The Best Diet for Cats to Lose Weight

Are you concerned about your cat’s health? With the right diet, you can help your cat lose weight and enjoy a lifetime of happiness. Discover the best diet for cats to help them reach their weight loss goals.

Quick facts: Best Diet For Cats To Lose Weight

  • ✅ The average feline needs 20-35 calories per pound of body weight each day to maintain a healthy weight (American Veterinary Medical Association).
  • ✅ Obese cats should be fed 25% fewer calories than a cat of ideal weight to facilitate safe and healthy weight loss (American Veterinary Medical Association).
  • ✅ Dry food is often higher in calories than wet food and should be avoided to aid in weight loss (PetMD).
  • ✅ High-fiber foods are recommended for cats on a weight loss diet to make them feel fuller for longer and reduce overeating (PetMD).
  • ✅ Variety and rotation of proteins should be considered when transitioning cats to a weight loss diet to prevent nutrition deficiency (The Spruce Pets).

Nutrition Basics

Proper nutrition with a balanced diet of high-quality cat food is one of the most important things to consider when trying to help your cat lose weight. It’s important to feed your cat the right types of food, in the right portion sizes, and at the right times of day.

Now, let’s look at the specific nutrition basics for cats that need to lose weight:

Understand your cat’s nutritional needs

Nutrition is an important part of any cat’s health and well-being, and it’s even more important if your cat needs to lose weight. To ensure your pet is getting all the essential nutrients they need, you should understand their specific nutritional needs.

Cats are obligate carnivores, which means they need animal-based proteins as their primary source of nutrition. For weight loss in cats, a high protein diet is key for controlling hunger. Opt for lean meat sources such as chicken, beef or fish over processed foods with fillers like wheat and corn. Cats also require essential fatty acids such as omega-3s from sources like fish oils or flaxseed oil for healthy skin and coat.

Fruits and vegetables can provide vitamins and minerals, but in smaller amounts compared to meat products. One way to get the most benefit out of these foods is to choose ones that are rich in fiber – apples, carrots and spinach are some examples. Low fiber carbs such as oatmeal can also be included in a cat’s diet for weight loss; however, too much grain can cause digestive issues or put them at risk of developing diabetes.

Finally, it’s important to stay away from table scraps or human food that may be unhealthy for cats – no matter how much they beg!

Calculate your cat’s ideal body weight

Calculating your cat’s ideal body weight is an essential step in determining the best diet for your cat to lose weight. The most accurate way to calculate your cat’s ideal body weight is by consulting with your veterinarian.

Once you know your cat’s ideal body weight, you can adjust their daily caloric intake accordingly. In general, cats need anywhere from 30 to 50 calories per pound of bodyweight per day.

If your cat is overweight, it’s important to slowly cut back on their calorie intake and create a sustainable exercise plan. Don’t be tempted to feed them a radically reduced amount of food in an effort to speed up their weight-loss journey—this can cause more harm than good in the long run. If you feed your cat fewer than 30 calories per pound of bodyweight, they may become malnourished and suffer from nutrient deficiencies over time.

Diet Selection

Choosing the right diet for your cat can be a daunting task, especially when the goal is to help them lose weight. There are many options available but it’s important to do your research and select the one that is best tailored to meet your cat’s needs.

Let’s explore the different diets available and how they can help your cat achieve their weight loss goals:

Consider a high-fiber diet

When trying to safely and effectively help your overweight cat lose weight, consider a high-fiber diet. Fiber is vital to helping cats feel full with fewer calories. It helps slow the absorption of food, leading to more sustained energy throughout the day. Foods with added fiber include fresh fruits and vegetables and specially formulated dry kibble or wet food.

When selecting your cat’s diet, be sure to look for foods with a minimum of 4 percent crude fiber. In addition, dietary fat should be kept at 12 percent or less while protein should remain between 28 to 35 percent. With effort and attention to detail you can find diets that meet your cat’s needs while helping him reach his ideal weight.

