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Unread 01-09-2007   #1 (permalink)
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Default My cat, Layla, is a year and a half old, and has been with me since she was four mont

This is a fabulous question and one that a lot of cat owners struggle with! You are doing all the right things...feeding her a balanced diet, exercising her, and providing her with fresh water so good for you! But weight can still be an issue even when all these things are done. So first, I think we should have Layla's weight reassessed. While the "number" is important, she should also have her body condition score assessed, as this can be a very good indicator of whether she is overweight. Perhaps she has lost a little and you just aren't able to tell because you see her every day! I would give your veterinarian a call and see if they would allow you to run Layla in for a fast weight check and perhaps have a technician assess her body condition score. A cat with an ideal body condition score (5 out of 9) has a visible waist and easily palpable ribs and spine.
As far as diet, I would suspect that Layla is probably getting too much food. She may have a slower metabolism and need less than the feeding guidelines state (remember they are just guidelines) and even if it looks like the cats are splitting their food 50/50, I would bet Layla's getting a bigger share. may want to cut back on how much you are putting out, do more controlled feedings by amount or consider feeding the cats separately. I know it seems like 2 extra pounds is not a lot but remember she's only 12 pounds! If she were a 150 pound person that would be 25 pounds overweight! And that kind of extra weight has the potential to predispose her to joint issues, skin/grooming issues and diabetes, as she gets older. Better to nip it in the bud now and have her live a long healthy life!

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