Top Tips To Keeping Your Kitty Fit
We do a lot for our pets. We ensure they're fed everyday, they they receive the appropriate heart worm, tick, and flea prevention, and we make sure they're well hydrated and clean. Another vital responsibility for us pet owners though, is making sure that your pet is also receiving proper exercise and maintaining a fit physique. We understand that it's definitely trickier to make sure your cat is exercising regularly compared to dogs who are ready to run around just about whenever.
So we've devised a health checklist to make sure your cat is staying in top physical condition and provided some tips for getting them up and at 'em in case they're looking a little on the chunky side.
Cat Body Types
- If you can see your cat's pelvic and hip bones protruding.
- Your cat is extremely bony or weak.
- Looking down over your cat, you can see they have an extremely narrow waste.
- There is a pronounced tuck of their fur and stomach in the abdomen area.
- You can see their ribs and spine.
- Their waist is tapered and thin still.
- Slight tuck upwards in the abdomen area.
- Lean and skinny in appearanc
- You can feel your cat's bones but they aren't visible.
- Their waist is muscular and not thin.
- Raised abdomen, no sagging.
- Overall healthy and muscular body.
- Bones hidden under fat and it takes effort to feel them.
- Full waist and sagging stomach and abdomen.
- Appearing shorter and stout.
- Very chubby body with multiple rolls.
- Rolls of fat around the neck, face, and waist.
- Distended, saggy abdomen.
- Bulky and round appearance.
Your Cat's Health Checklist
❏ Vaccinations Up to Date
One of the most vital thing's you can do for your cat's health is to make sure they have been full vaccinated. Your kitty should be vaccinated against rabies, immunodeficiency viruses, feline leukemia, and more. Your cat should also be on heartworm, tick, and flea medications to prevent contractible diseases and worm infestations. If you’re unsure whether your cat is/was properly vaccinated, contact a vet.
❏ Proper Diet and Weight
Your cat shouldn’t have a saggy belly nor should their ribs be clearly visible through their skin. Your cat’s body should be firm and fleshed, but not too skinny or overweight. When looking down on your cat from above, she should have an “hourglass” shape. There is no perfect weight for a cat, but if yours rapidly drops or puts on weight, there could be something wrong and you should contact your vet.
❏ Heart Rate
Like breathing, your cat’s heart rate is unique to her body; it might change a bit with a new exercise regimen or even with age. Cats’ hearts beat fast – about 140-200 beats per minute.
❏ Clean, Healthy Teeth
You may not be able to readily tell whether your cat’s teeth are healthy. As long as she’s eating and behaving normally and regularly visiting the vet for checkups, her teeth are probably fine. If you notice terribly bad breath, trouble chewing, or visibly broken or cracked teeth, call the vet.
❏ Mites, Fleas, and Ticks
Your cat should be free of any parasites! Visible fleas, ticks, mites, or other bugs are cause for concern and necessitate a call to the vet. Signs of an infestation include dandruff, shaking of the head/scratching of the ears, and red welts on the skin or bald patches in her fur.
❏ Eye & Ear Health
Your cat’s eyes should be clear and free of any discharge. If you notice bloodshot eyes or a “third eyelid” (a white film over the eyeballs), be sure to contact the vet for a checkup. Your cat’s ears should be clean, with no wax, dirt or discharge. They should also appear quick and alert, to catch sounds. Don't go digging around though, any in-depth ear checks should be performed by your vet.
❏ Healthy Fur
Healthy cat fur is thick and shiny, free of any unexplained bald spots. Cats shed regularly, especially in the spring and fall seasons, but excessive shedding might be a sign of disease. Your cat’s coat should be clean and well groomed. Check for parasites, bald patches, sores, scabs, or otherwise unusual spots regularly.
❏ Behavior and Behavioral Changes
All of our cats are different! Healthy cats can be sleepy, energetic, aloof, clingy…just like people, all cats have different personalities. Major behavioral changes can be sign of illness though. Look for things like a suddenly-lethargic cat, a cat that becomes ravenous overnight, etc.
Tips To Keeping Your Cat Active & Fit
Food is a major preventative health measure for your pet, meaning food quality is as important as quantity when feeding your cat. Cat's are carnivores, their systems are designed for processing high protein, low to no carb diets. Feeding them the proper nutrients they need will go a long way for their energy levels, digestion, and weight. Feeding a cat solely dry food and processed treats contributes to their weight gain. We recommend feeding your cat SMACK Raw Dehydrated Cat Food. Made with 100% human-grade ingredients, GMO and grain free, this recipe is designed for sustaining our furry friends. It can be served as kibble, add water and serve it as soft food, or feed it as treats or toppings.
Designate Time For Play
It is a common misconception that cats are generally distant and detached. As with any other pet, the more affection you give to your cat, the more responsive they will be and the more willing to play and socialize they'll be next time. Cats also tend to respond better to repeated behavior and routines. What does this mean? Taking the time to play a little bit with your cat everyday will benefit the both of you, boredom is a cat's worst enemy after all. This way they'll become accustomed to playing with you regularly!
Switch Up Your Toy Collection
Just like us humans, cat's and pet's in general become easily bored with items they may have found fascinating just a few hours before. Work with your cat's desire to hunt, prowl and chase by finding fun toys and games you can incorporate in your play time. Electronic mice, laser pointers, wand and fishing pole type toys are usually big hits for keeping your cat moving. Of course we always recommend supplying your cat's with solid climbing fixtures, this is great aerobic exercise for your cat and let's be honest - cat's just love to climb stuff.