Fat Isn't Cute!
Obesity is a growing trend among not only people, but their pets. People often think a few extra pounds won’t hurt, but on a much smaller frame, a few pounds quickly adds up. Obesity can lead to diseases such as diabetes, arthritis, hepatic lipidosis and lower urinary tract disease, amongst others.
In a healthy cat, you should be able to feel (but not see) the backbone and ribs without much pressure. You should also see a waist when looking down on the cat.
As the cat gets larger, more fat deposits are laid down and the Body Condition Score (BCS) increases. An ideal cat is 5/9 on the BCS chart (or 3/5 on another). An obese cat is 9/9, while an emaciated cat is 1/9. Vets can use this chart to help track weight over time. Every point on the scale is an increase in 10-15% extra body weight.
A good way to help keep cats trim (as with people too!) is to monitor diet, don’t feed too many treats, don’t feed table scraps, and help them exercise!