I introduced my carb sensitive cat in a post about my adventure taking him to the vet in a too small carrier. I decided it was time to share some of our adventures helping him lose weight. The veterinarian said he needed to lose a few pounds and suggested more exercise, stopping kitten food (he was 10 months old), no human food, portion control, and poor kitty, also lower carb cat food.
Tackling the food seemed like an easy place to start. Ok, no more kitten food was easy. Portion control lower carb food started with simple pate wet food that was already packaged for 1 serving. He liked the switch from dry to wet food. He was not fond of the reduced amount of food. He begged for more and became determined to get our food.
Exercise. He was a tree cat. Was. I tried to encourage him by picking him up and holding him just below the lower branches. He gave me a look over his shoulder that said “Lady, we both know this is not going to work.” He didn’t have the strength to pull his weight? We set him up with a leash and a small dog harness. A walk around the backyard worked exactly once. Ok, we will work with his lack of exercise and strength. I put the other cats’ food higher than he could jump and kept his food dish on the floor. Cat treats and a laser dot just out of reach was the starting point for exercise.
The different food dish locations and better portioned lower carb food worked some. Then a new kitten came along as a temporary foster. A kitten could be his play buddy. Sounded like a good idea. We became attached. That is when “outwit the cat” began. The tiny, young, orphaned kitten needed his food dish on the floor too. I put a plastic milk crate upside down over the kitten’s bowl. This lasted while the kitten was small enough to walk through the holes. If the big cat ate the kitten’s food, he was sneaky about it. Then the kitten grew. A wooden craft crate with a cut out only big enough for the kitten was the next feeding control method.
The wooden crate over the kitten’s food became a daily puzzle for both the big cat and me. His puzzle to get the kitten food and mine to prevent him. I finally ended up with sticky tabs on a plastic placemat to keep the bowl in place, out of reach, keep the placemat from sliding, and keep the crate in place. The cat was a very determined puzzler but was finally stumped, for a little while.
Then came our Cat or Pooh moment. Just like Winnie the Pooh trying to leave Rabbit’s home, our cat became stuck in the kitten door hole! I don’t know how long he was stuck before I found him. It took awhile to finish laughing and taking just the right picture before I lifted the crate off the big cat. Yes, the kitten food was all gone.
The saga of this cat’s weight loss adventures will continue.