Feline Obesity & the Risk of Fatty Liver

Fat Cats Are in Serious Danger


I gave a kitten to a cat-loving family about 6 months ago. He was about 2 months old then. Now he’s HUGE. I almost didn’t recognize him. He is still young and not full-grown yet but he’s really, really fat. The cats knock the bag of dry food over and climb right in to help themselves. For breakfast each cat gets a fried egg!! I was wondering why only one cat is fat and the other is average?


Dr. Nichol:

All the cats in that family are in hog heaven; some are heavier because they’re more aggressive. But no cat, no matter how “BIG boned”, should weigh over 10 pounds. Heavy cats are at serious risk of heart, joint, and kidney disease. The biggest danger for felines with fat fannies is hepatic lipidosis-fatty liver disease.


As a pleasingly plump pussycat packs on the pork, the liver gets infiltrated with fat cells. That’s not a problem, until something comes along to make that kitty stop eating. Even minor things like constipation, skin wounds, or urinary disease can do it. Without a steady intake of calories, liver fat is broken down and organ failure is under way. Despite valiant attempts at treatment, cats can die of fatty liver disease. It’s tragic-and completely unnecessary.


All cat lover please raise your right (or left) hand and repeat aloud: “I solemnly swear that, unless my veterinarian directs otherwise, I will feed each kitty one quarter cup of dry food only (moistened for males) twice daily. Each cat will eat in a separate room, with the door closed (so they can’t steal). I will pick up the food when the cats walk away (finished or not). My cats will be allowed together only when there is no food available. My cats and I will live by this code, or I will donate my own liver to veterinary research, so help me God”. Thank you for asking.