Consider a low-carb diet

When cats lose weight, the goal is to reduce their caloric intake while maintaining or increasing their activity level. Low-carb diets are specifically designed to limit carbohydrate intake while providing increased protein and fat content. Cats who suffer from obesity may benefit from a low-carb diet since they will not be ingesting too many carbohydrates that could lead to increased fat storage. Additionally, this type of diet can also be beneficial for cats with diabetes as a way of managing their blood glucose levels.

When choosing a low-carb diet, it is important to ensure that the food is high in quality proteins and fats which are essential for any cat’s daily nutrition needs—without sacrificing flavor! To avoid gastrointestinal issues, it is recommended that you slowly transition your cat over to the new food over the course of 7-10 days. This will allow your cat’s digestive system time to adjust, reducing any potential health complications from sudden dietary changes.

Consider a high-protein diet

When a cat needs to lose weight, selecting a high-protein diet can be an effective option. Not only are high-protein diets low in carbohydrates, but they also help to maintain lean muscle mass and provide essential amino acids that cats need for energy. Generally, most cats should consume a diet that is at least 30–35% protein.

When selecting the right high-protein diet for your cat, look for options that contain real meat as the main source of protein—such as lamb, chicken and beef—and avoid low-quality fillers like corn and wheat gluten. You should also ensure that the food does not contain too much fat—generally no more than 8%. Additionally, you may want to look for foods with added fiber or probiotics to further aid in digestion.

Portion Control

Portion control is one of the most important aspects of a cat’s diet when trying to lose weight. Feeding your cat the right amounts of food and variety of food will help maintain their ideal weight and keep them healthy.

Let’s look at some guidelines for portion control when it comes to a cat’s diet:

Measure your cat’s food

Measuring your cat’s food is an important part of proper portion control. Feeding with a measuring cup ensures that each meal is the same size, so you can easily track how much your cat is eating and make adjustments if needed. You should measure in cups or tablespoons and be sure to use the same measure each time you feed your cat. Many cats will eventually learn to eat the exact amount of food in each meal, which eliminates the need for measuring.

The best diet for cats to lose weight includes healthy portions and high-quality ingredients that are lower in fat and calories than your average store-bought kibble. When calculating portion sizes, remember that on average cats should consume 250-300 calories per day depending on their activity level, weight, and other factors.

To help ensure a balanced diet, serve wet food as it is usually higher in protein compared to dry food which can help with weight loss or maintenance.

Divide your cat’s daily food into multiple meals

Divide your cat’s daily food into multiple meals instead of providing one large meal per day. This will give them a better chance of feeling full throughout the day and prevent overeating. If possible, make them wait between each meal and try to spread out their meals evenly throughout the day. Doing so helps establish a healthy eating routine that is easier for your cat to acclimate to, making it easier for your pet to stick with their diet over time.

Additionally, try not to free feed cats who are obese as this can encourage them to overeat and become even more overweight or obese. By monitoring total food intake on a daily basis, it can help you make sure that your cat is achieving ideal weight loss goals without going too far in either direction with their calories consumption.


Regular exercise is an important part of helping cats lose weight. Exercise helps build muscle mass, increase metabolism, and burn excess calories. It also helps keep cats healthy and active. Incorporating regular activity into a cat’s daily routine can be a helpful part of their weight loss journey.

Let’s look at what kind of exercise is best for cats:

Increase your cat’s activity level

Exercise is an important factor in any weight-loss regimen for cats, as it helps burn calories and helps your cat maintain muscle mass. You can increase your cat’s physical activity level by introducing interactive play sessions throughout the day – incorporating fishing pole-style toys and high-value treats to motivate your cat during the playtime.

If your cat is uninterested in toys, you can also encourage natural behaviors through hide-and-seek, “chase the flying feather” games, or by simply providing multiple scratching objects throughout your home. Providing varied activities that engage all of your cat’s senses will not only help with weight loss, but boost emotional wellness as well.

