Researchers at Canada’s Ontario Veterinary College analyzed the electronic veterinary health data of over 19 million cats and found that not only do cats tend to put on weight as they age, but they also have been getting fatter over the past few decades.
The study, published in the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, found that a cat’s weight will gradually increase until it is around 8 years of age. Male cats tend to be heavier than females, and spayed/neutered cats tend to be heavier than unaltered cats.
Purebred cats reach their peak weight between 6 and 10 years of age, while non-purebred domestic cats peak at 8 years.
The mean weight of cats has increased overall from 1995 to 2005. However, weight has held steady between 2005 and 2015.
Researchers note that many cats in the study had only one weight on file, suggesting that regular vet visits where weight is taken are uncommon for many pet cats. They say that cats can be overlooked when it comes to health studies because they go to the vet less frequently than dogs.
In an article on the study, the researchers urge owners to monitor their cat’s weight regularly, including at-home weigh-in sessions. They note that unusual weight loss or gain can be a sign of a serious underlying health problem.
We’ve heard a lot about what makes a city dog-friendly, such as amenities like parks and restaurants that welcome dogs. But what makes a city cat-friendly?
Since we don’t normally take our cats out and about with us, are there other factors that make a place cat-friendly? Turns out, the answer is yes!
Trupanion and Redfin recently teamed up to create a list of the top 25 cat-friendly cities in the U.S. The criteria used include good access to feline-specific services such as veterinary clinics, hospitals, and shelters/rescues.
They also looked at homes for sale that had cat-friendly features like enclosed outdoor patios, room to climb, and extra bathrooms for litter boxes.
Another element considered was a lack of environmental hazards for cats with access to the outdoors (fewer parasites and poisonous plants, etc.)
Factoring in all these cat-friendly elements, the top cites for felines are:
1) Corvallis, Ore.
2) Spokane, Wash.
3) Orlando, Fla.
4) Bellingham, Wash.
5) Tulsa, Okla.
6) Raleigh, N.C.
7) New York, N.Y.
8) Dayton, Ohio
9) Clarksville, Tenn.
10) San Antonio, Tex.
11) Albuquerque, N. Mex.
12) Eugene, Ore.
13) Boston, Mass.
14) Allentown, Penn.
15) Dover, Del.
16) Columbus, Ohio
17) Boise, Idaho
18) Louisville, Ky.
19) Tacoma, Wash.
20) Lincoln, Neb.
21) Portland, Ore.
22) Minneapolis, Minn.
23) Knoxville, Tenn.
24) Santa Rosa, Calif.
25) Oakland, Calif.
The folks at Trupanion and Redfin remind pet owners that when searching for a new home in a new city, be sure to look at both the features of the house and the nearby facilities to maintain your pet’s health.