat, and rice are the foundation of many cat foods because they’re filling and cheap. But some cats have a hard time digesting grains, usually because they’re allergic to them or because they have an underlying health condition. Grain-free cat food is ideal for cats with skin allergies, but often, because they contain more ingredients like chicken, they can be higher in fat than grainy foods.
Halo’s Healthy... Weight food is a great compromise. Made with whole wild salmon and whitefish, it’s still very low in fat without the grains. It does have slightly more fat than other low-fat brands (12%), but it’s still a solid choice for your cat.
Reviewers note that the food is a bit smelly (its number-one ingredient is fish, after all), but the odor is worth it for a high-quality, reduced calorie, grain-free cat food.
Nature's Variety Healthy Weight Chicken is another grain-free cat food that is made without corn or wheat. If your cat is a picky eater, putting him on a low-calorie diet can be frustrating, as weight control foods tend to offer fewer of the fatty additives that cats get addicted to. Nature’s Variety has a boost of freeze-dried raw chicken, which makes this dry food more appetizing to finicky cats. Nature’s Variety has 37% protein and 12% fat, so it’s great for keeping your pet fuller... longer.
Reviewers say Nature’s Variety is a great choice for cats that need to maintain their weight. Since it’s slightly higher in fat (a result of the increased protein from raw food), it may be a little more difficult for your cat to lose weight on this food. But it’s a great choice for those who have a picky eater that tends to put on the pounds and needs a great weight maintenance food.Continue to 5 of 7 below.
There are many benefits to feeding a cat a wet food diet. Cats that are prone to UTIs are great candidates for wet food. Wet food has also been shown to reduce obesity and diabetes in cats, often because many dry foods contain fatty fillers. Hill’s Science Diet Adult Light canned cat food is a great choice for a low-calorie wet cat food. It contains high levels of natural fiber, which help to keep your cat feeling full all day. Because a wet food diet requires scheduled meal times (instead of... grazing), it can help you better maintain a stricter calorie diet. Do note that Hill’s Science does contain pork by-products, but due to the high quality of other ingredients in Adult Light, we still think it’s a great choice for a low-calorie wet food.
Hairballs are a fact of life for many cat owners, especially those with longhaired felines in their lives. The AvoDerm Hairball & Weight Control Cat Food is a great choice for pet parents who find themselves cleaning up hairballs far too often. AvoDerm is made with avocados, which have been known to promote a healthy coat in pets. The top ingredients in AvoDerm are chicken and rice, so it’s not a grain-free choice. AvoDerm has 5% fiber, which aids in digestion and helps reduce hairballs.
Revie...wers say that not only did their heavy cats shed weight on AvoDerm, but that they saw a marked reduction in hairballs almost immediately. If your cat is prone to hairballs, AvoDerm is a great weight control food. Your couch and carpet can thank us later.
Just because Fluffy is on a diet doesn’t mean you can’t reward her with a few treats now and then. We love Twin Critters’ low-calorie cat treats because they’re made only with 100% pure whitefish, nothing else. They’re incredibly low in fat and calories, which is great when you want to treat a cat with weight issues. They’re also high in Omega-3 fatty acids, which promotes a healthy skin coat.
Reviewers remark on the slightly pungent smell, but rave that their cats love the CodderTots treats. If... your cat is on a low-calorie diet, a healthy, fat-free treat is a great way to reward him for good behavior while keeping his calories restricted.