Too much “treat love” during the pandemic increased the number of obese cats. According to 2020 research by Hill’s Pet Nutrition, 53% of pet parents admitted to giving their pets extra treats during COVID. While pet obesity and feline health have been an issue for years, 2021 research by Banfield Pet Hospital shows that feline obesity increased by 20% in 2020 from 2011 levels.
Overall, the 11th annual survey by the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention (APOP) found that nearly 60% of cats are overweight or obese, which means more cats are at risk of serious and even life-threatening feline health conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure, and liver disease.
The problem is, many cat owners don’t know their cats are overweight. In an article analyzing a recent APOP survey, Veterinary Practice News noted that 72% of pet owners taking part in the survey “knew that obesity could lead to their cat or dog’s early death, but 42 percent of the respondents didn’t know what a healthy weight looked like.” Even more unsettling for Veterinary Practice News, “93 percent of dog owners and 88 percent of cat owners whose animals were assessed as obese considered them to be of normal weight.”
As part of the article, Dr. Ernie Ward (founder of the APOP) cited pet obesity as having “the greatest collective negative impact on pet health,” and called the veterinary community to action, saying, “We must start working together to fight obesity through knowledge and action.”
We couldn’t agree more, which is why we prepared a complimentary Feline Health Kit with tools for practices to educate cat owners about the importance of feline weight management.
Available for a limited time, our kit includes:
- An educational handout for clients—Obesity in Cats: Synopsis of a ClientEd Handout—that you can print or email
- A shareable infographic to help clients understand how feline obesity can cause serious health risks for cats
- A customizable, prewritten email template for clients—5 Tips to Help Keep Cats at a Normal Healthy Weight
- Two social media images that you can post on Facebook to further remind cat owners about the importance of feline weight management