Whether your cat was a healthy weight or overweight, if they're suddenly dropping ounces or pounds, it's something you should never ignore. Sudden weight loss in cats is generally not a good sign and can have devastating effects if ignored. Here are the complications your cat could experience if they're losing weight and how you can prevent them from happening.
Problems that Cause Weight Loss
Cats can lose weight for a lot of reasons - both good and bad. Chances are if your cat is exercising more and losing weight. As a result, it's not a bad thing. However, if your cat has about the same activity level as usual and is losing weight, it either means they're not eating enough, or something is wrong with their body.
Cats often lose weight due to undiagnosed diseases. For example, kidney disease can cause cats to lose their appetites to nausea and drop pounds as a result. Cancer is also another unfortunate culprit of this problem. In some cases, cats may develop gastrointestinal problems, like blockages from consuming too much fur, which can make a cat lose their appetite and lose weight. In any case, if your cat is shedding pounds, it's worth bringing them to a vet's office.
Fatty Liver Disease
One of the biggest problems with a cat losing weight is that they can experience fatty liver disease as a result. This illness is a side-effect of a cat's body trying to process stored fat at a rapid pace. Unlike humans and other species, cats' bodies aren't intended to store large quantities of fat to use later as energy. As a result, the liver can become overburdened with stored fat, and the cat can become ill as a result. The good news is, a fatty liver disease is treatable if caught early with the help of a vet.
If you think your cat is losing weight, you should see a veterinarian. Your vet will be able to examine your cat to try and find the culprit. Blood tests, urine tests, and x-rays may be necessary to figure out what part of your cat's body is causing the weight loss. If the underlying disease is found, your vet will work with you to develop a treatment plan to help your cat. If no underlying disease is discovered, your vet may suggest other types of cat food that may be more appealing to your cat, which may help them to regain some weight.
While losing weight might seem like a good thing for a pudgy kitty, it needs to be done gradually. If your cat is losing weight at a rapid pace, seek help from a vet office like Oakton Animal Hospital immediately to prevent serious complications.