Do cats overeat?

Cats are fussy eaters! A cat that cannot smell its food would not eat up to the point that it will practically starve itself. Unlike dogs, cats are not voracious eaters. Cats that have continuous access to food would take several small meals throughout the day. When it comes to eating, cats are not unlike little ladies as these animals would typically nibble the food. Cats seldom overeat. However, some cat owners intentionally entice the pet to overeat. Cat owners enjoy having a fat cat to cuddle.

While cats generally regulate their eating, some individuals tend to overeat. Overeating usually occurs in indoor cats that are left alone all day. Cat owners that are gone all day would allow the cat free access to food. Without stimulating activities, with no toys and no other cats as playmates, the cat would turn its attention to food. Humans that have nothing else to do would typically turn the attention to food. Eating is one of the no-fail remedies for boredom. The same is true with cats. Anxiety will make the cat overeat. Conditions like being left in pet sitters, an introduction of a new pet or a new baby in the family can cause stress and anxiety in cats. Cats have the reputation of being solitary and independent creatures. However, domestication has resulted in a pet that forms strong bonds with the owners. The novelty of having a new pet would make owners devote more time to the newcomer. The resident cat that feels left out can develop unwanted behaviors. Anxiety can make the pet overeat. Overeating can be the result of allowing the new pet to eat with the established pet. Although sufficient food is provided, a cat may eat voraciously to best the other pet. The cat’s tendency to overeat can be blamed on the overindulgent behavior of cat owners. Cats make wonderful pets thus it would not be surprising if cat owners would develop the tendency to overindulge the pet. Aside from the regular meals, the pet is given treats. People have the habit of sharing whatever is eaten with the pet. The pet would get to taste the family’s dinner. Table scraps will go directly to the pet’s food bowl as well.

The appearance of the pet would depend to a great extent to the way it is being cared for by the owners. People have the common idea that fat cats are well-cared pets. Some cat owners would intentionally allow the pet to overeat. It is certainly more satisfying to cuddle a fat pet. However, allowing the pet to overeat is actually allowing the pet to get obese. Obesity is one of the most common nutritional problems of cats. After eating voraciously, a cat would have no inclination to move. Eating large amounts of food when coupled with being sedentary would result to obesity. The cat may have a roly-poly appearance but excessive weight gain can result to various health concerns.

The tendency to overeat and the consequent obesity are conditions that only occur in domestic cats. Obesity seldom happens to wild cats. Domestic cats’ wild counterparts are always active. These cats have to hunt in order to survive. In spite of the fact that food is scarce at times, cats in the will would stop eating after they have had their fill. This is why half eaten preys are often seen. Obesity is more common in domestic cats as they are provided with all the food they can eat. Cat owners though must be aware of the dangers of allowing the cat to overeat. Breathing problems, diabetes, urinary problems are only some of the health concerns associated with overeating.

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