promotion image of download ymail app

What causes gradual weight loss in cats?

I have a 7 year old, unspayed female kitty who has lost around 3 pounds over the past 2 years. I have not changed the way I feed her or what she eats, and no other environmental changes took place. I feed dry food, and leave it out all day for her to share with my other cat, but only a certain amount.

Could it be a dental problem? She seems to be eating the same amount, but maybe not. Another possible culprit would be pieces of plastic bags. I try my best to keep her from them, but she sometimes finds them and chews off and ingests pieces. Is it possible that they are clogging her intestines or something? Would that cause weight loss?

Has anyone else had this happen to their cat? What are possible causes aside from what I listed (like I think certain cancers can cause weight loss, etc)


Thank you so much for all your help! I'll try to be more detailed.

1) She was originally 9 pounds, and very slender and musculer, but now is about 6 and very boney.

2) I do feed them a cheap corn food, and I know that is bad, but my other cat is of normal weight, so I'm just trying to figure out the cause of the weight problem for now.

3) They both have their own bowls which I fill in the morning, but by the evening there is usually some left so the skinny one is not deprived of food by the other one.

4) She is a tortoiseshell so her gums are pink and black, no red. They are tightly in place in the mouth.

5) I do not have children, I am 15. It's pointless to judge someone by insult. I try my best. My parents do not support my seriousity in keeping healthy pets, they think it's okay for her to do so they never stop it if I'm not around. I also can't watch her 24/7 so when she decides to knock down some of the bags off a shelf, it would take me a while to take them away from her.

Update 2:

6) She is not spayed because she is actually infertile and does not go into heat. Around here, vets charge a LOT for a simple thing like spaying. My other cat cost $400 total for various reasons. Since I am not the one paying for these things, I do not get much say.

7) She has never been outside.

My family does not have much money to spend on our pets. We commonly have pit falls where they just have to wait until a better time. I am trying to figure out whether or not her health is in need to immediate vet attention. If so, we would take her to a vet, but i just don't want to go if it's something unimportant. I will move out when 18, and when I have some money saved up, that is when they will be recieving proper vet care and food. But please be polite and not say things you know nothing about.

22 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    Older cats will lose weight even if they are healthy, but it could be anything - start of diabetes, start of kidney disease, Hyperthyroidism, All of these things need to be tested for, by a vet.

    Please go to the vet to make sure that your cat is healthy. Also keeping a cat intact is hard on a cats body, and I would seriously consider having her spayed. This will prevent breast and uterine cancer, along with keeping her energies to staying healthy, rather than going to heat regularly.

    • Commenter avatarLogin to reply the answers
  • grogan
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    Cat Weight Loss Causes

    • Commenter avatarLogin to reply the answers
  • 4 years ago


    Source(s): Holistic Weight Loss Pills -
    • Commenter avatarLogin to reply the answers
  • Ken
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    Even though the weight loss is gradual, I am a bit concerned and think you should go in for bloodwork. There could be a thyroid problem Any change in bowel movements or peeing

    You shouldn't be feeding dry foods

    Contrary to what you may have heard; dry foods are not a great thing to feed a cat.

    Please read the label on what you are feeding? What are the ingredients? Do you know what they mean? Is the first ingredient a muscle meat like chicken or is it meal or other things?

    Dry foods are the number 1 cause of diabetes in cats as well as being a huge contributing factor to kidney disease, obesity, crystals, u.t.i’s and a host of other problems. Food allergies are very common when feeding dry foods. Rashes, scabs behind the tail and on the chin are all symptoms

    The problems associated with Dry food is that they are loaded with carbohydrates which many cats (carnivores) cannot process them. Also, Most of the moisture a cat needs is suppose to be in the food but in

    Dry, 95% of it is zapped out of dry foods in the processing. Another thing, most use horrible ingredients and don't use a muscle meat as the primary ingredient and use vegetable based protein versus animal. Not good for an animal that has to eat meat to survive.

    You want to pick a canned food w/o gravy (gravy=carbs) that uses a muscle meat as the first ingredient and doesn't have corn at least in the first 3 ingredients if at all. Fancy feast is a middle grade food with 9lives, friskies whiskas lower grade canned and wellness and merrick upper grade human quality foods. The optimum food to feed cats has no grains whatsoever, cats have no use for them and many have trouble processing them as well as the carbs. IBD is another disease that is rapidly becoming common amoung cats because of the inappropriate diets being fed.

    Also, dry food is not proven to be better for teeth. Does a hard pretzel clean your teeth or do pieces of it get stuck?

    Please read about cat nutrition.

    • Commenter avatarLogin to reply the answers
  • How do you think about the answers? You can sign in to vote the answer.
  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    My kitty is 9 years old and over the years she has lost weight too. My vet says over the years cats and dogs gradually lose weight just like humans. It doesn't mean anythings wrong it just means your kitty has started getting older. Of course your cat may still be as active as a kitten but weight loss is normal. My cat's behavior has changed but in a good way. She is alywas by me and loves attention, which she usually is never like. So it's a good thing. But I would make sure you have food out for your cat more often and a auto-water stytem would help prevent kidney diease. Older cats need water and it should always be available to them fresh. I hope this helps you.

    Source(s): vets, internet
    • Commenter avatarLogin to reply the answers
  • 1 decade ago

    well my cat lost weight gradually because of tapeworms make sure no segments are coming out of its behind i didnt see segments until two weeks later and i put the pieces together once i did i had to make sure she gained the weight back so i mixed the same brand of her regular adult food with the brands kitten food to help her get a healthy weight back

    also check and see if it may be distemper not sure i dont wish that on anyones cat but i was reading up on it and it does cause gradual weight loss

    • Commenter avatarLogin to reply the answers
  • 1 decade ago

    1. you did not say how heavy your cat was to begin with. Was she obese? If so, weight loss is good.

    2. she is not getting proper nutrition from dry food. Cats are obligate carnivores. They MUST get protein from animals, not plants. Read the bag. Corn is not good for cats.

    3. could your other cat be hogging the food? you seem unsure of how much she actually consumes. in a house with 2 cats, one will always be dominant.

    4.look at her teeth and gums. are they red? have the gums pulled away from the teeth? can you be a pet owner and let her eat pieces of plastic bags? I hope you do not have small children.

    6.since you did not act responsibly and get her spayed, YES, she could have certain cancers. you let her outside? she could have Felv or any number of diseases.

    8. take responsibility for your animal and take the poor thing to a vet for testing. it will cost you a bundle, but it sounds like you haven't spent much on her in 7 years. you owe her.

    Source(s): life long cat companion and shelter volunteer
    • 4 years agoReport


    • Commenter avatarLogin to reply the answers
  • Anonymous
    4 years ago

    If she ever starts to look under weight and you notice different behaviors from her you should take her to the vet, there could be a health problem. Are you feeding her mostly dry food? If so, then maybe since she is older her body is having a harder time getting calories and nutrients from the dry food.

    • Commenter avatarLogin to reply the answers
  • Diane
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    I've lost 5 kilos in my first week. It's my 10th day and I have included salad with some protein (eg. egg/ lean chicken) as you suggested. After 4 years of trying, the fat is finally coming off. It truly feels like magic!

    Get started today!

    • Commenter avatarLogin to reply the answers
  • 3 years ago


    Source(s): Kidney Health Solutions
    • Commenter avatarLogin to reply the answers
Still have questions? Get your answers by asking now.