Obesity is the most common form of malnutrition for cats in the United States. According to a recent study by the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention, an estimated 21 percent of our nation’s cats are obese (meaning they’re at least 20 percent above their ideal weight). Another 58 percent of cats are overweight (between 10 and 20 percent above their ideal weight) and definitely on their way to obesity.
“Weight gain occurs when cats have a ‘positive energy balance’ for an extended period of time,” says board-certified veterinary nutritionist Dottie Laflamme, DVM, PhD, of Floyd, Va. In other words, cats consume more calories than their body requires. The excess energy is stored as fat.
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