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star16 02-10-2013 09:07 AM

Skinny cat??
Hello, just a quick question.

My cat has been having some health problems, and while he is healthy now, he is still pretty skinny. He's eating though, and is quite happy. I've been feeding him his prescription dry cat food, along with wet cat food, in the hopes that the wet cat food would give him a little more fat. While he loves it, he really isn't gaining much weight. Should I try kitten food instead?

ilovepets 02-14-2013 05:07 PM

how old is he? and how much does he weigh now? i have a large cat, but other cats i know are like styrofoam, but that doesnt mean their skinny.


Fulford15 02-14-2013 05:15 PM

Has he ever been wormed?

Chevaux 02-14-2013 05:29 PM

Are his health problems kidney related? If so, you wouldn't want to use kitten food as it will be higher in protein and you want to keep protein lower so his kidneys don't have to work too hard. Adding a bit of oil to food will usually help by providing a bit more fat without adding a great deal of protein. In the past I've used vegetable oil for this.

star16 02-14-2013 09:10 PM

He hasn't been wormed (he and my other cat only ever have contact w/ each other and never go outside) and he isn't that old, either... maybe around 8?

He has had some kidney problems in the past year and a half, but right now he's fine... besides being scrawny.

I'll have to try the oil... I already give my paint mare a splash of corn oil to fatten her up, might as well give the cat some veggie oil too! :)

lightning 02-16-2013 10:16 AM


I wouldn't give the oil. Cats are meat eaters and don't digest corn and corn bi products. You will do more harm than good.

What kind of kidney problems in the past? How were they kidneys diagnosed as having problems? Blood work? If so, just so you know there has to be close to 70% loss of kidney function for it to show up in the blood work. So by the time it is showing the renal values in the blood work as elevated the kidney disease is already pretty far along. An abdominal ultrasound with an internal medicine specialist is the way to go if you can.

What you have to watch out for in renal cats is that they get enough fluids. Often times the vet can show you how to give sub q fluids to your cat so you can do it at home. This really helps renal cats live full and happy lives.

Do you know for sure your cat has kidney issues?

Other causes of weight loss or just general skinny cats can be many. One of the more common is IBD, or intestinal lymphoma. Both can be treated but require an endoscopic biopsy for diagnosis.

Try going to the website called and look around there. There is alot of good advice and information about diet etc.

And make sure your cats have access to several areas of clean water to drink.

Hope your cat is doing okay.

star16 02-16-2013 11:42 AM

My parents and I made the decision that we would not be having any more invasive tests done on him. The last time that was done, he had to stay at the clinic for a few nights, and was very traumatized by it.

Thank you for the site advice, and the well-wishes!

lightning 02-16-2013 11:52 AM

you are going to know your cat better than anyone else. If it freaks him out to go to the vet then it is better he not be stressed. Stress is not good for anyone and in cats it can be extreemly bad. Just make sure he eats and remember that canned food is now thought to promote weight loss not gain and that dry food will actually pack on the weight better. But of course with any renal issues you want them to get enough fluids so the canned is better in that sense. There is a quick test you can do to see if he is dehydrated. A skin test where you pick up the skin gentle from the shoulders and let it go. It should snap back pretty quick. If it doesn't then most likely dehydrated.

Good luck with your kitty.

riccil0ve 02-16-2013 12:31 PM

I don't what your prescription dry food is, but it may be crap [Science Diet is the only prescription cat food I know of and it is horrid, horrid food]. So are you sure he needs it as opposed to a high quality cat food like Blue Buffalo, Pinnacle, Orijen, etc?

I steer clear of wet food unless its of a high quality brand like the ones I listed. My parents give their 13+ year old skinny guy a teaspoon or so of tuna fish in oil once a day. It's worked great for him, he's not fat but he filled in and is healthier than ever.

Feeding your cat poor quality food doesn't give him Enpugh nutrients to store. So you may be feeding a ton of something low quality but since it's mostly garbage, it'll pass through. Versus a high quality food that you can feed 1/2 a cup a day and be battling with obesity, lol.
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Cat 02-16-2013 12:41 PM

Look up Kitty Glop online. There are several versions online but here is one similar to what I have used in the past: Kitty Glop

It is excellent stuff for kittens and any cat that needs extra weight. Its easy to make and really easy for them to digest and cats love it. Use it as a supplement to the normal diet. It gives them the type of fat a cat's body can digest easily while also providing them probiotics to help their gut. Its also balanced well enough that kittens can be raised on it.

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