My 86 year old Mom has a sweet cat who is great company for her, and we love him so much. But she overfeeds him, and now he's overweight. He was abused about a year ago as a stray, and had his mouth wired back together, so for a long time, he was only able to eat canned cat food. He is healed and able to eat dry food as well, but she is constantly putting a little can of food in his bowl every time he meows at her. He probably eats double/triple what he needs......I'm not sure if she's just giving in to him too much, forgetting she fed him, or what. I've fussed to no avail. Told her his obesity will lead to health issues, but she either doesn't understand or care. I feel her mild dementia plays a role, and impulsive behavior. She lives alone, and I see her once or twice a week. I wrote a note and taped it to the shelf beside the canned food that says "Feed one can in morning and One can in afternoon) - nothing seems to work short of taking away all canned food and rationing.
Unfortunately she might not be able to remember or be able to respond in those other ways.
So even though your mother's cat gives her company, she is not able to take care of it any longer. Also, cats are quick and I hope the cat doesn't cause your LO to fall.
Cats are also nimble and tend to scat before you get there (yes, it happens) The one I have to worry about is my 21 yo... along with other issues she has kitty dementia and sometimes will silently ghost me, like a kitten might, so I have learned the kitty shuffle...
IF mom feeds both canned and dry food, get rid of the dry food. Although some cats do fine with it, in general it leads to many health issues, including obesity. There are too many carbs in it and not enough water for what they truly need.
If you can provide a good canned food, in the little cans, eating multiple times a day should be okay. Typically my cats will eat about 1 tblspn/meal and I feed them multiple times/day (4-5) In the wild, cats usually eat this way. How much canned food he should eat should be determined by his body size - mine range from 6.5# to 15#, no one overweight, but the little one needs less food!
Try to avoid the cheaper canned cat foods, as they likely have too many carbs as well. But, ensure he always gets some "play" time, and has cat trees to climb, etc, to work off some of the food! I've had trouble getting decent canned food, but the Friskies Gourmet Naturals has a lot less crap in them than other foods. Raw is another option, but would be a problem if she leaves the bag out and it defrosts! Mine get a combination of raw, home-made and canned. The raw comes in 1 oz little patties, the home-made is frozen in ice-cube trays, so about the same size (heaping tblspoon/meal!)
Leave just enough cans to provide about 5-6 oz/day (little more if he is a big cat, little less if he is smaller.) You could get some treats, but only leave a handful or so in a baggie, that she can toss for him between meals. She gets to "feed" him and he gets to run/catch it!
Not sure why you say the cat will get sick if you take it away - I was able to "cure" several cat issues by getting rid of the dry food (previously they all got canned food as well as dry.) Dry food is convenient for people, but the WORST thing anyone can feed their cats!
Also just for peace of mind, my brother now has a cat that had been a stray and this is the way he feeds her, leaves dry available all the time with a bowl of water and she doesn’t over eat. He’s a pilot and can leave a pile of food (and plenty of water) when he goes away for multi day trips and she is just fine, she is slim and healthy doesn’t over eat so maybe it depends on the cat but just because a cat was a stray doesn’t mean they will always gobble up what’s put in front of them or can’t learn that their next meal is always available now. I think it is a wonderful thing that your mom has a loved cat for company, for focus, so many positives IMHO. Good luck!
I used to have a Shih Tzu who loved nectarines. She would kill for them. So I would let her have some bites when I ate them. Can you imagine smelling something delicious and no one will give you any? I am allergic to onions and garlic and I sympathize.
Sorry you have to go through this, PLEASE, take care of yourself.
i don’t know how to fix this because of her dementia she probably thinks she didn’t feed him cause the dish is gone.
Years later, when my mother had to go into a rehabilitation center and then a nursing home I took the cat. I fed her the same type of food but reduced the amount and frequency and she adjusted. She’s healthy and slim.
Perhaps the day will come that your mother will no longer be able to have the cat as her companion and dependent. Until then you can try to watch out for its welfare but also recognize that there are probably psychological reasons for your mother’s over feeding behavior.
His cats look like sausage rolls, but I comfort myself that they're happy and otherwise well cared-for.
You have to choose your battles.
I suggest 1/2 can in the morning and the other half at dinnertime. Hard food can suppliment the cat in between. There are feeders that can be filled for that purpose even for water. I fed my cats (4) for years like this. No overweight cats.
Does your sister stop in in the morning and then in the evening then maybe she can feed the cat. That way the food can be kept out of Moms reach and out of sight. Or, the cat can eat the dry food during the day and sister can open a can for the evening.
This (above) is more in keeping with what the vet has told me. My 19 yr eats a lot of wet because he cannot metabolise well. The plump cat only likes a small amount of weight control dry. Go figure.
They are animals depending on responsible guardians to care for them.
Pigs are very intelligent - and clean - animals.
The cat, as with people, could be traumatized. Showing compassion for the cat - and the person (over) feeding the cat will assist all concerned. Cats, pets, like people, strategize and manipulate to get their needs met. In the case of pets, food often is a huge motivator - for attention. If the adult managing the food doesn't provide a nutritious amount, blame is on the adult(s) providing the food, not the cat (unless health issues).
Regarding eating, since the cat was a stray, he will eat any type of cat food put in front of him as in his mind he fears this could be his last meal and would need to forge for food.
How great that he and your Mom get along so well, he surely lucked out when he found her :)