Incorporate playtime into your cat’s routine

Incorporating interactive playtime into your cat’s routine is an important part of helping them burn off extra calories and stay healthy. Try to engage them in 20 minutes of active playtime each day.

Laser pointers are a great way to get cats to run around, jump and climb in the pursuit of their goal: the red dot! Alternatively, you can set up designated “play stations” for your cats with toys like wand toys, scratching posts, puzzles or balls – anything that encourages a bit of activity. Supervised one-on-one playtime with you can also be a good bonding experience for both you and your cat, as well as providing exercise. Just be sure not to overwhelm your pet – let them rest in between bouts of play.

Even if your cat is used to being kept indoors, there are still plenty of ways they can stay active without having to go outside! Here are some ideas:

  • Laser pointers
  • Wand toys
  • Scratching posts
  • Puzzles
  • Balls
  • Supervised one-on-one playtime with you

Monitoring Progress

When your cat is trying to lose weight, it is important to keep track of your pet’s progress. This means monitoring the cat’s weight and body condition score regularly and adjusting the diet accordingly. Additionally, this is also a great opportunity to evaluation the cat’s current diet and see what changes need to be made.

Let’s look at the different ways to effectively monitor your cat’s weight loss progress:

Weigh your cat regularly

Weighing your cat regularly is an important part of monitoring their progress while on a weight loss diet. This helps to ensure that they are losing weight at a healthy and steady rate. Weighing your cat should be done on the same scale, in the same spot, wearing the same clothes each time.

To weigh your cat accurately and safely, stand on a scale holding your cat and write down the weight. When you step off the scale, subtract your own body weight from that figure to find out how much your cat weighs.

Your veterinarian will likely suggest a regular schedule for weighing your cat – such as once every two weeks during active dieting or once per month during maintenance phase of the diet – in order to make sure that their weight is decreasing steadily over time.

Additionally, you may need to track any other changes such as:

  • Food intake
  • Amount of exercise done each day

to ensure you’re doing everything correctly for optimal progress and health for your pet.

Monitor your cat’s food intake

Monitoring your cat’s food intake is an important part of helping them to lose weight. Keeping track of how much your cat is eating can help you in adjusting their diet accordingly.

To start, measure out the amount of food that your cat should be eating for each meal and set it aside for them. This can help prevent overeating. Additionally, if you are using wet food, make sure to read the labels and calculate how many calories are in each can or pouch so that you can accurately measure out the right amount for each meal.

You should also weigh your cat regularly to track their weight loss progress or make any necessary changes to their diet.

Track your cat’s activity level

Tracking your cat’s activity level is a key component to managing the weight of your pet. To do this, you will need to establish a baseline activity level and then adjust their diet accordingly.

For example, if your cat is an indoor-only pet, they should be getting an average of 20-30 minutes of active play/exercise each day to help them stay at a healthy weight. If they are more active than that, their caloric intake should be adjusted accordingly.

Additionally, tracking the amount and type of food you feed your cat each day can also help in monitoring progress. Making sure that your cat is eating the right amounts and types of food in relation to their activity levels can help keep them at or near their target weight range. If you notice any sudden changes in weight or appetite, it’s important to consult with a veterinarian promptly.

FAQs about: Best Diet For Cats To Lose Weight

Q: What is the best diet for cats to lose weight?

A: A veterinarian-prescribed weight loss plan is the best way to ensure that your cat loses weight safely. A typical weight loss plan for cats will involve a combination of a specially-formulated lower-calorie diet, scheduled meals, and increased activity.

Q: How long does it take for a cat to lose weight on a diet?

A: The amount of time it takes for a cat to lose weight on a diet will vary depending on the individual cat and the diet plan prescribed. Generally, a healthy amount of weight loss for cats is about 1-2% of their body weight per week.

Q: How can I help my cat stay motivated to stick to the diet?

A: You can help keep your cat motivated by providing plenty of positive reinforcement and making sure they’re getting plenty of exercise. You can also add some low calorie, healthy treats to their diet to make sure they’re getting variety.

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