Our feline companions have a reputation of being finicky eaters, the furry embodiments of “picky, picky, picky.”
But what if you have a cat that you want to force into “Overeaters Anonymous”? Your cat eats and eats and eats, and then eats more.
What’s up with that?
Veterinarian Arnold Plotnick weighed in on the issue in a CatChannel post, and this is what he had to say.
Disease. Scarfing down everything in sight could be a sign of diseases like diabetes or hyperthyroidism. With diabetes, cats drink a lot, urinate more and lose weight. Hyperthyroidism means that the thyroid gland is overly active, producing an excess of hormones; it’s usually seen in older cats. It’s a good idea to have your cat’s blood tested to rule out these two illnesses.
Maldigestion. Your ravenous cat could also be a victim of exocrine pancreatic insufficiency. It’s not commonly seen, but when it strikes, it means that your cat’s pancreas doesn’t produce enough enzymes to digest food properly. The cat will eat, but undigested nutrients don’t get absorbed, and the cat will still think that it is starving. Quite unpleasant. On top of that, the cat will lose weight and suffer from diarrhea. Yuck! You can get a blood test for your kitty, called Trypsin-Like Immunoreactivity (TLI) test. This way, you can rule out a medical cause for your cat’s gluttony.
Once you’ve ruled out disease, and your cat is still chowing down on kibble 24/7, maybe it’s time to put the cat on a diet.
Too bad there isn’t a Weight Watchers for the kitty population.